BW OU's future: Shadow Tag vote and upcoming changes [SHADOW TAG BANNED]

The BW Council has collected and reviewed the survey sent out a few weeks ago; responses are publicized here for transparency.

The trouble with generalizing the results is due to the drastically differing replies. Comments ran the gamut from stating Gothitelle's Obvious Brokenness to its Practical Uselessness, meaning, once again, the BW playerbase remains indeterminate about its tiering wants.

That being said, the council recognizes the pro-ban lean in the survey. Additionally, there is a plethora of precedent-based justifications and understandably wack past policy which informed many users' responses.

TDK referenced the ease-of-access to reqs having won minimal games, which we will keep on the radar moving forward too. We also would note that this was simply to garner information from solid BW players. The following votes will be more exclusive.

So, this is all to say that we will be conducting a vote on Shadow Tag in order to address our previous wrongs. We realize the uncertainty surrounding the Shadow Tag / Arena Trap logics and would be remiss to prevent this vote from occurring. In truth, BW has been the most experimental generation tiering-wise. The introduction of team preview, weather-based play / power spikes, and a new wave of subsequent tiering ideologies meant BW weathered (lol!) a maelstrom of unforeseen debates. In return, the tier also suffered from constant uncertainty, criticism, and asymmetrical tiering directions.

The BW Council has had to work from shambles, gluing together a rather hamfisted tier in the process. In order to finalize and ensure the best future for Gen 5, we will soon be making changes to our council by inviting more top BW players to shape our philosophies moving forward. We hope to gather consensus of the tier's issues and craft a unified vision that will 1) satisfy the playerbase and 2) ameliorate tensions surrounding BW tiering policy. More details of this will come in future weeks.

For now, we will be inviting the follow users to participate in the Shadow Tag BW OU vote. The voter pool will be slightly different from the survey, with 5 wins or more and a 50% SPL X win rate being needed instead of 3.

BW Cup: dice, Twixtry, Raiza, Kingler12345. Roseybear, M Dragon. Zokuru, elodin

SPL (with 5 or more games and 50% or more wins): SoulWind, FLCL, We Three Kings, Ojama, Finchinator

STour (top 12 in BW points each s27 or 26)

st27: Finchinator, SoulWind, ima, McMeghan, Lavos, St. Tyrannus, Pohjis, Santu, Eternal Spirit, Luigi/Twixtry/Marshall.Law/Zorodark/dice all tied for 10th

st26: Bad Ass, Lavos, LL, FMG, Luigi, Finchinator, SoulWind, mael, Welli0u, Googly, nightcore, FLCL, z0mOG

WCOP (3 games with .500 or better): lax, Finchinator, Asuya, Ace-11, dice, Posho, Sand Castle, SoulWind, McMeghan




PM dice and Finchinator with your votes [Ban Shadow Tag, Do Not Ban Shadow Tag, or Abstain]. The deadline will be midnight ET (-4) on June 24th, with a 60% benchmark required to ban Shadow Tag.

Thank you!
 
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Lavos

Banned deucer.
Blows my mind that this vote's being held now, during Classic AND World Cup playoffs, instead of waiting a month to avoid interfering with any official tournaments. There's been a distinct lack of anything resembling a lively discussion on the subject in months - protracted polls with barely a paragraph's length of answers per person notwithstanding. I'm against the vote and I'd hoped that we'd have learned our lesson by now.
 
gothitelle is not a pokemon that would morph the tier with its absence if banned. there have been several ou suspects that have happened in the midst of a tournament. thank you for your input, and hopefully our future policy decisions will be more well-received to you.
 

Lavos

Banned deucer.
Interesting to claim that Gothitelle is worth a suspect vote but simultaneously won't affect BW OU with its removal. "It's happened before" speaks nothing to the context of said occurences, and your lack of explanation suggests you may be devoid of one. Thank you for your input, and hopefully your future council members will be less trite in their interactions with the fate of a major tier at stake.
 
Why can't the vote just take effect after all ongoing BW OU tours conclude regardless of when it occurs? A similar policy has been enacted in past tours when bans/tier changes* have happened while playoffs are ongoing, with the most recent example being when Defiant Passimian was released in the middle of SPL playoffs, specifically during the semifinals, then wasn't allowed for the duration of the tour.

Edit: The same was also done with the UU Bisharp test in snake ii
 

Finchinator

Treat People With Kindness
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BW Circuit Champion
Blows my mind that this vote's being held now, during Classic AND World Cup playoffs, instead of waiting a month to avoid interfering with any official tournaments.
I understand why people may find the timing to be less than ideal, but we mentioned how it was hard to make progress and decisions due to less than ideal council conditions and how we planned to move forward with a bit of a regrouping of the BW council following this vote. In addition to this and perhaps most importantly, we surveyed the playerbase and not many individuals commented with issues on the timing either. You were included in that, Lavos. In fact, you were also in our chat and whenever you had questions, we did respond to you. To add on to this, if tournament directors wish to lock the tiers in Classic or WCOP playoffs, then they are entitled to do so, much like they did during last Grand Slam. That is their decision, however, not ours.

There's been a distinct lack of anything resembling a lively discussion on the subject in months - protracted polls with barely a paragraph's length of answers per person notwithstanding. I'm against the vote and I'd hoped that we'd have learned our lesson by now.
Outside of the DPP Latias suspect, which involved bringing something back and was spanned over months with lots of players being drawn-in, this process has met or surpassed the standards for any comparable situation. I do believe that the old generation tiering process is suboptimal as a whole, but you cannot genuinely have a problem with this suspect in particular as opposed to the system as a whole. We have been entirely transparent, we have went through a discussion thread, we had a survey open to the playerbase to respond (which we used and discussed, as you saw in our chat), and we acted off of all of the information we had at our disposal. I think there have been missteps in BW tiering as an old generation before and I take responsibility for them, but this is more than justified and due. Again, if you have an issue with old gen tiering in general due to it not having enough room for prolonged discussion, then that is fine and I understand you. However, you cannot reasonably take issue with this and not a plethora of other tieirng decisions, including some that you were involved with firsthand.

Interesting to claim that Gothitelle is worth a suspect vote but simultaneously won't affect BW OU with its removal.
This really does not deserve much of a response because you're twisting words instead of actually arguing anything. However, just to clarify for the sake of even more transparency and openness, Gothitelle does have an impact on the BW OU metagame. dice is trying to say that it will not have such a groundbreaking impact as removing something like weather, Latios, Keldeo, etc. would as they are far more common, fundamental parts of the metagame whereas Gothitelle is just a niche, unhealthy trapper that enables uncompetitive strategy/gameplay, as I outlined in my prior post in the other thread. Lacking substantial usage =/= lacking the potential to be ban or vote worthy -- this is a basic part of tiering that we all understand. Usage can be a factor, but the practical implications of the pokemon in the metagame are what truly matters.

"It's happened before" speaks nothing to the context of said occurences, and your lack of explanation suggests you may be devoid of one. Thank you for your input, and hopefully your future council members will be less trite in their interactions with the fate of a major tier at stake.
I was hoping that my explanation on why I believed Gothitelle was problematic here, my explanation on the process as a whole here, my explanation on how we planned to proceed here, the playerbase's majority input on the subject here, and the in-depth explanation on the state of the council and vote here were all going to be sufficient, but I am sorry that I cannot add a sixth piece of substantial evidence to hyperlink to appease you, Lavos.
 

McMeghan

Dreamcatcher
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I know the people unhappy with the process are usually the first to reply and it often looks as if the way things are handled only meet criticism. Therefore, I'm just posting to throw my support to the way things have been adressed. I pretty much agree with SoulWind when he says in the survey that "no problem as long as the communication between the playerbase and the council keeps going like it has. i also think there's not enough restrictions to vote. too many people that don't play this tier regularly get to vote on them because of this and they dont have a clue of what it means for the tier to ban or not ban things". Not everything is perfect (more on this later) but it's fine as is.

After reading this thread and the answers to the poll, here are some thoughts I want to share:
  • I think Top12 of Smogon Tour points is a bit too generous when it comes to selecting voters. You're pretty much qualified for winning one Smogon Tour. A nice accomplishment but you should need more consistency in the tier. You also need more experience preparing/building in it, and Smogon Tour is probably where that factor is the least represented. My suggestion was going to be to reach a certain threshold but honestly it's very subjective (I had 15 points in mind and looking at it, Top 12 of the last Stours were 13pts+ and 14pts+, a very short difference).
  • I believe only taking qualifiers from the last Smogon Tour might have made more sense. BW from 6+months ago is pretty different from the current tier, especially when it comes to Gothitelle's impact on it.
  • Even if you don't end up positive, building and preparing for 9 weeks of BW, aka the duration of SPL provides a lot more knowledge and insight to the tier than most of the other criteria (especially compared to WCoP and its 3 games, and that's not even discussing the fact that a lot of teams don't slot their best BW player in the generation).
  • Had some concerns regarding the BW Council but it has already been said that things were going to be looked into.
  • TDK is right when he said that the reqs to be part of the survey were too broad but that's also already been dealt with for the vote (which is more important too, so all's good).
I believe things have been handled better and better overtime when it comes to old gen tiering and BW in particular. It's never easy to do so with an old but active generation so props for the good work.
 

Kevin Garrett

is a competitor
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If I’m not mistaken, the question being presented to the group in the survey asked precisely, “Do you believe that Shadow Tag is worthy of a test at this point in time?” 42.8% of the respondents said no. Bypassing a proper test by going straight to a vote requires strong justification and widespread support.

Not only that, but the voting requirements were changed to alternative past qualifiers. This could be an attempt to manipulate the vote toward a favorable outcome by those setting the parameters instead of establishing new qualifiers.

Then again, this has been in the Smogon tiering playbook since 2016: Gather constituents who share a belief, create a closed setting in which a decision is made, and brush off the blow back. Hopefully the players out there can see through this before the point of no return.
 

Finchinator

Treat People With Kindness
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BW Circuit Champion
If I’m not mistaken, the question being presented to the group in the survey asked precisely, “Do you believe that Shadow Tag is worthy of a test at this point in time?” 42.8% of the respondents said no. Bypassing a proper test by going straight to a vote requires strong justification and widespread support.
There is no such thing as a proper test on something that is not being dropped down in an old generation (see: DPP Latias as an example of something being dropped down). The practical implications of that question were for a vote and this was pretty straightforward -- everyone on the council was on terms with this being the case. This process is as close to an old generation formal suspect test as you will get on something in post-BW2 BW tiering historically, too, seeing as we had a lengthy discussion thread followed by a survey followed by a council discussion. These measures in tandem are as much (or more than) any council has done for any "test" (vote) besides the DPP Latias example. This same phrasing was used during the previous exit survey and other similar questionnaires sent out in different tiers, too. I want to say this in the least off-putting and most inclusive way possible as you have done nothing wrong whatsoever, but I think you being removed a bit from the community causes this confusion. There was no intent to try and game the system or manipulate opinions here. It is simply the case that there really is no formal suspect test procedure here beyond the steps we took that ultimately leads to this vote.

Not only that, but the voting requirements were changed to alternative past qualifiers. This could be an attempt to manipulate the vote toward a favorable outcome by those setting the parameters instead of establishing new qualifiers.
You realize that the only change was one that TDK, one of the two people who benefited from the more inclusive survey, himself said should be in place because only playing 3 games in BW during SPL is not sufficient in his eyes. The only thing different between the survey and the vote was that you had to play 5 games, which is the same as prior votes by the way, in SPL BW instead of just 3. McMeghan and others even agree with this logic and specifically pointed out TDK's remarks in the survey, too. Playing a mere 3 games is a small amount and we wanted the survey to be more inclusive so we allowed it, but there was backlash so we went back to our old methods. If you think this was some voter suppression tactic or manipulative device, then I think you have an unrealistic perspective on the situation and should take a look into the historical requirements and the points I just brought up.

Then again, this has been in the Smogon tiering playbook since 2016: Gather constituents who share a belief, create a closed setting in which a decision is made, and brush off the blow back. Hopefully the players out there can see through this before the point of no return.
Sparsely used conspiracy theories are a sign of an unhealthy theorization. If you want to look to nature for parallels, the mutation of social justice warriors that causes anarchy against the establishment increases resistance to common sense. Remove these aspects and you have a very stagnant, vulnerable situation for the metagame where the checks and balances of logical tiering processes fall out of favor, potentially resulting in a worse overall situation for the tier.
 

Kevin Garrett

is a competitor
is a Top Tutor Alumnusis a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Site Staff Alumnusis an Artist Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnusis the Smogon Tour Season 12 Championis a Past SPL Champion
Being disconnected from the community for an extended time isn't entirely a negative. It allows you to appreciate a broader outlook, looking past particular agendas. I wasn’t going to participate in a test, but that’s how it was presented and I find it odd that the only explanation you provided is essentially (paraphrasing), “because it has been done this way.” Perhaps it is time to rethink the way things have been done. Marginalizing my post as conspiracy alarming won’t give players comprehensive justification of a ban that has ample logical dissent, most elaborately detailed by Lavos.
 
yup,get rid of this mon,its been taking wcop by storm.

Sparsely used conspiracy theories are a sign of an unhealthy theorization. If you want to look to nature for parallels, the mutation of social justice warriors that causes anarchy against the establishment increases resistance to common sense. Remove these aspects and you have a very stagnant, vulnerable situation for the metagame where the checks and balances of logical tiering processes fall out of favor, potentially resulting in a worse overall situation for the tier.
bravo,bravo. nail meet head.

is magnezone on the council's dinner plate? can we take him with gothitelle? the argument is trapping is uncompetitive, right? therefore magnezone is uncompetitive, right? ban the boy.
 
hi folks, the votes are finalized with the results as follows:

ban: Zokuru, Roseybear, Bad Ass, ima, Ace-11, lax, McMeghan, Pohjis, Asuya, dice, Luigi, FMG, Mannat (LL), Finchinator, z0mOG, We Three Kings, Santu, Posho, Ojama (19)

do not ban: M Dragon, nightcore, Marshall.Law, SoulWind, Raiza, Lavos, FLCL, Twixtry, elodin (9)

abstain: ZoroDark, Kingler12345, Welli0u, St. Tyrannus, Eternal Spirit (5)

did not vote: mael, Googly, Sand Castle (3)

which reaches the 60% threshold to be banned.

thus, shadow tag is now banned in BW OU. Zarel The Immortal if someone could implement this that'd be dope, thank you.

future details regarding the bw council will be posted soon, so be on the look out. thanks for participating!
 

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