Policy Review A Proposal for CAP Updates

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snake_rattler

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As we're bringing Generation 7 to a close, we need to take a hard look at CAP Updates. In this thread, I want to propose a new process for Generation 8 CAP Updates and provide a platform for discussion on CAP Updates. It's my hope that I can present a logical argument for why a new process will be beneficial for CAP as a whole. A hearty thanks goes to cbrevan for co-developing these ideas with me and allowing me to use some of his prose. I will separate this post into three parts:
  • What needs to change in CAP Updates
  • How CAP Updates should operate
  • A bulleted summary
Part 1: What needs to change in CAP Updates

Before I begin, I must say that I will be addressing Generation 7's Updates shortcomings as I develop my thoughts on Generation 8 Updates. Quite simply, CAP Updates cannot take five months again. Generation 7 CAP Updates were enacted mainly to add hidden abilities to old CAPs, but competitive updates and a loose schedule ensured that these Updates took much longer to complete than expected, while also deviating from its primary focus. While we still have a duty to ensure that CAPs have a fair shot at new moves, and while we needed to update all the CAPs to Generation 7 standards in our first CAP Updates, Generation 8 Updates must take a shorter amount of time, especially with our hiatus based on this thread and this poll. CAP's priority is to execute CAP Processes; it is not to spend half a year on tweaking our past creations, a population that will only continue to grow.

Now, to ensure that CAP Updates will take a shorter amount of time, we have to reduce the scope of the project. This will solve the other issues with CAP Updates: its scope. Though Hidden Abilities were sorely needed, Generation 7 CAP Updates had a lot of competitive updates, and most of them were honestly unnecessary. While I don't think we should revert those changes, I'm taking a hard stance not to make further competitive updates in Generation 8 CAP Updates. As for why, there's not really a basis for how we buff those CAPs. We do Updates at the beginning of the generation. The metagame is in flux as Pokemon are banned in OU, trends are being established, mechanics being understood. Competitive updates in Generation 7 Updates were based on a Pokemon's relative performance in Generation 6, but that doesn't really make any sense at all. In short, we have no way of reliably establishing a way to buff Pokemon competitively. On the other hand, if we want to nerf CAPs, we have the nerfing process as outlined in this post. Furthermore, CAP Updates can be taken advantage of by users to leave their own mark on a CAP under the guise of "balancing" them. Unless the CAP is broken and we must undergo a nerfing process for the sake of balance, trying to change a CAP's original purpose blemishes the original creation process, which our community poured a lot of time and effort into. Whatever awesome ideas we have for the old CAPs can be applied to new CAPs or flashCAPs. Thus, I openly oppose any future intentional competitive updates.

Now, this means we can cut out a lot of content from the CAP Updates process. First off, we can cut off doing movepool revamps, which don't necessarily respect the original movepool submission at the time of the CAP's creation. 28+ movepool revamps take up a significant amount of time over a process, to the point where we dedicate at least a week to movepool submissions in a normal CAP process. There's no reason to do them again in CAP Updates. Now, for new moves to be added to the movepool, I'll get to later.

Second, we can remove ability changes and maintain the ban on stat changes. There's no reason to change abilities if we a) don't want to buff CAPs, b) have an alternative process to nerf CAPs, and c) have already added Hidden Abilities to Generation 4 CAPs. The same applies to stat changes: they are unnecessary.

Finally, we can reduce the amount of new moves to add to CAPs to only the new moves from Generation 8. Every CAP has gone through a moveset and movepool process, and every pre-Generation 7 CAP has gone through the last update process. They have all had the chance to get moves from each generation, including Generation 7. This includes move tutor moves added later in the generation (think USUM tutors) - even if the move tutor moves' access is new, all those moves existed for the entirety of the generation. Furthermore, we shouldn't have to continuously check move tutor moves every time they are released. Thus, the only truly new moves are the ones added in Generation 8. If the CAP missed a move during its process, then that's sort of just too bad. We don't need to waste our time going back and adding old moves. Also, there's no need to remove moves with the Nerfing Process. Now, since we aren't doing any movepool revamps, any new moves that are added will be added to their most logical place: if it's a TM move or a move tutor move, it'll go in their respective lists. Otherwise, it'll go somewhere in egg moves or level up.

Now, we need a basis for how to add new moves and to give us a framework for how not to buff CAPs unnecessarily. Let's define this as maintaining each CAP's general power level before and after updates. To reiterate, the logic behind this is that viability and other metagame dependent metrics require a stable metagame. However, the metagame is unreliable early in a generation because the metagame hasn't develop fully. Moreover, permanently changing how CAPs function based off such short-term trends is not something we should further condone on a large scale. While they are sometimes necessary for individual mons that are breaking the metagame in the Nerfing Process, large-scale changes just for the sake of having change in Updates and does nothing but further bury the legacy of the users who originally made the CAPs. As such, we should do our best to keep the post-update capabilities of CAPs as similiar to their pre-update capabilities as close as possible. To this end, "power level" shall be defined in a vacuum unrelated to any metagame, and based solely of what a CAP is capable of with the current tools it has. Also, "power ceiling" shall be defined as the maximum damage a Pokemon can deal with its STAB attacks. For future CAP Updates, each CAP's roles and its coverage moves, utility moves, and power ceiling should stay roughly the same. This means we should avoid adding new coverage types to CAPs or drastically more powerful coverage, avoid role defining moves such as pivoting, recovery, hazard control, status control, etc. and avoid boosting the power ceiling of Pokemon massively. An example of a good update from Generation 7 was Icicle Crash Syclant (a minor boost to a relatively weak STAB move didn't increase Syclant's power level drastically); a bad example was the dismissed Hydro Pump Krilowatt, which was considered but not allowed in the end (would have increased Krilowatt's power level considerably). This should quell large, unnecessary buffs that resulted in Phantom Force Necturna (which raised the power level too drastically) or Triage Revenankh (which drastically changed how the CAP functions). Last, moves should be added mainly based on appearance compared to real Pokemon and should fit the CAP's flavor identity. For example, Colossoil should not get Defog or other hazard removing moves just because it gets Rapid Spin, as there is no flavor connection between the moves and their similiarity comes from their mechanics. However, it rightfully earned discussion on High Horsepower in Generation 7 updates due to its access to Earthquake and the flavor association between the two, as well as not pushing the boundaries on its power level.

Part 2: How CAP Updates should operate

Again, I will refer to Generation 7 Updates' deficiencies for the sake of Generation 8 Updates' sake. This section will refer to leadership and timing. In short, Generation 7 Updates had a lot of leadership positions. First, there were Update Leaders (ULs) and Generational Leaders (GLs). ULs ran threads and polls, while GLs oversaw the progress over each generation of CAPs. In theory, this works well. However, moving forward, GLs are really not necessary, especially if ULs' work is drastically reduced to only considering the inclusion of new Generation 8 moves that maintain each CAPs power level and NOT competitive updates, ability changes, move additions and removals, and movepool revamps. Thus, leadership can just be comprised of a team of ULs, with the CAP Moderation team to ensure the process moves smoothly. Furthermore, with ULs' workload reduced so much, ULs can be opened to newer users that want a taste of a leadership position without the super high stakes of TLTing.

Now, for timing. Because we've reduced the scope of Updates as a whole, we can feasibly instate a rigid schedule for this project to ensure that this project doesn't drag on. First, there will be a few days period of UL signups, and a one-day poll to elect 7 ULs. For 4 weeks, each UL will post a thread for each CAP; the order of the CAPs will be based on chronology (e.g. the first 7 CAPs will be the first 7 threads). Within each thread, for 6 days, potential Generation 8 move additions will be considered. A hard deadline at the end of the 6 days will be maintained to ensure the project is finished without dragging on. 6 days should be sufficient time to discuss given the reduced scope of the project. The last day of the week will be dedicated to any polls required from the thread, and for the UL to write the OP of the next week's update thread. ULs will direct the CAP Moderation Team on what moves need to be polled, and the standard voting procedure will occur. Move additions will be polled if the intelligent community consensus (ICC) is split, but ULs will strike down any moves that raise the Pokemon's power level, as defined earlier. Moves that do not raise the CAP's power level can be allowed without polling if ICC is in favor of the move or dismissed if ICC is not in favor of the move.

This schedule has its advantages. It ensures that the entirety of CAP Updates will take about 5 weeks, which ensures that CAP27 can begin early in Generation 8, unlike Pajantom, which began near the end of SM and was released in USUM. It also ensures that discussion will not stall out. If there is a concrete deadline, there discussion will have to happen within that time period. Finally, the last Updates Process took so long that some ULs became tired of their position; with the shorter timeframe, the ULs and also the overall community are far less likely to experience burnout.

A bulleted summary:
  • Generation 8 CAP Updates must take a shorter amount of time so that we may begin CAP27 in a timely manner and avoid another situation like Pajantom's
  • Generation 8 CAP Updates should roughly maintain a Pokemon's power level
    • This means that coverage, roles, utility moves, and power behind their stab moves should stay roughly the same
      • Moves that increase a Pokemon's power level are:
        • Noticeably more powerful STAB moves or coverage moves
        • New coverage types
        • Role defining moves such as pivoting, recovery, hazard control, status control, etc.
    • To this end, only new Generation 8 moves should be considered for Generation 8 Updates. Nerfs, unnecessary buffs, movepool revamps, ability changes, stat changes, and moves from previous gens should not be considered for Updates
      • Any new moves will be added in the most logical place
        • TM List and Tutor Moves are considered first
        • Egg Moves and Level Up are considered next
  • Leadership should be comprised of a team of ULs; there will be no GLs
    • ULs are responsible for writing the OP of each Update thread and determining the ICC at the end of each thread
    • The CAP Moderation team is responsible for overseeing the process, start polls using the ULs' slates, and end polls using standard CAP voting procedure
  • Time Table
    • Elect 7 Update Leaders
      • Nominate for a few days, poll in 1 day
    • For 4 weeks
      • Each UL creates a thread for a CAP
      • Potential move additions / balance concerns addressed in the first 6 days
        • ULs should disallow moves that massively increase the Pokemon's power level
        • Otherwise, ULs can allow moves that the ICC favors, disallow moves that the ICC does not, and should poll moves that the ICC is split on
      • The last day is reserved for polling and for the UL to write the next CAP's OP
        • Each UL will give a slate to the mods for the poll, if needed
    • Total time
      • About 5 weeks
    • Advantages of a rigid time table
      • Ensures that discussion moves along
      • We don't delay CAP27 anymore than we have to
      • Less burnout among ULs and in community
 
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Oh boy here we go, I'll start this one off by poking the bear, I really wanna get things cleared up and ironed out before we start rolling.

Firstly, I'd just like to give my take on why I think updates took so long, and it certainly was not because of the competitive updates. It had to do with the leaders and how hard said leaders actually worked on their projects. There was, to put it briefly, a large imbalance of the amount of work people did. Let's be real since we all saw what happened in the updates, Krazycake and our de facto metagame leader at the time did what 3 ? Snake also went on to do more than most leaders, and darkslay dying (where have i seen that before) certainly did not help. I don't really think the fact that they were competitive had anything to do with them dragging on, longer? Sure. Being the cause of why it took several months ? Absolutely not. I think the proposed schedule, if adhered to, and properly pushed along by heavy moderation would be quite fine. With a clear schedule laid out, people would also have no excuse for not getting their discussion points in, thus not causing the process to drag. If you want to cut the scope, sure, there's nothing wrong with lessening the workload (such as cutting out entire movepool submissions), but dont blame the scope for the issues.

Now I'd like to address this statement on only adding moves from the newest generation, as well as the statement on excluding newly added TMs and Tutor moves that were previously not because thats "just too bad" the cap didnt get them:

They have all had the chance to get moves from each generation, including Generation 7. This includes move tutor moves added later in the generation (think USUM tutors) - even if the move tutor moves' access is new, all those moves existed for the entirety of the generation. Furthermore, we shouldn't have to continuously check move tutor moves every time they are released. Thus, the only truly new moves are the ones added in Generation 8.

First, let's address the second bold statement. It seems to me to just be laziness. These things change all the time and have effects on our mons and the flavor aspects of them. To simply not want to check them is lazy; they change with each release and cap need to be up to date with these changing lists to be in flavor with the other 800+ pokemon.

Now to address the first, and arguably larger, bold statement. Not adding old moves as new tutors change is wrong. Let's take for example the big elephant in the room, Tomohawk. Gen 8 added 300+ mons that learned defog that had never been considered for defog before: several fairy types and nearly every flying type in the game. To simply avoid adding this would be purposefully ignoring flavor, to avoid placing it up to poll at all would be ignorance to the flavor rules of the game itself. I'm not going to sit here and go through every cap and what flavor it should or shouldnt get as this isnt the place for it, but its important to address Tomohawk. If it were to be decided, sure, but to simply not add older moves that were added to tutors and significantly changed the moves access would be preposterous. Now this takes me to my next point, which will be focused on snake and cbrevan's point about maintaining power levels, which will be posted below.

As such, we should do our best to keep the post-update capabilities of CAPs as similiar to their pre-update capabilities as close as possible.

I feel that this should be far less concrete of a point in these newer updates. If something fits the cap flavor wise, take tomohawk and getting defog from the USUM tutor, it shouldn't be hindered because we want to purposefully limit its capabilities in the competitive scene. If something fits, it should be fit in; it should not be avoided simply because the community in a competitive scene, in blunt terms, does not want to deal with it. We should strive to keep these projects in line flavor wise with the rest of the game, and not have any obvious sore thumbs simply because we want to hard cap viability based on previous viability. Hard capping based on previous viability makes no sense anyway because we should, as snake suggested, be putting these mons in a power vacuum; however, the only way to particularly determine what "pre-update capabilities" are, and if newer flavor additions even FIT with pre-update capabilities, you would have to take it in a relative sense to what it did in a previous, outdated metagame. This might just be an old man yelling at clouds moment, but i'd like to have all my ducks in a row and marching along to the same beat, i don't want one sticking out because we felt that a flavor change would alter its viability on the whole. If it alters it, it shouldn't be a big deal. Game Freak adds new dimensions to their pokemon by adding these new tutors and they drastically change how the game is played (ie: a billion new options of hazard removal, which cap has been consistently adding anyway as every damn mon gets spin anyway). If Game freak can give 300 pokemon a certain dimension, we should not let 1 of ours be left out because "oh no its gonna be better than it was before we touched it." To close this i'll take a quote from this post itself, "Last, moves should be added mainly based on appearance compared to real Pokemon and should fit the CAP's flavor identity."

In short, the competitive aspect of updates is not the real problem, as much as it was the actual leaders, and you could add those back if you see fit (I've already spoken to snake previous about possible things to do with useless cap mons). New tutor moves, egg moves, and technical machines should always be evaluated, and should not be excluded. Flavor should be kept consistent regardless of other factors.
 
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jas61292

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I almost entirely agree with what snake suggested with regard to the scope of updates and how they should be done. My only real comment would be that I do not totally agree with the following:
To this end, "power level" shall be defined in a vacuum unrelated to any metagame, and based solely of what a CAP is capable of with the current tools it has.
I think what this is missing is any analysis of the CAP relative to the tools available. CAP pokemon as they are were build with regard to the norms of what was available. Failing to give a Pokemon something that they clearly would have gotten if made in the new generation just because it changes their power level is doing a disservice to them, in my opinion. What I mean by this is something like, if gen 8 introduced a new move that is like Fire Blast, but Dark type, and just like Fire Blast, pretty much every Pokemon of that type gets it. If we are looking at whether or not to add something under a framework of "power level in a vacuum" then a boost from the 80 power of Dark Pulse to the 110 power of this new move is very significant (twice the boost of the Ice Punch -> Icicle Crash example you use), and would be considered something to avoid. But if it is a universal move of its type, every other mon around it is getting that same boost. Furthermore on the only mon where this specific example is relevant, Voodoom, I don't think there would be any concern of us breaking things.

Basically, what I'm getting at is that, well, as you say, "moves should be added mainly based on appearance compared to real Pokemon and should fit the CAP's flavor identity." I just disagree with the one word that came right before that quote: last. I think this kind of thing should be the first, consideration, and that we should only really be looking at balance concerns at all if something is glaringly off. That does not mean we should just go wild and give out whatever we want that is new. I made my example based off of Fire Blast for a reason. Its a move that you don't need to debate whether a mon of its type should have. Contrary to the case mentioned about Krilowatt, where Hydro Pump, while a similar move, is not really univesal. If something is a big power boost and we don't have reason to give it, then sure, by all means we should say no. But if it is a logical move to give, I don't think a power boost in and of itself should be a barrier to us giving something out. Power creep to existing mons is just something that can happen. So long as we have a process in place to nerf if we go too far, I wouldn't be too worried about putting balance first.
 

LucarioOfLegends

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Oh here we go.

I have vivid memories of Gen 7 CAP Updates from years ago, and I think there were a few key problems with it.

- Each individual thread took a lot of time in its own. Usually some sort of discussion for what should be changed, possible ability discussion, possible ability polls, move discussions, movepool submissions, movepool polls, and finally ending conclusions. This was way too longer and considering that we did this for almost every thread hurt it, especially since we did the competitive stuff along with it as well.
- Certain Mods disappeared during the project, most notably DarkSlay. This is something that shouldn't happen again.
- There was a thread for each mon. I actually see this as a negative because it creates thread fatigue, and there were very short threads such as Crucibelle, where absolutely nothing was decided to be added, and Kerfluffle was a purely a forgotten move previously. This was something unavoidable in the age of competitive updates, but should probably be addressed here.
- All the competitive stuff. Fucked with the balance of a bunch of stuff, made the process much longer, and created SS Nect (although we could not have known it would have that effect at the time). I fully agree that this should be done away with and be done as a purely flavor process.

With all that said I will have some weird things to say.

I genuinely do not think we should have a separate thread for each CAP in the update, but instead should have a thread based on each generation instead (with the possibility of splitting Gen 4 into two threads since its roster is very large). On that train of thought I also think ULs should be removed instead for general Generational Leaders since the threads are to be split into generations. Doing now 28 seperate threads will absolutely kill user retention and participation (while also cluttering our main forum page). Even with the proposed 7 ULs in the initial post, each UL will be making 4 threads which cannot be done all at the same time, creating unnecessary wait and wasted time even with the rigid time table.

By condensing it into threads based on generation, we can cover more Pokemon all at once. Previous CAP Updates mandated full threads due to the competitive nature and thus having to go into heavier discussion about each mon. Due to the shift in focus for these updates there will be much shorter discussions in the ways of flavor. Obviously this could overtax the GLs, but I think the general influx of moves will be shorter and a lot of moves will either be signatures heavily exclusive to the mon in question that we shouldn't be giving out like candy, or will be much more universal and be able to get more consensus easily. Obviously there will be exceptions and those can still be polled, but this is a method to better address the poll fatigue I imagine a lot of us got in the previous updates process. I would much rather have 4-5 threads instead of 28.

Also fall into agreement with jas in regards to flavor precendence for newly added moves. Obviously I agree that we shouldn't be drastically changing CAPs with a move that would greatly effect their play and possibly break them a la Phantom Force, but we should not be completely denying moves that have heavy flavor precendence simply because they will effect the abilities and possible competitive viability of a Pokemon. Using jas's example, if the newly revealed Nega Beam (patent pending) is a stronger, less accurate Dark Pulse that 98% of all Dark-types get and Voodoom has no good flavorful reason not to get it, we shouldn't be denying it because its a stronger move than Dark Pulse that has chance for actual usage. Flavor should absolutely be first in this scenario, as the flavor gives us no reason to not give it even if it has a competitive influence.

Now to get into the messy territory of Tutors, TMs, and Defog (oh my!)

For the only time in the history of the forseeable universe, actually agree with Snorlax in the way in regards to Tutors. I do believe that Move Tutors should be opened up, but specifically only the moves from older generation that are now accessible (a la Ally Switch and Defog) as well as moves introduced in Gen 7 that are now in Tutors (Stomping Tantrum, Laser Focus, Liquidation and most importantly Throat Chop). I think that removing the moves from the pool just because they were previously available is ignorant of reasons they were excluded in the first place in the ways of current move exclusivity and general move rarity at the time of the process. I think especially Defog is an important point because it has gotten nearly universal usage amongst Flying-types and general winged/wind based Pokemon, and there are few reasons to not exclude them from our resident birdmons (Objection due to intial process exclusion should be fine though). Throat Chop is even more baffling because it was initial only usable by exactly two mons in Incineroar and Sneasle, but Tutors opened up its pool gigantically for a number of old and new mons alike. Even if Gen 6 and behind moves are excluded I think there is a very fair argument on the subject of Gen 7 moves that are now tutors should be opened up for inclusion if they were intially excluded for rarity reasons.

Even if Tutors are not opened, I implore the process to at least update Tutors to be flavorfully consistent with moves gotten through other means. (ie if Stratagem gets Laser Focus through its other means then it should be reasonable for it to get it through Tutors as well and should have tutors updated according)

Another weird gray area is TMs, as Gen 7 showed that moves that were never TMs/HMs in previous generations could suddenly become them now, especially in regards to Leech Life. Moves that were never considered for various reason could now be opened up for possible inclusion. It largely depends on Tutor legality as they are a similar scenario in a regard, but I still feel old moves that are newly minted TMs in SwSh should still be considered going into a CAP's movepool.

My goal with this post was never to do what Game Freak is doing, always adding older moves to older mons, buffing stats, and changing around abilities. If we opened those floodgates we'd be here until Gen 9. But I do think there should be some level of leniency with the addition of older moves to better mirror Game Freak's process, and to better give our mons natural moveset progression, which I think can be done well with observation by unlocking Tutors and TMs additions. CAP updates is still a more flavorful process, and older mons always get older moves from a generational shift thanks to tutors, so hopefully this is a good compromise in that regard.

Everything else I mostly agree with, although I haven't checked them as extensively as these points above.
 

Birkal

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I haven't posted here because I don't have much to say. I was not around during the last generational updates. From what I can tell as an outside viewer, a lot of CAP veterans seem pretty critical of how things were run. It sounds like any sort of change would be an improvement. I personally agree with everything snake said, with both amendments / clarifications by jas61292 and Snorlax in the way being added. I mentioned on Discord that it might be a good idea to have a single individual residing over the entire process, just to be making sure that power levels stay relatively the same between all Pokemon. I could write up something official if people think it should be added. Otherwise snake_rattler we should plan on moving forward with something soon here.
 
It's been a long time everyone! Now that we're getting closer to Gen 8, I thought I'd throw my hat in the ring.

I agree with basically everything that's been said. In terms of the main suggestions, I like Lucario's suggestion to focus move additions in threads based on Generation as opposed to individual Pokemon threads. I think reducing clutter is a great point, and will likely make each of the threads feel more active. It may also allow for all of them to be considered simultaneously, with each thread being able to be left up for longer to allow for discussion and eventually voting.

I think that Jas' suggestion about distribution is important. As much as we don't want to necessarily be modifying the power level of our CAPs too drastically. If there are moves that are being universally added to types such as Scald was in Gen V, it should be worth including as this is primarily a flavor exercise.

Another thing to consider is that it may be worth opening up the UL or GL positions prior to the release of the game, so that as soon as all the data is in with release the process can be started immediately. Meaning that a CAP is being made 4 weeks after the start of the generation as opposed to 5. That said this is getting close to Christmas time, so it is likely that a break will be had regardless.
 
I agree with Luc about making four generational threads, rather than giving each CAP a separate thread. As Steak said, this can help to reduce clutter, but I wonder how we would handle movepool submissions per CAP, particularly for the first eleven CAPs from 2007-2010.

I also agree with Jasnumbers regarding flavor-based distribution, since we have a different process for competitive nerfs. We don't need to give siginficant power jumps to our existing CAPs, especially with the whole roster mechanic going on in SWSH.
 
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Jho

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Alright, we now know that there is a metric load of changes happening this gen; much more than we previously thought. Moves are being cut, moves are being removed from the game and a whole heap of TMs have been slashed completely changing a lot of Pokemons learn sets. We need to get ahead of this and decide how we want to proceed rather quickly imo, or we risk taking months and months on generational updates like we did last time, which really ate into and stifled our meta development, as well as delayed the first cap of the generation, something which I know a lot of people are extremely excited for after our long hiatus.

I still completely agree with the sentiment of Snakes proposed process, however; after going through the leaks it does not seem feasible to maintain every caps viability level exactly with how much has changed, so I personally am open to pro-concept, pro-flavour competitive moves being added to maintain consistency with the games if a situation arises for that and its not too overbearing. Snakes proposed plan is extremely time efficient and a very effective way to get this done quickly, and I believe we should follow it.

I would really rather keep threads for each Pokemon as it helps to keep discussion uncluttered and easy to follow. Doing it in "batches" of 4 or so helps keep the forum clean and will help focus discussion as well, avoiding the same failings as last-gen in which not all CaPs got as much discussion as the others

Another thing to consider is that it may be worth opening up the UL or GL positions prior to the release of the game so that as soon as all the data is in with release the process can be started immediately.
I heavily agree and think we should start this ASAP, we now know most of the data so people are starting to get ideas of what they would like to see. Opening up GL/UL submissions as soon as possible lets us start as soon as the game starts and the data mines are confirmed.
 
Oh boy, the news has been coming in hot and really raised some interesting questions regarding the update process as Jho has said. I think to avoid falling into the trap of discussing the competitive merits too signficantly, it will be necessary to stress that the updates be centred primarily around the concept of 'consistency', and should reflect the kinds of changes to move pools that are being seen with real Pokemon.

I still completely agree with the sentiment of Snakes proposed process, however; after going through the leaks it does not seem feasible to maintain every caps viability level exactly with how much has changed, so I personally am open to pro-concept, pro-flavour competitive moves being added to maintain consistency with the games if a situation arises for that and its not too overbearing. Snakes proposed plan is extremely time efficient and a very effective way to get this done quickly, and I believe we should follow it.
I'd like to second this. I think a principle that we should aim for is to primarily restrict new move pool additions to those moves that have become available as Technical Records or Technical Machines. By that same token, it will also be necessary to remove moves from move pools that are no longer TMs for flavour reasons. If a move is removed in this way, where relevant, depending perhaps on how competitively important that move is to the CAP, it may be worth thinking about including flavour moves from outside the TR and TM pool to bring in as substitutes.

An example might be the loss of Toxic on Arghonaut. In this case, while a nerf, Toxic is not a staple move on Arghonaut and doesn't really need replacing. The loss of Heal Block on Pajantom, however, is quite substantial as it is a staple on one of its main sets, and as such will likely need to gain a new tool to compensate.

I would really rather keep threads for each Pokemon as it helps to keep discussion uncluttered and easy to follow. Doing it in "batches" of 4 or so helps keep the forum clean and will help focus discussion as well, avoiding the same failings as last-gen in which not all CaPs got as much discussion as the others
I now agree that generation threads are not feasible. Each CAP will need substantial discussion and burying them next to each other will not facilitate this.

I think as far as how each thread may run based on the now expanded scope, is to start with the GL/UL identifying the moves in existing move sets that will need to be removed for consistency (such as Toxic which has up to this point been ubiquitous as a TM) to open up discussion about whether or not any of these moves need to be preserved, and subsequently where they can be balanced into learn sets. Following this it discussion about which new TMs and TRs could be added to the CAP in terms of flavour and consistency should be had. Finally the GL/ULs pose can pose the question whether or not any existing moves not on the TM or TR list need to be added to compensate for the removal of existing tools, with the direct aim of addressing flavor and the CAP's concept.

This strikes me as the easiest way to structure the consistency updates because move pool removals are a necessity in terms of consistency, while the other two stages can easily descend into discussions about competitiveness. Prioritizing the move pool removals provides a focus to movepool additions, as it allows them to effectively be for flavour and where deemed necessary, compensating for removals.
 
One of the key issues coming from the leaks is the removal of moves. I'm on board for an ideal of minimality, and (in a sense) lack of creativity. However, it seems like for realism to be maintained, movepool "nerfs" will need to happen. Some will be automatic, for those moves not available in SWiSH. Other removal is not mandatory, but in order for CAPs to look realistic, they cannot keep all their moves. Addition of new moves may in extreme cases be necessary, but I would strongly urge for caution in its use.

I agree with the proposed timeline for the updates, and would suggest the following guidelines for movepool changes.

Movepool Removal Guidelines:
For a move to be removed from a CAP's movepool, it must be
  1. Lost by more than one or two Pokemon in the generation change
  2. Not crucial to the concept of the CAP in question
Any move fulfilling these two guidelines ought to be up for removal, and chosen for removal depending on flavor. If flavor considerations are unclear, then gameplay considerations may be taken into consideration.
Movepool Addition Guidelines:
For a move to be added to a CAP's movepool, it must
  1. Be gained by many Pokemon during the generation change
  2. Fit with the move's distribution
  3. Not significantly increase power from generation 7
  4. Not interfere with the CAP's concept (and guidelines for allowed moves during the movepool phase)
Movepool additions must be actively suggested and justified, and should have a stricter standard than movepool removals. CAPs who are losing important tools in the removal stage will have more consideration for movepool addition.
 
Other removal is not mandatory, but in order for CAPs to look realistic, they cannot keep all their moves.
is to start with the GL/UL identifying the moves in existing move sets that will need to be removed for consistency (such as Toxic which has up to this point been ubiquitous as a TM) to open up discussion about whether or not any of these moves need to be preserved, and subsequently where they can be balanced into learn sets
As far as I can tell, there haven't been many moves that have been removed from existing Pokemon's movepools aside from those which have been cut from the game entirely. I also don't think we need to remove moves that were previously TMs, but no longer are. After all, wouldn't these moves be transferable on a Pokemon from Generation 7 to Sword and Shield?

The only real notable losses from the movepool for our Pokemon are Return/Frustration, Pursuit, Hidden Power, Heal Block, and Flame Burst. Return/Frustration aren't really necessary to replace, as Caribolt has access to Body Slam and Double Edge. Pursuit has nothing that can replace its function, nor does Heal Block. Our Pokemon will just have to deal with this. Thus, the only ones we may need to consider replacing are Hidden Power and Flame Burst. This does NOT mean we should give all of our Pokemon every coverage type, but if a Pokemon was intended to use a specific type of Hidden Power during our initial process, and calculations were done to allow for this, we may want to consider giving a similar move to achieve the same function. As for Flame Burst, I think we should allow discussion on whether or not Jumbao should get a replacement. If another move can be argued to be important for a Pokemon's function and has been removed, then we can also have a discussion during updates on possibly replacing it.

Aside from how to deal with the removal of moves, I agree with the previously stated sentiments that we should allow for the consideration of new TM/TR/Move Tutor moves in our update process, seeing as many moves have expanded in their distribution as a result, and thus may be appropriate to add to our CAPs on a case-by-case basis in updates based on ICC. I feel like the possibility of raising the power level or power ceiling of a CAP in the new generation is not too big of a deal, assuming the power level and power ceiling of many other Pokemon has raised in general, thus keeping CAPs' abilities relative to their environment.
 
As far as I can tell, there haven't been many moves that have been removed from existing Pokemon's movepools aside from those which have been cut from the game entirely. I also don't think we need to remove moves that were previously TMs, but no longer are. After all, wouldn't these moves be transferable on a Pokemon from Generation 7 to Sword and Shield?
One thing to consider with your point, is that there is no way to transfer up to Sword and Shield from Gen 7 for at least a couple of months, which means we are in a situation quite comparable to X and Y regarding the accessibility of moves in a competitive standpoint. Pokemon like Scizor who didn't have access to Bug Bite or Superpower until transfers opened up changed quite significantly in terms of their viability afterwards.

The difference with this situation now is, we have seen certain moves removed completely and messages saying to replace this move, and unfortunately have no way of confirming if this will also occur with moves that cannot naturally be learnt by that Pokemon in the game. For example if we transferred a current Bisharp set with Knock Off and Pursuit, we know for a fact that Pursuit will prompt the replacement message, but it's unsure what will happen to Knock Off.

With this in mind, as far as the CAP meta, for moves that they no longer legally have access to like say Toxic and Roost, if they are deemed viable for the Pokemon we will need to discuss how we go about including them, which is a challenge until we hear what happens with transfer moves. In any case, I think that the easiest solution would be incorporate moves like these that are considered worth keeping into the Pokemon's learn set elsewhere. This allows us to circumvent the possibilities that transferred moves that the Pokemon can't naturally learn in SwSh aren't compatible, while also allowing for the move to be used in a CAP meta before Pokemon Home comes out.
 
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LucarioOfLegends

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I thought it would be nice for this to simmer a little bit in the back of the head before I post something on it, because wow.

My initial proposition for the lower number of threads (about 5) was done as a way to address a problem I was seeing of clutter being added to the main forums which would swamp the sub, and the bigger possible complaint of wasting time on CAPs what would have very little to no changes after a day of discussion, which would likely prove to be true considering the generally lower number of new moves of decent distribution added this generation, which were the main options of the previously proposed update process (Breaking Swipe, Life Dew, and Body Press are the big ones, and Steel Beam is near-universal among steels; exclusive moves are absolutely up for debate if you are not trying to grab a legend exclusive one, but considering that they are not even distributed at all as Egg Moves like some in gen 7 were I think the argument would be much harder). In short, I thought having 28 threads for each mon was a giant waste of time even under the schedule simply because there would be a boatload of mons that would barely need discussion.

That is no longer the case, and I was stupid for thinking that things would be that simple.

As many of us know the situation thanks to the move purge got a lot harder. Two very important moves got cut from the dex in Hidden Power and Pursuit as well as numerous other niche ones like Heal Block. This has vastly thrown off a lot of the CAPs power wise; Pajantom, whilst unfortunately losing Heal Block and its subsequent RWW set, doesn't have to worry at all about pursuit trappers and can trap what it wants without restriction, Colossoil lost one of its best tools in Pursuit, Jumbao lost an important coverage move in Flame Burst, and as an example (sigh) Plasmanta lost important Hidden Power coverage that let it actually fight decently some of its annoyances.

While I am pretty much stating the obvious, my point is that there is a lot more to discuss here than just what new 3 gen 8 moves can we give it. We also have to re-center some of these caps a little bit, and the introduction of more TMs and TRs (more on those in a sec) absolutely does not make any cap flavoring trivial like I initially thought it would. We absolutely should stick to the schedule snake_rattler proposed in the op, as it will be able to keep thinks going straight and on time, and considering we will have a lot to discuss we need to keep things moving for it.

I think a good point is brought up about how transferable moves will interact with Pokemon that can no longer get said transferable moves in this game, and how Pokemon Home will effect it (aka Knock Off Bisharp). I think right now the simplest solution is treat them as if they are gone for good at the moment, and trim down stuff accordingly to flavor purposes. So if Toxic is only available to Poison-types and a select few more, we give it to our poison-types and discuss justification of adding it on the others. No good justification, no Toxic. I think this would keep solid parallel to the game, and if transfers works like last game we can just revert it, but I'd rather not say completely one way or the other. Give thoughts.

Finally a real quick no-duh but obviously with how much TMs and TRs have added newer, higher distribution to moves previously very hard to get, I think we should open up past gen moves for Updates additions, although a few things to keep in mind is that we have to make it clear that we are not explicitly buffing mons for this, and that concept and flavor comes first in this regard. Obviously we won't catch everything and hindsight is 20/20 but if something is going to break the mon like Phantom Force did on Nect, even with solid flavor justification it cannot have it as in that scenario we still value the health of the metagame. Pretty much we don't want to be going to Nerfing Process every two weeks but we don't want to completely choke new flavor opportunities.

tl;dr: We should stick to the snake schedule cause its efficient and unlikely to tangent and my previous reasons for being against them are gone, movepools should be slimmed to reflect the changes and transfered moves don't exist until proven they do, and opening past gen moves with new TM/R capability would be cool as long as we don't break the mon.
 

Bughouse

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I don't have a ton to add here beyond all the ideas everyone has already put forward. But I generally agree with the OP and jas's perspective about balance/power level, with the caveat that it turns out Gen 8 ended up having way more substantive changes than we originally thought, which will make these updates all the harder.

All I can really stress is deciding on a timeline for these updates. I'm assuming that CAP will follow in OU's footsteps regarding the Dynamax suspect, so I would suggest that CAP start update threads about two weeks after that suspect ends, if Dynamax is banned, so there's some sense of what the meta will look like. In the case that Dynamax is not banned, perhaps the CAP update threads could immediately be started, since that's then the same metagame everyone has already had available to them for almost a month already.
 

Birkal

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I’ve entrusted reachzero to close up this thread. I believe he is with the general consensus here as of late, but feel free to share any final thoughts you have as we finish this out and get rolling with Gen 8 CAP!
 

cbrevan

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I'm just going to list what changed for move distribution this gen and how the proposed framework could be changed to accommodate them. Others have spoken about this already but I'd like to get my two cents in before the thread closes.

Our first major change is that a number of moves that were available on our CAPs were rendered unavailable in-game this generation. I'm referring to moves such as Pursuit, Hidden Power, and Return/Frustration as moves that are unavailble in-game. A logical amendment to the framework is to mandate the removal of moves that are unavailable from our Pokemon. However, we should also account for the potential desire to replace lost moves with an equivalent alternative when possible. Personally, I can go either way with this, as both leaving moves lost and replacing them have their pros and cons. Whichever way we choose to go, though, should be outlined in the framework as well. This is to ensure that we have updates that are consistent between Pokemon, and also to help streamline the overall process by making a difficult decision more easily answered.

In a similiar vein, we also need to consider Pokemon who rely on moves that remain in the game but could be lost in the generation shift. One example would be Colossoil, who learns Knock Off from a past Gen tutor. A case can be made for removing this move by citing Pokemon such as Weavile, while an equally valid case could be made that we should preserve Knock Off by transferring it to another part of its learnset. Likewise, we face similiar challenges with Toxic and its wide distribution. Personally, I think we should accommodate this generation's trends in move distribution as much as we can, but allow Pokemon to keep moves such as Toxic and Knock Off if they've become pivotal to their function. Whatever we do, we need to have a guideline on how to handle these cases added to the framework, otherwise we stand to have updates that are inconsistent between multiple Pokemon.

Another change we need to address is the introduction of a technical records list that is comprised of 99 competitively viable moves. These can be likened to a comprehensive tutor list, as they have introduced a new venue for Pokemon to learn these moves. The current framework does not mention these moves explicitly, but does technically restrict them by barring the addition of moves that would massively increase a CAP's power level, as it is defined in the OP. The easiest way to account for this is include this Gen TMs and TRs under the list of moves we consider legal to add to a movepool and to follow the guidelines we would use for newly introduced moves.
 

reachzero

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We have consensus on all the broad strokes for updates, so I'll summarize briefly what we're going to do:

--We are updating each CAP in separate threads, in batches of four, each led by an Update Leader.

--The first order of business for each update is to discuss flavor/consistency based move removals, with the exception of moves critical to the concept (e.g. Spirit Shackle on Pajantom).

--Removals that are controversial will be subject to a poll.

--Move additions are the next order of business, with the goal of maintaining flavor/consistency with the other additions in Generation 8. Moves that are clearly too powerful may be banned from discussion by the UL. Controversial moves may be subject to a poll.

--Competitive moves added in an update are given strictly on the basis of flavor/consistency with other comparable cases, not according to metagame viability.

--We will be following snake_rattler's schedule proposal, beginning immediately after the resolution of the Dynamax Suspect test (since that has extremely far-reaching impact on which moves are considered competitive).

Thank you to everyone who weighed in!
 
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