Everyone Remembers Their First Time

Triangles

Big Stew
is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Past SPL Champion
World Defender
Whether you are a seasoned veteran or a young guy in his prime on the tour scene, everybody remembers their big team tournament debut, SPL or WCoP. This thread is for people to share their memories, tell an interesting story about their first time on the Pokemon big stage. For the young guys, you will also learn the pleasures of reading a good old fashioned battle log.

My debut game was in SPL 5. I had been picked up at midseason by BKC's Scooters, as they had traded the then 2-2 and inconsistent seeming MajinTupacZ away to the Cryos for Vinc2612 and 8K, so needed a RSE replacement. Majin went on to go 6-1 and looked dominant on his new team, but that is another story. In Week 5 I got the start immediately, and my opponent was the 0-4 MarceloDK.

https://pastebin.com/bqkiDHSi

I decided to select my favourite and most trusted Mixmence offense that I'd shamelessly jacked from French ladder hero and tennis enthusiast Fantomon then passed off as my own. At the time, Mixmence had some genuine surprise value as a set, as you could see from the turn 1 where Marcy left his PDef Skarm in to take 90 from my Mence Fire Blast. On turn 7, I boomed a 100% health Lax into his 20% Skarm switching in, which was very inadvisable. Who knows what was going on in the machinations of my 15 year old mind. My Mence then did some Fire Blast and WoW dodging magic and fired off some Dragon Claws allowing me to pressure his Cune a bit. I figure out Cune is the key mon, and am hell bent on killing the thing if it means sacrificing my whole team.

I boomed my Meta on his Forry in typical gung ho fashion, then got his Cune low enough that it could be finished off with a Rock Slide (which I happily pressed knowing full well it was a roll and D-E wasn't LOL) from my Aero, nicknamed after Toon legend Shola Ameobi. He follows with Dugtrio, and I switch Mence in to soak the Slide, keeping big Shola alive another day. He chooses to keep Dug alive for Pert and TTar and instead gives up Houndoom to Mence.

Once I see Lax as his last, I know I've won. I just need to sacrifice Mence then get Pert in to Sub down so that it can force the boosted Lax back out with the Endeavour threat, which it does. He goes into Dugtrio on the Endeavour, which also handily brings it into Aero Slide range. I follow with Aero as he is forced to sack Dug to a Slide then boom with his Forry on Aero, leaving my TTar to fight his Lax. I Taunt it to avoid the Curse setup, knowing that should it have Earthquake, I can tank 2 unboosted Quakes and 2HKO him.

Looking back and reading the log again, I was surprised at a few things about this game. For one, I'd forgotten how ridiculously good of a matchup I had, almost unloseable. This DD Tar Aero physical offense vs a team with Dugtrio as its Rock resist was just great. I'm not sure what Marcy's prep process was, because this offensive playstyle was sort of all I did back then. I was a wildly aggressive player, often to my detriment. I'd flat out just boom and sack things with no regard for anything other than pure momentum. I've actually lost this trait in my current game, as I've become old and jaded. Also, seeing the in-game chat and all the shit talk again was a hoot. That is a true relic of the PO era, everyone just happily chatting in an SPL game.

So, my first game was a win, heavily aided by a matchup that meant I didn't have to make very many plays. I was fucken satisfied. What happened next? Well, the next week I faced Halloween, the game opening with the rare Medicham lead mirror. I finished 3-2, tricking managers into buying me for the next season. Fast forward a few years, and here I am now, posting nostalgic threads.

So anyway, other vets and young guys alike, share your humble beginnings and memories, and regale us with an interesting tale of your very first time. What made it special?
 
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I do remember my team tour debut on Smogon, great thread topic, I'll get to talk a little about a journey to Being Even On The Sheet

If this includes PO stuff for some reason, my actual first game was POWC 2017 vs Mx, I brought HP:Flying Forretress, after running a scout and seeing he liked this one Bulk Up Heracross team, riveting stuff.

I funnily enough played DPP on debut, got shredded by Honor in 2017(honor thy father), into an act loss vs panamaxis, which already doesn't augur so well for the hero of our story.

Another year of time sunk into the game and it's 2018(you would think I'd have found another hobby by then lol), I played vs smilzo(the invention of the double switch) and jirachee(the gar spikes show) that year and went 1-1, it was an awesome experience, I think I played both pretty well(with some room for improvement), sadly we(Asia) somehow managed to need to qualify AGAIN, epic stuff. I brought a really bog standard zapdos spikes gar team for the first one there, into...a bog standard forre gar team the next one.

:blobwizard:

Fast forward 6 months(2019) and I played KG for week 1 of SPL with him using a team I'll politely call jank(maybe I'll call it creative instead?) to give me a win on debut(the vaporeon show!, the vaporeon show r2), a bit down hill from there for me during SPL(culminating in possibly the most ridiculous loss vs a Nosepass team of all things...saving my readers the trouble of looking this one up). However I did get to play a lot of players I think highly of like golden sun(getting thoroughly demolished week 3, granted that pert crit was Very Not Cool), and ud vs whom I had an enjoyable albeit swingy game week 6 I believe(might not have been the best game, but I'm sure we both enjoyed it) so it wasn't all bad. The Ruiners thankfully had Pearl/Lavos/Lax/Jimmy/Empo to carry me to an spl red(I did go 4-3 though)

I played wcop 2019, and went 2-1(winning with a dead weight skarm, truly an Epic Gamer Moment), and now here I am at a statistically average 7-7(7-5 in my home tier though!) overall. Here's hoping I nab myself a few more wins along the way!

:psyglad:
 
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xray

how u doin'?
is a Tiering Contributoris a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
World Defender
My first big team tour was SPL 6. After making it into Smogon Tour Play Offs I was very disappointed about not getting picked up to play my first SPL. However, I still was very enthusiastic about it and followed it thoroughly. I recognized that the team of my fellow german CBB had some money left after the auction and since then I started annoying him and asking for games on a daily basis. With one of their ORAS OU players, henry, being 0-4 at midseason and their original midseasonplans not going as expected it then paid off! I got picked up for 4k by the Indie Scooters.

In Week 7 I finally was able to play my first game vs another rather unknown user named Meridian. I used a team I was pretty familiar with but didn't show till then. It had some quite unpopular picks in Tangrowth (which really had like 0% usage in big games in ORAS till then) and Bronzong (which I picked cause Lando-I kind of dominated the meta).
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-oususpecttest-37728

After getting my first win I was allowed to start again in week 8 vs another up and coming player with very promising results in TDK. I went for a build featuring a funny AV Cube Set and an offensive Acro Talonflame (decent set back then). Thanks to some good late game action I got my 2nd win there.
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-38807

All in all, I think the first smogon team tournament is always a great experience. Unfortunately we did not have discord back then, but used stupid irc. So I didn't get to know everyone on the team as well as you'd prob do now.
Shoutouts to CrashinBoomBang and bro fist for giving me a shot back then. And big thanks to my senpai Sweepage who gave me lots of advice on preparing for big games. :heart:

To all the newer players: If you really wanna get into these tours, put in effort for it. It can definitely be worth it.
 
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McMeghan

Dreamcatcher
is a Tournament Director Alumnusis a Top Tiering Contributor Alumnusis an Administrator Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnusis the 5th Smogon Classic Winneris the Smogon Tour Season 14 Championis a defending SPL Championis a Past SPL Champion
Big Chungus Winner
Cool thread and read! I'll share some quick memories of mine.

First battle: I signed up on Smogon to play in Smogon Tour, after reading about it in the french Shoddy Server chat. My friends had told me that you needed to refresh the page and sign up as soon as possible because the spots would go by fast. I remember I was casually refreshing every 5 minutes like 1 or 2 hours in advance... I managed to get in and there I was, playing my first game on Smogon. I don't recall exactly how it went though. I was using some kind of U-turn into Dug team with Jirachi & Celebi and I lost round 2.

First Wcop game: now that was also a big moment for me. After playing in two Smogon Tours, I stopped playing Pokemon and returned years later, in Black & White. After playing on the PO ladder and hanging on the french PO server, I learned about the upcoming Wcop, which was everyone's focus at the time. I was going to try out for France but team Benelux got created and Nelson, the man behind the idea, recruited me. My first battle was against US East's jcpdragonx. With his oceanian timezone, I played that first game alone, right after I had woken up. I remember I was very nervous before the battle. After I won (with my trusty ladder rain offense), I felt ecstatic and I was hooked to Smogon Tournaments there and then. I went on to finish 3-0 in my pool, while using the same team every game. Sadly, I don't have the replay but I remember I kept sharing the result with my old pal Cristal and he was happy for me, since we go way back. Something I remember about that era is that most Team tournaments games were hidden if not straight up disallowed. So you'd have to rely on your friends giving you turn by turn informations about the game, either because they got it from the player or because they knew the ~secret place~ of the battle. I have very fond memories of that WCop, where I'd try my best to catch every game and see what everyone was using, analysing their teams and whatnot. I was completely hooked during those summer holidays.

First SPL game: for my first SPL (SPL3), I wasn't even aware of the importance this tournament had for the community. I got picked early in the draft by the Alpha Ruiners and my first game was vs Wolfpack's badabing. At the time, all I was using was RainStall and I just went into the game with another one of those, which had allowed me to get good results in Tournaments and OST 8 in particular. badabing brought up SD Heracross, NP Celebi and bulky Starmie and completely destroyed me before timing out, which made me involved in some hot first week drama. More about this here. I also still have the log of this battle, can be read here.
 

Kink

it's a thug life ¨̮
is a Tutor Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Top Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
Hey Meru remember our game? That was my first high-level competitive game! After watching that one, my managers (shoutouts dice and reyscarface) decided I couldn't play UU and for the next 4 years I waited for the saving graces of M Dragon and Eternal Spirit :jynx: in all seriousness though, that experience forced me to take a hard look at how I was as a teammate and player, which motivated me to doing better as a competitor and being better as an individual.

Back to kidding around, but not really, both myself and meru thought our game was just fine - we were two seasoned UUers with intimate knowledge on how the other played, so all moves were being selected from that viewpoint and I totally would've gone 8-1 that SPL.

To all new players looking to join the scene, be patient - your time will come.
 
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hellpowna

beware of coco
is a Top Tutor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
Nice topic! I’m feeling nostalgic haha. My first time in a competitive tour on Smogon was many years ago in SPL IV. I will always be grateful to Gr8astard (god bless him) for giving me the opportunity to “make myself known”. I was picked up for 3k back then, and I remember having teammates of the caliber of Kevin Garret, Marth, Dracomalfoy (Tamahome) etc, and that I felt insignificant next to those titans, and I kept thinking to myself: what am I even doing here.

Anyway, we reached semis and gr8astard, to the general amazement, decided to let me play. I will be honest: the emotions I felt playing that game were indescribable. Feraligatr was the new hotness in BW at the time, and many people weren’t confident in my team choice. Surprising everyone, I defeated a player named AB2, and then played against Bro Fist in finals bringing Feraligatr both games, winning the trophy.

I was so glad I won both games. Me, a lowly 3k player. Nobody would have bet a penny on me, and yet I became a “hero” for the team. I think that in life you have to break the mold every now and then, take risks…gr8 made a wild choice, but he was right. I can’t wait to read more comments ^^
 
SPL 3, mid-season pickup for the Sharks. I tried to get in as a BW RU player at the time, but then I ended up playing Ubers...I was a WiFi LU main from the PO server back then. I played vs HSA, DarkLucario, GigaPunch, I remember being really intimidated by the last 2, as they had trophies. I went positive that tour, mostly thanks to MoP and Conflict helping me with a tier I barely played.

I don't really remember when I transitioned into a full-time BW OU player...I guess during those WCoPs I played with Asia. I loved those WCoPs, our team was wild and I met some cool people, and seeing now our lineup back then, how did our team not implode? Crazy.

Anyway I have met plenty of cool people in these years, some less than cool people, and I have seen some stuff that I wish I hadn't. Still a fun ride. Nowadays I armchair with my boys in filo gang and trashtalk Averardo :psysly:. Sometimes I think I should come back and school kids in The Only Tier That Matters but then I immediately realize that it's better for me to just stay in the sidelines and enjoy my role as a spectator of the game. I would have liked to win a team tour, but after 7 years of spectacularly slightly below-average performance I think the train has passed. Who knows in the future though, I'm rather moody so this might change anytime.
 

Diophantine

Banned deucer.
went 0-3 (one to timer lol) contributing to us ending up in relegation tiebreaker, gave my teammates heart attacks, two senior players quit, got called woat gsc player by goat gsc player, lost all patriotic honour, m dragon said nice words to me, had a cheeky nandos (triangles made sure to let us all know he ordered extra hot) and some pints with the london lads + the baron, quality snapchat group banter, broke hjad's ankles at five-a-side, overall a good experience. 6/10 would do again.
 

Hipmonlee

Have a nice day
is a Community Contributoris a Senior Staff Member Alumnusis a Smogon Discord Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnusis a Four-Time Past WCoP Champion
My first big team tournament was an inter board tournament back in 2003. I have a vague memory of their being one the year before that I may not have made the team for?

Anyway, it obviously wasnt too much of a breakout for me because I was the captain of the TPM team. MrE was on my team too. The other teams were Azure Heights, GameFAQs and Pojo.

So the way this worked was it was just a 32 man double-elimination bo1 RBY tournament, but you would never be paired with someone in your own team. So this could lead to an imbalance in the number of players in the WB or the LB, so you would end up with a lot of byes and the tournaments could really drag (deadlines were hardly enforced). Then the teams would get 1 point for every win.

But the nice thing about team tournaments back then was that you could sub inactive players, so unlike individual tournaments, team tournaments would often finish.

So I ended up winning it, and TPM ended up with like 1 point more than gamefaqs. In the process I beat Charizard of Azure, Nitro, Cloggerdude, and Undone Backwards twice, who were all more or less the top players on each of the other boards. I remember CoA used a venomoth, but our game had the exit bug while I was winning by a mile, so we had to rematch and I won that one as well (he was using venomoth so duhh..). I also specifically remember that in the Cloggerdude game he froze me very early, and then towards the end I had a fully set up slowbro and he was trying to freeze that with his Chansey as well, and I remember thinking "god I hope he freezes this, because I am gonna win anyway". Unfortunately it wasnt to be so I just ended up just winning easily.

The WB final was against Undone Backwards and I played him again in the grand final, and I am pretty sure both games were fairly haxy. I think the second one was a massive anticlimax where I won easily because of luck... Like probably a Tauros gone wild scenario.

I have a vague memory of Nitro using a kangaskhan but I dont think it was against me.
 
My first official experience was some few years ago, against Ciele in the tour that also seems to be the one and only one that i actually broke through till now (OLT 3), and tbh it might not change in a near future since im not playing any individual for some time now LOL. I remember i wasnt nervous by any way and brought the teams that i liked the most back then, and 2-0ed him in a moment that he was stunning in like every single tour he was playing in. After that i kept rolling like a snowball against everybody and 2-0ed everyone till finals in which i lost to one of the users that i like the most nowdays, Poek, in a fucking winners bracket LOLOLOLOL. Anyway, talking about the Ciele's set i def was in the lower echelon of the matchup and ended up claiming the win so it felt REALLY GOOD to me and i surely wont forget that until i keep playing the game. There were many unconventional picks btw, and even nowdays i keep using the scarf breloom team i brought in the g1 because i find that a really special squad (and pretty good ofc). Replays:

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-197700
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-197718

My first team tour game was for SPL at the infamous Edition 8, in which i played and lost vs Nedor, an average player that was as new as me back then and farmed 2 wins against my ass by keeping everything in what was in his front and i got completely destroyed, a strategy that seems to work at times until nowdays and everyone knows it (but in my defense i surely wouldnt lose any of those games if it was the current MAGICIAN playing and i got kinda unlucky at both too LOLOLOL). That game was terrible and hilarious at the same time since i kept a keldeo that stunned him vs a latios, so ye i def was p ass at times and that tour was crucial to me to start improving and solidifying my playstyle. The original version of that team had a bd azumarill>keldoe too, and i got mad after losing since azuma woulda have even more value than keldeo and could simply sweep his ass. So actually i blame Steve Angello entirely for that one loss by convincing me to swap these mons and i have nothing to regret LMAO fuck this.

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-233387

Both experinces were obviously relevant to me and im happy with the way i improved throughout these past few years, specially considering the record i hold atm and the amount of friends that i got to meet. By the way, the main players i consider to be part of this "journey" (ye nerd) are McMeghan, Tamahome, Nintendi and tennisace, i surely wouldnt be as strong as i am without teaming up/playing/talking with you guys so many times and the main reason i keep playing team tours year after year is the amount of fun i find with sharing experience, time, friendship and knowledge, so ty not only to the ones i mentioned above, but everyone else that were part of it at all the tours i played in.
 
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I take full credit for discovering Triangles, and was very pleased with the results. The Medicham mirror game against Halloween was awesome.

I also miss people talking in the actual battle on PO...smaller community and all. Ace Matador actually used to ask me to pipe up in his Tour games to get some banter going in them.

The first Smogon Tour I joined was Sunday, October 31st, 2010; it was season 10 and the tier was DPP UU, with Heracross allowed at the time. I got matched up with Heysup in round one; I had gotten into UU by using his Free Bird team several months prior in the spring while Froslass was still in the tier. Then over the summer, JabbaTheGriffin posted his lead Qwilfish team, and since I loved Spikes, I was inspired to make my own team with it: Qwil, SR Donphan, CM ResTalk Spiritomb, Curse ResTalk Registeel, LO Milotic, LO Moltres. Amazing, I know. Here's a wifi battle of me using it!

Unfortunately for me, I was not the only one who had jumped on the Qwilfish lead train; it had become pretty popular in the months after Jabba's team - for example, august's team - and Heysup was prepared for this with his lead Taunt Drapion. I don't remember much else about the game itself, except for a few things: 1) he was using the in-the-know good player set of STABs + ResTalk LO Hera (I believe it was RT's), which I was impressed by to the point of PMing him on the forums after asking for its EVs, and 2) despite being down most of the game, at one point I got Moltres in and HP Grassed his unrevealed Kabutops on the switch, which I was very proud of and took with me despite the loss.

That was nine years ago. Jesus Christ.
 
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z0mOG

is a Top Tiering Contributoris a Social Media Contributor Alumnusis the Smogon Tour Season 26 Championis a defending SCL Championis a Past WCoP Champion
DPL Champion
My first tournament I ever participated in was OST 11, the bloo fiasco. I was suggested to signup by my friend group, as we were going to all sign up and share teams to make a collective big run together. The first big-name tour player I faced / my first time being in the spotlight whatsoever was r3, where I was matched against Stathakis. He was a huge-name at the time in CG OU and this was a time where people actually would watch early round OST sets. Getting hyped by a few tour players in the thread/PMs after was such a great feeling -- especially because I didn't really know what I had done or known anything about Stathakis's reputation. I'd be lying if I said I had any memory left of what happened in the games themselves besides there being a manaphy, but replays are God's gift

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/ou-213356966
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/frost-ou-1430139

Bring back talking in smogtours lobby btw

Shortly after I was matched against my now-friend xtra (who i fucked) and eventually went on to pair against "style" in the top 16 where I was destroyed embarrassingly

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-43372
https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-43425

My first team tour debut was over a year later in wcop 2016, after I had taken a hiatus. It wasn't a spectacular game and I got unlucky as hell no lie -- shoulda won but RNG is cringe. Bad game don't watch it. I was also the first time I used my own build, since I don't think I did any building during OST (memory is hard tho).

https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-ou-169228
 
SPL is around the corner so might as well share my first team tour experience.

when i was getting back into 'mons between 2012-2014 i remember watching joey's videos. my absolute favour was his semi's match from SPL V versus edgar. i didn't start playing seriously until 2015 but i knew from that point onwards that i wanted to play in SPL no matter what.

that chance rose few years later when ubers was added back into SPL VIII. i was (and you can still say i assume?) an ubers main back then so i knew this would be my chance - it would be now or never. i couldn't care less if i was picked as a substitute or as a starter - all i cared about was being part of this tournament.

for the auction i remember being in call with Enzo Gorlami (god your name change) and Aberforth for the entire 3 hour draft. gunner got picked by the scooters and the hype level was unreal. an hour went by and it started to look that my mediocre results and not talking to managers would make my fear come true: not getting picked at all. shout-out to omfuga for pushing some team getting me and my dream came true as the 2nd to last pick when ruiners drafted me as a substitute.

in all honesty i didn't expect to play but as i said i would have been fine with it. however our ubers starter astounded had enough of team inactivity and bad results so he let me play the last two weeks. so going into the thread's subject my first team tournament game was this +200 turns stall fest. i remember being so excited that i agreed to play at 2am my time which turned to be 3am due to daylight savings happening in the US that weekend.
something i would never ever do again but that little boy inside only cared about fullfilling his dream. the replay breaks at the end but my post after the game says it all.

for the last week i ended up playing the one and only bkc. no lie this game might still be the best team tour game i have ever played. what happened after the game is something that changed everything. gunner managed to sneak me into scooters during last week. i had already tested with gunner every week bar the week our teams played each other so there was no problems but it felt like an absolute honour to join the scoots chat.

oh boy i was for a ride i didn't expect at all. the deadline day on sunday is something i won't ever forget. let alone the playoffs and the race for the trophy. the ruiners was fun for sure but the scooters had taken everything to a whole new level. people watched every game no matter what. people prepared like lunatics. the whole atmosphere was unreal.

i wasn't officially part of the scooters but the end of SPL VIII with them is still at the very top of my memories. going through the scooter chat since i am still there makes me nostalgic.. yeah, the tournament itself ended the worst way possible and changed everything how i view everything on this site. it still doesn't change the fact that the whole experience was unrealistic and made my dream come through. SPL is the best tournament on smogon and whoever wants to be part of it, i wish you the best of luck.
 

bruno

is a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Championis a Past WCoP Champion
World Defender
I was a big smogon lurker ever since blue_star(who happened to be my best friend on PO) told me his SPL teammate or something was playing his game, in BW1 OU(actually started playing semi competitively around start of Platinum though). It was some game with quagsire vs subddnite(i think it was probably the good ol m dragon stall but i dont remember exactly) that I just happened to get really interested at. I thought it was so cool how they managed to think out gameplans and plays within so little time, something I was never able to do as a ladder player who calced for fucking everything in my games. I never ended up ever trying to be an active smogon user because i felt extremely insecure with my level of english.

Anyway I played on the Brazilian pokémon forums for years+PO(under the name Anti, which is where that shit is from if anyone didn't know) until i eventually had the chance to play for our WCOP team, in a starting slot no less. My first actual smogon game was vs chimpact in a random tour game with a different account, but let's just say it was wcop. I got to play vs shake(who I would end up teaming up with a ton later), who i actually happened to lose to. This was actually demoralizing for me, seeing as i prepared a retarded amount for this game just to lose to sash landot who I happened to find out wasn't as uncommon as I thought later. I ended up going 1-2 in my pool, but we still managed to make playoffs and I was extremely hyped for it. I ended up going 3-0 in playoffs beating dragonuser in finals, and with that, we actually beat US East against all odds. I remember skipping school to watch our final game, we had Earthworm join the IRC chat to tell us how sogeking was doing vs CTC and it was fucking awesome to me because i admired worms a lot. Seeing all the big smogon names that I admired for ages congratulate us was also a really sweet feeling.

Eventually SPL came up and I was pumped to finally be able to play the tournament I admired for a long time. My first game ended up being vs henry who i had scouted an extremely absurd amount with regards to how he likes playing the game, what kind of defensive backbones he enjoys(which explains stuff like heal block latios), etc. I made like 8 different teams just for this game(one of them had a ridic iron headless jirachi with colbur drain punch), and felt extremely anxious all game, but I managed to pick up the win. I was so nervous I asked my SPL chat if I needed to click Hydro Pump vs his LandoT with keldeo because for god knows what reason I couldn't believe the damage calc telling me scald kiled it(guess that would be ghosting nowadays but c'est la vie).

A lot of drama happened but we managed to win SPL, and my "pokemon ego" basically peaked skyhigh. I had won both the tournaments i knew a lot of people wanted to win for years first try, and without snake existing at that point all that was left was playing individual tournaments to try and stick myself as one of the best players of the site. That didn't quite work nearly as well as I expected though. I didn't end up having as much time as I wanted with IRL stuff, ended up missing on stour playoffs by 1 point and lost grand slam poffs semifinals, and after using such a ridic time on it(I mean jesus christ I still applaud anyone who plays slam because it takes so damn long) I felt pretty unmotivated to try anything like that again, so i went on to manage SPL with shake instead of trying to play. Anyway fast forward to SPL 8 aka best tournament of all time where I end up setting the goal of going 9-0 since I couldn't find another way to prove myself as a top tier player without killing myself on an indiv tour, and end up failing with not 1 but 2 losses including one in semifinals playoffs that ends up losing our team the tournament(although mazar bot but w/e man). That tournament kind of fucked me up mentally because I pressured myself way too much over every single game, and after the whole tourban thing one year later I finally realized that as competitive as we try to make this game and community, there's too much variety and way too little reward to actually go out and stress yourself so much over it. I say this but i still feel moderately anxious over every game which i try to mitigate by bringing w/e the fuck i want but regardless it's still fun to go out there and compete once in a while.

went a little off topic from the point of the thread in the end there so you'll have to excuse me for that. anyway, competitive mons is quite the trip..
 
I have a 2017 joindate so I don't think many people know me, but I was picked in the last iteration of snake draft. I wasn't really expecting to get picked, since my only good result at the time was 5-1 in lcpl, however a few players from the rattlers had teamed with me during lcpl and decided to convince the managers to pick me up. During the draft I was in a call with some friends and I was really surprised that I was bought, particularity because I had not made a lot of effort to contact managers. I was more than content sitting on the bench and not playing a single game, but after teal showed interest in starting in OU, I was playing. The first game was against Jake who was 2-0 at the time and went on to have the best record at the end of the season. I was slightly nervous but I had confidence in the team I made and just didn't want to let the team down. Luckily I was able to win and that was the catalyst to beating the Taipans as most people thought my game would be difficult to win. Unfortunately after that, the season fell off with a loss to Luthier where he had insane match up and I lost a 50/50 and 9/16 roll in the endgame and a loss to Trash where I had poor luck.

Although the season didn't go how we planned, I loved the team environment and couldn't have wished for another team to play for. With SPL around the corner, I do want to play in another tournament as the new gen has reinvigorated my interest in the game, but let's wait and see who gets drafted.
 

Bedschibaer

NAME = FUCK
is a Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnus
The week of the Medicham lead mirror was the week I had my first SPL start. SPL 5, week 6. Crazy to think that that's gonna be 6 years ago in a couple of months.

Back then I was just trying to make a name for myself. GSC was brand new on showdown and it had a few nicely coded mechanics like glitching out a second pokemon onto one side, making it effectively a 2vs1 battle or toxic occasionally doubling as an OHKO move. I was just laddering GSC and RBY on PO all day, read every word honorable users like Jorgen and Borat had to say about the game and slowly built up confidence. In some completely unrelated 2013 BW inofficial tournament I mustered up the courage to join and got matched up r1 with McMeghan who swiftly owned me in my poor. During early 2014 I drunkpmed him and wanted to challenge him in a tier I played. We played a couple of GSC games and afterwards he told me that I am not shit and I should sign up for SPL midseason, since his team's GSCer was struggling.

I was hyped that I would be able to share a team spot with a newfound friend in this icon. As fortuna wishes his team didn't even bid on me though. Tennisace was desperate for a GSCer at midseason too because his team full of LCers had like, I don't even know who started man. Kland or Raichy maybe? Anyways I was hyped to be part of a team for once and put my heart and soul into prepping kland into a week 5 6-0 loss at the hands of ifm. I was put in for the following week and my opponent was going to be the intimidating BlueEon. (yes, a truly good year for GSC in SPL)

So basically BlueEon was one of those regular players who plays everything but isn't particularly known for prowess in any tier. He was just one of the handful of guys you could actually sub in in gsc because he had teams and somewhat knew what he was doing. He even beat earthworm the year before. Upon closer inspection I discovered that he basically used the same team with a few variations every tournament game and that team often didn't have a normal resist and just a ghost (yes, this is SPL level GSC in the second half of SPL V). I deduced his weakness and slapped together a lazy team of Resttalk Lax and a ttar.
https://pastebin.com/rwiCkQkW
This is the first time in years I reread this log btw. I let my Cloyster die to Thunder Missy without getting up spikes and I miscounter sleep turns. Twice. In an SPL game. Kinda funny thinking back how nervous I was during that game. I was shaking and couldn't concentrate whereas today when I play I am pretty much dead inside. Nontheless I won the curselax mirror despite not knowing GSC sleep mechanics after I pursuited his Missy. It was a near unloseable game.

My team's season was practically over at that point. I went 3-1 with my wins being vs BlueEon, Picollo (lucked him) and someone who was randomized into GSC in the last week and my loss being to the 0-something MarceloDK who mysteriously disconnected after I critkilled his lax and got a replay. Yes. SPL level GSC everyone. I still have very distinct memories from that time. Like when kland kept pming me during games on PO but I didn't even notice due to playing on fullscreen and after the game he was mad why I didn't make his plays (despite winning). Or memories of the fully inactive team chat. I didn't even know that team tours could be fun until the following wcop where I teamed up with mad lads such as Tv-Rocka, sebixxl, xray, fakkes and conflict.

Not gonna do sissy shoutouts, but since I am practically distatched from the community and on my way out - thanks for the memories to everyone who plays this goddamn game over way too many years.
 

ZoroDark

esse quam videri
is a Tiering Contributor
Reading this thread has been an absolute blast from the past. It actually made me feel nostalgic enough to write something myself, so here goes. After watching hours and hours of wifi battles of youtubers such as shofu in 2011, there was absolutely nothing I wanted more than to compete myself. I discovered PO in December of 2011 and I was totally over the moon. Playing BW OU on the low ladder for hours and slowly becoming a better builder and player probably makes up the period of time where I enjoyed this game the most. It didn't take very long before I started to compete in PO server tournaments with people such as Finchinator, meeps, bugzinator, omfuga and too many others to name that have hopefully moved onto better things.

The next step was participating in these big scary Smogon tournaments to prove myself against the best players in the world. I religiously followed the RMT forums and I idolized anyone who could create a team good enough to be archived, so it was a bit surreal to be actually playing against these people. Over time I guess I managed to build some decent teams myself, because I snuck into OST 9's top 16. That run ended in a game 3 against thatsjustpeachy where I brought my favorite Hail team, but sadly lost on a double Protect. However, this caught the eye of some people on Team Benelux and they invited me to play for them in WCoP 2013. In a twist of fate, my first official Smogon team tour game was actually against another PO ladder hero, although one far more established than me. My opponent was none other than gr8astard. It is a bit crazy for me to think about, but I guess it really was so long ago that only logs are available from that game. I tried to make way too many hard predictions in the beginning, but miraculously a couple of them actually worked out. I should've secured an easy win, but in what would become a bit of a tradition I threw away the end game in spectacular fashion.

Despite this WCoP performance which included another very uninspiring loss, I was picked up for 3k in the following SPL by the Classiest. As a result of a drafting strategy which seemed to completely ignore XY OU having 2 slots, I actually started week 1 alongside Kid Buu (???). This is surely up there in terms of worst week 1 OU line-ups in SPL history and I very much appreciate the lack of "unbiased power rankings" during these days. As expected, both Kid Buu and I got smashed. Joey 6-0'd me with support Zard-X, which I simply had never seen before. During all this time, I never really figured out how to use synirc. Thus, my first SPL ended with a 0-1 record and being sold back at midseason for inactivity.

It took a couple more years and 7 more attempts (which included another embarrassing loss vs Joey, where he beat me in ORAS Ubers with a Dugtrio) before I could finally win my first official team tour game in LC vs mad0ka. Sadly, my use of DJ Khaled nicknames and the corresponding emoji's broke the replay. At this point, I was actually 0-10 in the sheet, so getting that first w was a big relief. Although some people obviously made jokes at my expense, the tournament community was not nearly as toxic and unforgiving of who it considers to be "bad" players back then as it is today. This aspect, in combination with my life getting exponentially busier over these 8 years, is slowly pushing me away from this game. However, this thread served as a great reminder of the many unforgettable memories that I've gotten to experience. I would like to end this post by thanking everyone who has contributed to that in some way :toast:.
 
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Some real cool stories here!

I'd like to share mine. In 2013, a long long time ago when playing Pokemon competitive was basically all I wanted to do in life (miss these simpler times), I was going all out for the superprestigious PO League challenge. You had to collect 8 gym badges or something before being eligible to challenge the elite 4. Anyway, it was a down moment and only Isa was online. Most people have forgotten this by now because he never played after the Body Slam mechanic change , but Isa was (in my eyes at least) the best RBY player of all time. He had gym records in consecutive years of 21-4, 21-2 and 15-4, which was completely nuts looking back in a tier this luck depended.

So, determined as I was I start reading some Smogon guides about RBY OU and I end up with some basic sample teams, only I slapped on Zapdos on all of them because it looked badass and I read it was underrated. I challenge Isa, who was like a ridiculous 16-1 at that moment, to play right then and there and I beat him in 2 games out of nowhere, with game 1 being very clean and I win game 2 on a 30% zapdos critting a ~60% paralyzed chansey with ice beam. The badge was mine, but I did not get far enough. Funnily enough, I got the necessary badges the year tafter o be eligible to challenge the Elite 4. I had already beaten 3 out of 4, with only Isa, who was E4 that year instead of Gym Leader, standing between me and a forum badge + opportunity to challenge current champion Energy. As fate had it, I beat Isa with the final game being RBY OU and later beating Laurel / Energy to become the 2nd PO Champion, before Heroic Troller took over the crown a couple of years later (by an inactivity win LOL)

Despite the luck, Isa was so impressed with my showing that, when the BIGS completely forgot to draft a RBY player and had only 3k left, he mentioned my name to BIGS management and they decided to take me. There I was, out of nowhere the designated RBY starter for an actual SPL team.
BUT before I even had the chance to get a game in, Nas decided to cancer because he wasn't drafted by the team he wanted to go to and he deleted the entire UU subforum out of rage! He quickly got forum banned which led to a compensation pick. At this point Funkasaurus had already noticed he was throwing a complete random into the deep end so he got During Summer as RBY starter. He felt really bad about it though, so he decided to give me a chance in week 1 to prove myself, which brings me to my actual first tour game!

I faced Floppy week 1. He had a big tendency to lead with Jynx, so I just planned to lead Gengar to win the lead matchup. I get the matchup and start cheering for outsmarting my opponent! Then, everything went to complete utter fucking shit.
I miss Hypnosis, he hits Lovely Kiss. I go to Chansey, he clicks Blizzard and gets the freeze. At this point I have 4 healthy pokemons left: Exeggutor, Snorlax, Zapdos and Tauros. Instead of letting my useless Chansey die, I go hard Tauros and it gets 2 shot by Blizzard. At this point it's 6 mons vs 3 left and the game is just completely over after 4 turns. My first ever official game and my worst nightmare comes true.

With During Summer just about ready to prep for week 2, I somehow pull out the remaining 2 games by playing quite good and I start 1-0. My team's super happy and excited, but most of all stunned to see me overcome the dreadful luck of game 1 and I get to remain the starter.
I start off 3-0 and make the All-Star game, but I don't win a game after that and get benched at 3-3. We make the playoffs, I remain benched and we lose in semis, but I'll never forget the great McMeghan giving me a shoutout and writing these magic words that still make me feel warm inside: "I remember in particular some end games plays vs Raish that left me in awe. Rarely have I been so impressed watching someone play Pokemon."

Despite being more of a current gen OU player up to that point, my RBY reputation stuck with me and here I am now with 40+ SPL games in the tier!
 
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Lutra

Spreadsheeter by day, Random Ladderer by night.
is a Community Leader Alumnusis a Programmer Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnus
I'd like to share mine. In 2013, a long long time ago when playing Pokemon competitive was basically all I wanted to do in life (miss these simpler times), I was going all out for the superprestigious PO League challenge. You had to collect 8 gym badges or something before being eligible to challenge the elite 4. Anyway, it was a down moment and only Isa was online. Most people have forgotten this by now because he never played after the Body Slam mechanic change , but Isa was (in my eyes at least) the best RBY player of all time. He had gym records in consecutive years of 21-4, 21-2 and 15-4, which was completely nuts looking back in a tier this luck depended.
Isa played in SPL VI, which was after the Body Slam mechanic change. They also went 14-6 in Victory RoAd 3, following that SPL, both in 2015.

I also feel there are a lot more skillful RBYers now, because of more persistent tournament opportunities; and lots more potential players are reached with PS (albeit with plenty of options to play another tier). Therefore I think it’d be harder to replicate these days.

Also, a gym challenge means a field of anyone willing to challenge, so the records just show that and not domination of other top players.

They are definitely brilliant achievements though.
 

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