Data Gen8 Discussion Thread

nightblitz42

is a Forum Moderator
Moderator
In this thread we are documenting our proposed Gen8 changes, as well as collecting feedback. Please reply with questions, comments, concerns, and suggestions related to anything and everything you read here.

These proposals were designed by the Mod team: mostly JjayyFeather, TMan87, and nightblitz42. We tried to incorporate player complaints and suggestions we heard, but we worked privately. Historically, this sort of thing would take place in a formally-conducted public forum. However, due to the exodus of a lot of our players, that forum broke down. Therefore, the mod team decided to conduct its work privately. This was to improve efficiency and get things done in a timely manner (hopefully before gen8). We are now doing our best to make things public.

With regards to mechanical game changes, the mod team has two main goals in mind:
1. Increase the expected number of actions it takes to defeat a Pokemon (on average), thereby making the metagame less overtly aggressive.
2. Decrease the power gap between “strong” and “weak” Pokemon, thereby increasing the number of valid options for players.

We also have some minor goals, in no order:
• Small balance changes to overly-strong moves (Endure, Heavy Slam)
• Decrease needless complexity of the game wherever such changes are appropriate.
• Address Word-Of-God and ref discretion in determining Combo validity
• Rebalance items in accordance with any rank-number changes

[Rank Changes]
In accordance with our goals 1 and 2, we propose the following rank-math changes:

New Rank Cutoffs:
RankMin. StatMax. StatHP Value
102460
2254970
3507480
4759990
5100124100
6125149110
7150174115
8175199120
9200224125
10225-130
• Slightly raises the upper bar of stat ranks

• Eliminates the massive clumping issue at R3 by changing it from 50 pts of stats to 25.

New Damage Formula:
Final Damage = [(Base Attack Power * BAP Modifier + STAB + Critical Hit + Stat Rank Difference + BAP Adjustment) * Type Effectiveness] + (Combat Stage Difference * 2) + Additional Damage
• Stat Rank Difference replaces Stat Rank Bonus, with its value being (User’s Attacking Stat Rank - Target’s Defending Stat Rank) instead of that multiplied by 2.
• Reduces the impact of stats on the overall feel of combat, while not minimizing them entirely.

Two big changes to note here are: Rank thresholds at each multiple of 25, and Ranks giving +1/-1 BAP instead of +2/-2 BAP. The mod team predicts that the reduced damage from Ranks will increase time-to-kill, while also making Pokemon with lower stats more useable. Therefore, the proposed change coincides with both main goals.

Also, please note that these HP values are 10hp less than the values used in the testing match. They should closely correlate to the current HP values of gen7 BBP. The mod team is currently of the opinion that decreasing rank damage and increasing HP at the same time might have too drastic an effect (as some would argue it did during the shift to gen7).

Move Changes
Heavy Slam: BAP formula adjusted to 6+(User WC - Target WC)
Rest: Damage needed to break rest reduced to 16. (8 BAP STAB SE, or 9 BAP SE with a 2 rank difference). Healing reduced to 10hp/a
Endure: The user gains Sluggish for the remainder of the round.
Screens: Reduces the BAP of affected moves by 3, 2 if protecting more than one Pokemon.
Belly Drum: On a watchlist, no tentative plans to change it.

• The Heavy Slam nerf is mainly meant to address the overwhelming strength of Mega Aggron in BBP. The mod team predicts that this change, combined with rank-math changes and ability changes (later in this post), will help keep Mega Aggron in line.
• The damage threshold for Rest is changing in response to the rank-math changes.
• Endure has been arguably the most important move in BBP. It is useful in every single matchup to the point where Pokemon that don’t learn it (mostly Pokemon from recent generations), as well as Pokemon that can’t “break” Endure, are at a great disadvantage. In order to encourage Pokemon diversity, the mod team would like to nerf this move. Adding the Sluggish status to it will keep the move’s functionality the same while reducing its maximum payoff.
• The nerf to Light Screen and Reflect is preemptive, in response to the math-rank changes. Following the changes, the mod team expects BAP to be one of the greatest factors in determining damage output. Although we want to create a slower rate of battle, nerfing Light Screen and Reflect is an attempt to crack down on overly stall-based strategies that use Screens in conjunction with other damage-reducing effects to grind the game to a halt.
• With regards to Belly Drum: The mod team predicts a potential spike in the value of stat-boosting moves resulting from the rank-math changes. However, we are hesitant to preemptively nerf stat-boosting moves because, unlike Screens (which have been proven to be useful before gen8) stat-boosting moves have historically been generally terrible in all previous BBP metagames. Should stat-boosting moves prove to be overly oppressive in practice, we may move to nerf them later.

Damaging Evasive Moves:
D/E moves are being re-codified for clarity. As they are currently, D/E moves contain extremely long move descriptions, with many unnecessary repetitions between them as well as many seemingly-arbitrary differences. In accordance with our minor goal of reducing needless complexity, the mod team proposes the following changes to D/E moves:

• All D/E moves have Priority (0/-1).
• All D/E moves have an Evasive EN cost of six (6) EN, and an Attacking EN cost of five (5) EN.
• All D/E moves (except Sky Drop) can be Suspended.
• The universal mechanics of D/E moves will be moved to the Handbook, instead of being included in each move’s description.
Fly: The Pokémon flies up high, and strikes down in a tackle. This move has Damaging Evasive properties. Gust, Hurricane, Sky Uppercut, Smack Down, Thunder, Twister, and Whirlwind cannot miss against the user. Smack Down and Gravity will cause the user to crash to the ground, cancelling Fly and making it take (2 * Weight Class + 4) crash damage. Gust, Twister, and Whirlwind will make Fly miss when used during the evasive stage, but will not deal crash damage.
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN

Bounce: The user leaps above an incoming attack and crashes down on the opponent with immense force that may paralyze. This move has Damaging Evasive properties.
Gust, Hurricane, Sky Uppercut, Smack Down, Thunder, Twister, and Whirlwind ignore Bounce's evasive properties. Being struck by Smack Down and Gravity will cancel Bounce; the Bounce user will take falling damage equal to twice their own Weight Class, plus 4. Being struck by Gust, Twister, and Whirlwind will cause Bounce to automatically miss, but will not result in falling damage.
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN

Dive: The user dives underwater and surfaces under the opponent to attack them. This move has Damaging Evasive properties. If the user is at least SC 5, at least 3.5 meters long, is Hovering, or is a Flying-type; it ignores the target's Hovering status. Dive will fail if the arena lacks a body of water. Surf and Whirlpool ignore Dive's evasive properties and strike with double BAP.
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN

Phantom Force: The Pokemon disappears briefly into a shadow dimension before striking an opponent from behind. This move has Damaging Evasive properties. This attack nullifies any Protect, Detect, Quick Guard, Wide Guard, Crafty Shield, King's Shield or Spiky Shield active on the target, as well as the effects of Evasive Agility and Evasive Teleport. If the target is under the effects of Minimize, Phantom Force has its Base Attack Power doubled (x2).
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN

Shadow Force: The user slips into a parallel dimension, waiting for the perfect moment to reappear and strike. TThis move has Damaging Evasive properties. Shadow Force is not blocked by Protect or Detect and hits users of those moves normally.
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN

Dig: The user burrows under the ground to attack the target by surprise. This move has Damaging Evasive properties. If the user is at least SC 5, at least 3.5 meters long, is Hovering, or is a Flying-type; it ignores the target's Hovering status. Bulldoze, Earth Power, Earthquake, Fissure, and Magnitude ignore Dig's evasive properties. Bulldoze, Earthquake, and Magnitude strike for doubled BAP, and ignore any immunity granted by the Flying Type and the Hovering status.
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN

Sky Drop: The Pokémon grabs the opponent in its talons, and drops them from a great height. This move has Damaging Evasive properties, but CANNOT be Suspended. While in midair, the target of Sky Drop has its attack redirected to the user, and can only hit the user with its attacks (and cannot use Evasive Damaging Moves). Gust, Hurricane, Sky Uppercut, Smack Down, Thunder, Twister, and Whirlwind cannot miss against either Pokemon in the evasive stage of Sky Drop. If the user of Sky Drop is hit by Smack down while in the evasive stage, it crashes to the ground and takes (2 * Weight Class + 4) damage while the target lands unharmed. If Gravity is used, both Pokemon take this crash damage. Sky Drop fails when used on a Substitute, or if the target's Weight Class is equal to or greater than the user's Weight Class + 3. If used on a Flying-type Pokémon, it will deal no damage but the attack will still lift the target into the air as normal.
Evasive EN cost: 6 EN
Attacking EN cost: 5 EN


*****Handbook description*****

Some move descriptions say that a move has Damaging Evasive properties. These moves are called Damaging Evasive moves (D/E moves). They are two-phase moves. First, the user enters an Evasive state. During this Evasive state, the user avoids most attacks. Secondly, the user emerges from its Evasive state to attack the opponent.

There are three ways to perform a Damaging Evasive move:
(Default): The user enters the Evasive state at +0 Priority and pays the move's Evasive EN cost. Then, the user attacks at -1 Priority the same action, and pays the move's Attacking EN cost. STAB EN cost reduction is only applied to the Attacking EN cost for this version.

(Suspend): The user enters the Evasive state at +0 Priority and pays the move's Evasive EN cost. If a Pokémon is in the Evasive state at the end of the round, it may not be switched out. While in the Evasive state, a Pokémon can only use the (Suspend) or (Attack) versions of the same move, or a combination involving the (Attack) version of the same move. Failing to do so causes the user to exit the Evasive state and lose their turn. For the purposes of Consecutive EN cost, the (Suspend) version is considered a different move from the (Default) and (Attack) versions. (Suspend) versions of Damaging Evasive moves do not trigger substitutions for Damaging [Type] Move

(Attack): This version replaces the (Default) version if the user is already in an Evasive state at the start of their turn. The user strikes at +0 Priority and pays the sum value of the move's Evasive and Attacking EN costs. For the purposes of Consecutive EN cost, the (Suspend) version does not contribute an EN cost penalty to the (Attack) version. STAB EN reduction is only applied once to the (Attack) version.

These changes are not motivated for balance reasons, but for clarity. Although, it should also be noted that changing certain D/E moves from Priority (0/-2) to Priority (0/-1) is a nerf, since it allows for potential counter-play that was not possible before. In addition, D/E moves that previously could not be suspended (Bounce, Phantom Force) are buffed by these changes. The mod team does not see this as a problem.

Ability Changes:

Global
All abilities that increase or decrease the BAP of attacks, ingoing or outgoing, have the absolute value of their adjustment reduced by 1. This means Filter is now a -1 BAP ability, and Iron Fist is only a +1 BAP, so on and so forth. They still retain a minimum absolute value of 1 however, so Magma Armor and co have not been changed.

There were two motivators for this change. First, this is a response to the rank-math changes, which make BAP-adjusting abilities more proportionately powerful than before. Secondly, this is an answer to Conkeldurr’s dominance in gen7 BBP, which the mod team predicts would become even more pronounced should Conkeldurr be left unchecked in gen8 BBP. Its multiple BAP-boosting abilities stacking atop one another would be too powerful for the upcoming metagame.

[Item Changes]

Signature Items

Entirely scrapped and redone.

Instead of being tied to specific Pokemon and only having an effect when held by those mons, they are going to be held items that have alternate effects based on various attributes of Pokemon.

All attachment category items or Legendary-specific items will remain, as well as Signature Z-Crystals and Mega Stones.

Examples:
• Adventure Rules: "An instruction manual full of tips and battle strategies. Increases the Pokemon's highest true base stat by one (1) Rank. The holder's Abilities can't reduce its own stats, reduce its HP, or increase the BAP of incoming moves."
• Exp. Share: "A high-tech device that grants the holder battle experience against a variety of attacks. Increases the Pokemon's highest true base stat by one (1) Rank. On sendout, if the holder has an Ability that boosts a stat when struck, increases the corresponding stat by one (1) Stage (adjusting the Natural Stage)."
• Lucky Egg: "A lucky charm said to bring the bearer great luck and good health. Increases the Pokemon's highest true base stat by one (1) Rank. At the end of each action, if the holder has an Ability that recovers HP when struck by a move, it regains 2 HP."
• Barometer: “A tool used for taking note of changes in wind speeds and other meteorological data. Increases the Pokemon's highest true base stat by one (1) Rank. Triggers the effects of all abilities on the holder that activate in a specific weather.”

The mod team fully expects Signature Item revamps to be a divisive issue. Signature Items are beloved ways to boost the power of certain Pokemon that would otherwise be unusable. However, they are currently based on certain principles that do not align with our second main goal:
• They are only useable by Pokemon that evolve under certain circumstances on cartridge. This guideline is arbitrarily restrictive and leads to the creation of Signature Items that serve no purpose.
• Signature Items apply personalized effects to individual Pokemon. This limits the extent to which Signature Items can possibly help balance the metagame, since even a well-balanced, well-designed Signature Item only benefits a single species of Pokemon.
• Signature Items are balanced in accordance with the power level of the holder. This philosophy leads to extremely unbalanced Signature Item design. The ubiquity of Knock Off accentuates this problem, since low-power Pokemon get even stronger effects to compensate for potential item loss.

When designing this new wave of Signature Items, the mod team focused on improving Abilities that are underutilized in BBP. The philosophy of “identifying a weakness to fix” should lead to purposeful Signature Item design. Furthermore, by making Signature Items more general in design, we can increase their potential impact on the metagame.

We are eagerly waiting to hear your suggestions for more Signature Items. Specifically, we are looking for ideas that target a specific trait a Pokemon might have that needs to be strengthened.

Held Items
Subject to a numerical rebalance in the soon-to-be future, awaiting some performance testing.

This is a given, since rank-math is changing. Certain items may become unbalanced. Notable items include Binding Band and Focus Band, for example.

Type Changes
Subject to a revisit as well

In accordance with the minor goal of reducing unneeded complexity: are STAB effects still necessary? Should they be scrapped? Should they be re-worked?

[Combo Feasibility]
In theory, the referee is the one who judges combo feasibility. In practice, the referee is expected to follow unwritten Word-Of-God laws to determine combo feasibility. This issue is further agitated by situations where the feasibility of a combo determines who wins or loses a match.

Therefore, the mod team is presenting a draft of a Combo Feasibility Chart. Its purpose is to conclusively determine combo feasibility in all situations. This would eliminate a huge source of referee subjectivity in BBP, thereby making the game more competitively viable. A link to the draft chart is below. Please look at it, then give feedback or suggestions. Due to the scope of the project, there is a high likelihood that you may catch something that was overlooked.

Please read the cover page of the document thoroughly. It contains minor mechanical and flavor changes to a significant number of moves.

Link to Combo Chart: (Google Drive)



With regards to System Changes, the Mod Team has two main goals:
1. Give players faster access to Pokemon and Items. There are two purposes for this goal:
• To make high-level play more accessible (both by increasing player resources and by reducing the time dedicated to grinding).
• To encourage experimentation. Niche, experimental strategies are very healthy for the game, but are discouraged by time/currency costs. These costs impair Mechanical Goal 2 (Pokemon diversity) by incentivizing players to spend their limited time/currency on “safe” Meta pokemon that have already been proven to be successful.
2. Incentivize reffing, despite system changes that favor Goal 1

[System Changes]

Currency

CC: Refactored into RC
UC: No longer exists
MC: No longer exists

JC: (tentative name) Is the only existing player currency. Used in order to enter battles as well as payment for reffing battles. Full details on the system to be added…

Pokemon
• Automatically fully trained at the evolution stage of your preference on acquisition
• Hidden Ability is locked or unlocked at user discretion, needs to be logged through claims

Rewards
Players pay JC to battle, with that JC (and a little bit more in some cases), going to the ref of that battle.
All parties, players and ref, receive RC, which is used to acquire new Pokemon.
JC can also be used to buy rewards specific to it which includes Legendary Pokemon and some other features in the system.

The mod team expects all the System Changes listed above to be controversial. Naturally, we have spent a lot of time reviewing these proposals. The downside to maxed Pokemon purchasing is that players can’t grind for moves anymore. Some players like to grind for moves for prestige, or to cultivate their “favorite Pokemon” to an unrivaled power level. If we take away those options, the alternative would be to seek prestige and progression through TLRs or Gym Badges. Not everybody is interested in those routes.

However, if I may speak for myself, I am strongly in favor of maxed Pokemon purchases. I’m not 100% in favor (I don’t think anybody on the mod team truly is), but I’ve gradually concluded that MC cultivation is intolerably time-wasting. This isn’t a sudden conclusion, but one I’ve been arriving at for at least a year. Had I not played all the training battles I have, and instead spent that time playing more serious battles, I would be a better player right now. And that’s not even considering the hours upon hours I’ve spent claiming moves for my Pokemon after each battle. It’s all wasted time.

There obviously is a need for some sort of limitation on purchases, though, for the approvers’ sake. That’s why RC is still necessary. But it’s easier for everybody involved if players just buy the Pokemon once, maxed, at the PCT and that’s it.

One way to enable progression is to increase the variety of methods by which people can obtain Legendary Pokemon. That is part of the appeal of the new JC system. Players who are interested in grinding for prestige, but are not interested in challenging Gyms or TLRs, could choose to use reffing to grind JC and purchase Legendaries.

Please give your thoughts or suggestions.

Legendary Pokemon Tiers

The following is all the work of JjayyFeather (thank you!). Legendary Pokemon have been assigned Tiers 0-4, with 0 being the strongest and 4 being the weakest. The purpose is so that we can potentially design future rewards as “claim a Legendary Pokemon from X Tier”.

I know y’all have been waiting to see this.

Tier 4: Phione
• Yes, I made Phione its own fucking tier
Tier 3: Floette-E, Celebi, Keldeo, Cobalion, Virizion, Diancie, Magearna, Zeraora, Articuno, Moltres, Zapdos, Entei, Suicune, Raikou
• Lower-end legendaries that are likely really easy to outclass, but hey, these are legendaries :p
Tier 2: Jirachi, Manaphy, Darkrai, Shaymin, Terrakion, Meloetta, Genesect, Mega Diancie, Volcanion, Lati@s, Marshadow, Registeel, Regirock, Regice, Regigigas, Azelf, Mesprit, Uxie, Cresselia, Heatran, Landorus, Landorus-T, Thundurus, Thundurus-T, Tornadus, Tornadus-T, Reshiram, Zekrom, Kyurem, Tapu Lele, Tapu Fini, Tapu Koko, Tapu Bulu, Necrozma
• Middle/Upper-Middle tier legendaries that definitely all carry their own water easily
Tier 1: Dialga, Palkia, Giratina, Kyurem-B, Kyurem-W, Xerneas, Zygarde, Yveltal, Necrozma-DW, Necrozma-DM, Ho-Oh, Lugia, Kyogre, Groudon, Mew, Mewtwo, Victini, Hoopa-U, Deoxys, Solgaleo, Lunala, Mega Lati@s
• These them bois right here
Tier 0: Mega Rayquaza, Primal Kyogre, Primal Groudon, Ultra Necrozma, Mega Mewtwo X, Mega Mewtwo Y, Arceus
• These right here won’t be gracing BBP with their presence anytime soon lmao
 
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Florina Liastacia

Gotta flex on the rest of Battle-By-Post
Ideas for item effects for the new item type (because we can't call them sig items anymore):
  1. One that lets you mark a move below a certain threshold (of BAP/EN) as a sig move, that move gets benefits making it on par with better moves of its type (Absorb gets stats on par with Giga Drain)
  2. Something similar to above but only gets secondary effects when used in combo and makes that combo only Sluggish a la Moth Dust
  3. An underdog item only equippable to FE mons of a certain BRT or below, raises all ranks by 1 and +? Bonus to STABs
  4. Maybe weaker versions of items that can't be knocked off? For example, Sticky Leftovers that heals 1pA instead of Leftover's 2pA
  5. Bug/Flying Move Transposer: This Pokemon can use up to X moves learned by another Bug/Flying type and gets +1 to true highest stat, Dustox counts for this
  6. The above but tied to the starters? Blastoise can learn moves off of the other Water-type starter lists or something (including the CAP starters?)
  7. make Rare Candy a consumable because it's candy you eat it come on
  8. Gluttonous Pouch: Carry 2 berries to be eaten if you have Gluttony!
 
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Welp, first time in forever checking this out.

* I like the idea of not having to waste time and bookkeeping on training up various mons, although it does moderately disappoint me that the mons I did nearly max before quitting aren't going to be quite as prestigious anymore.
* How would existing mons be treated by the new system? Could we fully evolve any we had previously?
 

nightblitz42

is a Forum Moderator
Moderator
Florina Liastacia
  1. Sounds like a fair concept. Is there a way to design that item that isn't already covered by Float Stone or Charcoal-like items?
  2. +1a after a combo probably exceeds the power level we're looking for (even with the restrictions you suggested)
  3. Extremely good suggestion imo. Unfortunately, we don't yet have a good idea how important stats are going to be. Let's keep that idea in mind.
  4. Seems like it would most likely just add bloat. Idk.
  5. Given the opportunity, people will choose Powder. That's probably too strong, while paradoxically not particularly helping the viability of its target userbase.
  6. Starter-based sig items would be unnecessary imo. There are already perfectly good starter Pokemon.
  7. Every item is edible if you're not a coward.
  8. Sounds like an intriguing effect. Triggering double-berry stat boosts, choosing between two Nature Powers, or stacking the same type-resist berry twice for a 4x weak mon would be interesting. I do think two Figy Berries for +30hp would be too strong though. May I suggest this implementation:
  • Berry Pouch: A drawstring sack for holding Berries. May only be equipped to a Pokemon with Gluttony (but can be swapped/stolen/etc afterwards). When equipping this item, you may choose up to two (2) Berries to put inside the Berry Pouch, including a maximum of one (1) Berry with an HP-restoring effect. The Pokemon holding the Berry Pouch is considered to also be holding the Berries inside it, and may consume each of them normally. Effects applied to the Berry Pouch also affect the Berries inside of it, and vice versa. If the holder uses Natural Gift while holding two Berries, they may specify a Berry to use -- otherwise the Berry is chosen randomly.
The Pokemon I think this would benefit the most are Alolan Muk (Power of Alchemy -> Harvest/Cheek Pouch), Linoone (for healing after Belly Drum), and Shuckle (Shuckle). Because of the interesting strategies this item makes available, I strongly support it.​
Also, while looking at Mothim I had the idea to introduce sig items that affect Camouflage, Nature Power, and Secret Power. Currently all our battles take place in the ASB Arena, which takes away much of what makes these moves interesting. I'll post here once I have a more solid idea for that. Hopefully my idea won't destroy game balance.​
Tortferngatr I would be in support of allowing evolution & reclaiming previous mons. I imagine most people are.​
---​
Unrelated note: proposal to increase the EN cost of Knock Off to 12en (matching Drain Punch).​
 

Florina Liastacia

Gotta flex on the rest of Battle-By-Post
I think that the sticky items would give a measure of counterplay against Knock Off that, at the moment, is limited to consumables, and not many of those

Berry Pouch looks hot

More items gogogo

Make Knock Off 12 EN but only if the target has an item
 

JJayyFeather

Drifting~
is a Forum Moderator
Moderator
I like the idea of not having to waste time and bookkeeping on training up various mons, although it does moderately disappoint me that the mons I did nearly max before quitting aren't going to be quite as prestigious anymore.
Yeah, this is something we battled with a fair amount internally as well. The feeling of being able to say you went through the effort to max your faves was amazing, but we just ultimately felt like there was no real way to preserve that feeling in a meaningful way while hammering out our major objective of addressing the excessive grind.

How would existing mons be treated by the new system? Could we fully evolve any we had previously?
Details on this have yet to be fully decided, but it'll be some form of simply updating them to the new system. Likely not all at once though, potentially limited by RC, the transition hasn't been fleshed out yet and is still very much in decision making. Suggestions here are welcomed.

Items
Something similar to above but only gets secondary effects when used in combo and makes that combo only Sluggish a la Moth Dust
Not a chance. Effects of that nature are innately too high power level and very much away from the benchmark that we're going for, which is around Rare Candy.

This reminds me since I forgot it in my drafts of the changes, Rare Candy and Everstone are going to be combined into one universal item, with the same effect except no alternative BRT threshold (yet) for bonus stats. The BRT threshold will be decided at a time when the metagame seems to have evolved a bit. Related bit to the 3rd suggested item effect as well, all underdog effects are going to be put on hold until we have a grasp on where everything lies.

NB covers my feelings for the most part on 4-7, although I do feel the need to add that I'm not too keen on the idea of adding moves/coverage via these items, at all.


Berry Pouch: A drawstring sack for holding Berries. May only be equipped to a Pokemon with Gluttony (but can be swapped/stolen/etc afterwards). When equipping this item, you may choose up to two (2) Berries to put inside the Berry Pouch, including a maximum of one (1) Berry with an HP-restoring effect. The Pokemon holding the Berry Pouch is considered to also be holding the Berries inside it, and may consume each of them normally. Effects applied to the Berry Pouch also affect the Berries inside of it, and vice versa. If the holder uses Natural Gift while holding two Berries, they may specify a Berry to use -- otherwise the Berry is chosen randomly.
Very honestly, I am incredibly against this idea. Being allowed to use two items at once is excessive as hell, especially considering berries are not bad items at all. They just have their niches that counterbalance their strengths by only being applicable in certain situations. The ability to pick and choose two, that can be consumed normally, while lovely and variant and interesting, is quite frankly game-breaking and overcentralizing.
 
I know I have been absent for a long while so feel free to correct me but couldn't you give every fully evolved Pokemon access to all the moves they know from the current (and potentially the previous generation for free, to account for tutor moves) and leave all previous generation moves to grind for, while reducing the cost by one?

EDIT: Another solution that I came up with is to have everyone start with 10 or so TMs of their choosing (Flamethrower, Surf, Screens, Endure, etc...) and they would be able to use them in every Pokemon as many times as they would like, so by the time they grind the TMs and Tutors any new Pokemon would be completely trained, thus the cost of fully training one or two pokemon becomes the final cost to train them all. Level up moves would all be free.

As for weakmons, my personal preference was that all mons should be usable somewhere, and I feel speed control is the way to do it. Support and offense both love speed control so an item that gives Prankster / Light Metal to mons with a low BST/ or Atk/SpA seems like it would be ideal.
 
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nightblitz42

is a Forum Moderator
Moderator
Gerard
  • We could implement your move-learning proposal if we want. Here are some of my thoughts:
    • The number of moves most Pokemon learn in past generations but not in the current generation is extremely small, except for CAPs.
    • The MC cost for moves right now is 1MC each, regardless of source. If we go lower then we'd have to charge fractional MC (which is fine I guess?)
    • The max-move proposal (put forth in the initial post here) completely eliminates grinding for MC, while your proposal would only reduce MC grinding. Which proposal you should prefer depends on what result you're looking for. I prefer the max-move proposal because it makes competitive play as accessible as possible and also encourages experimental Pokemon choices (thereby benefiting all levels of play at once).
  • Speed control for mons with low offenses is an approach I had not thought of, nor had I heard suggested. I like the idea because it helps weak mons in a way that doesn't eliminate their identity. I also think the effect you're proposing can be balanced (we already have effects in BBP that increase Priority and aren't overpowered). We should wait a bit after gen8 to flesh out the idea though because we're not sure how important Ranks will be in gen8, or what a "good" set of stats is going to look like yet. That's what I think.
 

LucarioOfLegends

Master Procraster
is a CAP Contributor
Technically on break but ignore that. Few questions.

- How are items in catridge that have explicit enhancement to a paticular Pokemon (Thick Club, Light Ball) be changed? Will they be generalized as well to match the current remodel, or will they simply be scrapped?
- Obviously speculatory, but how high are the estimated costs of Legendaries, say a Rank 2 for example.
- Will above create a general higher difficulty for TLRs?
- What will happen to UC when replaced with JC? Will there be an exchange at some rate or will it be reset?
-My chief worry of maxed movepool system is that it may overwhelm completely new players, how will the new system be able to ease them in aside from git gud mentality.

I also had concerns about subs and the 'too much to sub for problem' now that maxxed movepools are a thing but I wasn't able to come up with a good question.

If these are dumb obvious stuff then let me know.
 

JJayyFeather

Drifting~
is a Forum Moderator
Moderator
LucarioOfLegends

- Specific items that aren’t categorized currently as Attachments are slated to be scrapped until a later date. Not necessarily final, but is what’s intended for those items as a result of being an old style item not a new style item.

- The actual costs of them, and even if they will be purchaseable, is not finalized. Although tier 2 and above would not be purchaseable at all.

- TLRs are receiving a full system overhaul, and as a result I can’t really define whether or not it’s easier or harder, but the difficulty will better match the quality of legendary while none of them being absolute pushovers or absolutely impossible.

- Right now, set to be reset. It’s effectively a completely different currency than what JC is set to be.

- Honestly, I never considered the possibility of having a full movepool overwhelming newer players on that front, but I’m hoping it’ll be counteracted by the fact that they’ll actually be able to engage in meaningful gameplay from the jump rather than weeks/months of grinding followed by the weeks/months/years of attempting to learn the game’s ins and outs. Good point though.
 

nightblitz42

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If I may add onto JjayyFeather's response:
  • MC restrictions aren't the only system in BBP to help new players. We still have BBP 101, as well as player-written articles in the Bulletin Board Post (I'll probably write a few post-gen8, and probably Time Machine some existing articles too). I've heard players like Florina Liastacia discuss the idea of a RP facility geared towards beginners (no idea how that's going). I'd consider helping with that myself, but I predict that at the start of gen8, Battle Hall will keep me very busy. I would rather discuss the implementation of additional beginner-helping tools than keep MC solely as a beginner-friendly mechanic, because MC also restricts what high-level players are able to do.
  • With regards to the "too much to sub for" problem, I don't consider that much of an issue (except for possibly Smeargle, but that's a drastic outlier). As somebody who joined during ASB's "tricky meta", I quickly grew acclimated to the idea that you often can't sub for every threat. In that case, a player shows their skill by correctly identifying and subbing for the most dangerous threats. The assumption would be that the player ordering second often has an insurmountable advantage, and the goal when ordering first is to minimize the mileage the opponent gets out of ordering second. I don't see that as problematic game design. In fact, part of what frustrated me about gen7 BBP is that going first or second seemed to have a relatively small impact. Ideally, turn control should be a valuable resource, just like matchup control is in Singles. If you can always sub confidently for every threat, there's hardly any downside to using U-Turn or Roar. If you have to choose between covering four different threats with only three subs, it serves as an opportunity to show off your wisdom and skill. That's what I think.
 

TMan87

GEEEEEEEEEEEEEZ
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Something that the mod team has agreed upon only recently:
Anime and manga moves will no longer be usable.

With the need to create complete profiles from scratch, tracking down anime/manga-only moves would be too much of a burden with little reward, so these will be Thanos snapped out of existence come Gen 8.

Since we're planning to use a PS! dex-like source to get complete movepools, event moves can stay, as they are much more common and easily identified.
 

nightblitz42

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A proposal I'd like to put forth is: encouraging Self-Reffing as the standard for Battle Tower and other casual battles from gen8 onward.

My reasoning is that unless the match requires strict formality (gym matches, tournament matches, etc) self-reffing is far more efficient than external reffing. It only requires two people instead of three, and there's less down-time waiting for players in other time zones to reply. In the past we've had times where the Battle Tower queue stagnates from lack of refs, or where a single ref would take on every battle for months to keep things moving. I believe this policy would mitigate both these issues.

Ideally, if both battlers in a match are willing to self-ref, they could agree that the player ordering second always refs the round. Just like how a Battle Hall ref can order second, ref, then order first next round, battlers could complete multiple steps of a battle at once, greatly speeding things up.

What are your thoughts for or against this proposal?
 
After much thinking about this, I think I agree with most of what has been proposed here. Just a few comments from me:

1. Initially I was rather upset at the removal of MC, but after some consideration, I've come to the conclusion that the problem isn't with the MC itself necessarily. After all, there's a reason I'm a bit infamous for having a lot of low movepool Pokemon in the ASB era. While I do like the removal of the grinding aspect of BBP, I find myself struggling to answer one basic question.

What is the point of a regular battle in this new era?

The new currencies are RC and JC; RC is used to purchase new Pokemon, and JC is used to purchase entry into battles. Items and moves are currently planned to be free, with a few minor exceptions (legend transform items). Assuming we keep the costs low for both of these things (which we should, generally) the grind will be really short. Players will only want to get RC in order to buy the Pokemon they want to use or experiment with, while JC will probably result in a surge of activity around the time of tournament signups (if there's a JC cost to entry, as I suspect).

All of this is to just say that outside of an initial grinding period, I do not really see any reason for people to keep playing. It's not like you get anything that helps you get the actually rare things, like legendary pokemon. Whenever I've asked, the answer people tell me is that "People will do normal battles in order to test out new strategies for gyms, etc." but...have we seen that in BBP, ever? All that we've ever really had in this game in recent years are flash matches designed specifically for speed to help grind things. You never really see any serious matches. Which is why I'm worried when we move to this new "anti-grinding" system people are going to see a dead forum, not necessarily because people lost interest in the game, but because we took away their reason to battle for anything that isn't a legendary pokemon.

In summary, I really just want to see some sort of way to guarantee that people still participate in matches that do not have a legendary as a reward. Perhaps by forcing hefty JC costs for gym battles, tournaments and roleplays? Some kind of universally good reward that does not involve legendaries? I don't really know, especially since I realize both my proposals kind of take a step back in terms of reducing the grind.

2. Regarding the RP facility meant for beginners, I am currently working on an RP to mimic the in-game experience and teach new players how to battle in ASB without being overwhelmed by maxxed out movepools and the like. I have some ideas and will begin hashing out ideas shortly, but it will likely be out a few months after the update so that the development team behind that can get a better gauge of what constitutes a balanced challenge. Once more of the details have been ironed out, expect a post in the Role Playing Approval Thread. :)
 
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nightblitz42

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Maxim
First of all, I'm glad to hear about your RP idea! BBP absolutely has a place for a beginner-helping RP, in my personal opinion.

With regards to your concerns about currency, I have a few things to say in return. Firstly, I speculate that the prevalence of Flash Battles in the Battle Tower was a self-fulfilling prophecy: by necessitating grinding, we may have actually forced players to avoid serious battles. Personally, I made an active effort to stick to the 3-battle limit, and I found myself using most of these battles on NFE training matches. I found it very difficult to justify using my battle slots on FE matches precisely because grinding was such a necessity. I absolutely would have participated in more serious Battle Tower matches had I not felt the need to grind.

Nevertheless, I do hear your concerns. I -- and the other mods too -- have been struggling to address this "incentives" issue for a frustrating amount of time. One answer could be to (as you suggested) charge a nontrivial amount of JC to challenge TLRs and Gyms. The benefits would be twofold:
  • It would incentivize people to ref and earn that sweet, sweet JC.
  • It would control the rate at which players challenge TLRs, preventing the queue from getting out of hand.
At this point, the mod team appears to strongly favor this course of action.

Another answer could be to design TLRs and Gyms in a way that requires unique abilities or team compositions to clear easily. This would cause people who want to collect Legendaries to farm RC for buying new Pokemon. However, this solution might be difficult to future-proof as new, unforeseen strategies emerge.

Another answer could be to just let the Battle Tower die. If nobody wants to play that game mode, why force them? As BBP evolves and the playerbase changes, it's important to recognize when vestigial aspects of the game need to be abandoned.

Finally, we could set up a prestigious JC shop for rare rewards. Not only could this encourage battling, but also deal with the problem of counter stockpiling we saw happen with UC. The downside is that allowing the Pokemon to be purchased with JC imposes limits on how else we might make them available. For example, allowing a Legendary Pokemon to be purchased with JC devalues the prestige of clearing that Legendary's TLR.

Of course, right now the specific numbers of the JC system are uncertain.
 

JJayyFeather

Drifting~
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Adding further to the above-

The major thing I want to point out about the concerns with the new system we're moving into is that they are heavily based on the current state, and the state of the last 5 years, of this subforum. Yes, people lose what they have to grind for, but it also means that people can actually dedicate time to other things in the game, rather than purely farming for the chance to contend. Our goal is realistically just to shift the focus away from preparing to play and to move it into actually playing.

Regarding currency/battles-

A lot of what you'll be seeing in the new system, once all the numbers come together, will be an element of risk/reward to the gameplay loop. Currently, risk/reward doesn't exist except in the form of a challenger cooldown that is significantly shorter than the duration of your challenge anyways, especially in the case of TLRs. So the punishment for failure basically doesn't exist in a lot of cases, which is why no one ever takes time to actually verify the quality of their strategy until its being used. This will be different with a higher end cost appended to higher-end, and thus more rewarding, content.

Also, it's amusing you mentioned TLRs and Gyms - their initial design in both cases is to lend itself towards something like that, but one never was subject to updates and the other is still hilariously easy to counter anyways. TLRs in their upcoming iteration, which I'll start releasing details regarding on November 8th, are going to be a very different experience than what people who challenged their previous iteration are prepared for, and will be much easier to adapt as strategies evolve (as well as being run by someone who likes throwing wrenches ;p). I began an evaluation of Gyms privately about a week ago, you two will know a bit more in a couple days as committee/moderation members because I was noticing this issue across running my gyms over the years, and I think I have a good solution for the ability to solve a gym.

More to come~
 
What will happen with the moved that will no longer be available in SWSH, will these remain or are we gonna get rid of 100+ moves?
 

nightblitz42

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What will happen with the moved that will no longer be available in SWSH, will these remain or are we gonna get rid of 100+ moves?
We're keeping old moves. Pokemon that could learn them in previous generations will still be able to use them in BBP Gen8.
 
I guess I'm late to the party, haha. I'm going to try to keep each point brief, as I see that the Omnibus thread is already up.

Move Changes:
-Reflect / Light Screen: I would caution against this change. Under the current rules, a Screen usually increases a Pokemon's survivability by two damage thresholds (e.g. 4HKO -> 6HKO). However, this proposal only allows a Pokemon to take one extra hit. Because Screens take an action to set up, their new form can never give their user an advantage in the damage race, which severely limits their use.
-Endure: This is probably for the best, but the proposed fix doesn't Endure's problem wasn't that a Pokemon could use its full movepool while Enduring; rather, it was that the Pokemon could burn through nearly all of its HP and Energy in an even matchup, then use Endure to gain an extra round of attacks against the next opponent. Thus, I'd like to suggest an alternative:
Endure said:
Normal | Status | User | -- BAP | -- Acc | 25 EN cost | -- Eff% | Contact: No | +4 Prio | -- Z-BAP | Combo Type: None | Snatch: No | Magic Coat: No
The user braces itself for impact and until the end of the round will not be KOed by damaging attacks or energy exhaustion through subsequent uses of Endure during the same round the user's own moves, surviving with at least 1 HP and 1 EN instead. Enduring users may not use Combos. If a move's description states that it fails unless the user has enough energy the Pokemon still needs to have enough energy to use the move. Endure does not help the user survive residual damage such as poison, burn, sandstorm, Future Sight, etc., and Endure does not prevent EN KO caused by other moves or the effects of moves used on the user, such as Nightmare (Encored moves do not cause the Endure user to EN KO, since they're still the ones using the move). All effects that are based on the damage an enemy deals (ex. Bide, Iron Barbs) to the user act as though the opponent did full damage, even if Endure negated some of the damage. Endure can be used successfully multiple times in the same round by the same Pokemon, however a Pokemon cannot use Endure if it successfully used Endure in the previous round. This move fails unless the user can pay the entire Energy Cost.

Z-Move Effect: The user's negative stat changes are reset to 0, adjusting the natural stage of the reset stats.
This version of Endure is still a strong move, but its utility is considerably restricted. An Enduring Pokemon now needs 40 Energy or more to survive the round, which limits Endure's use to surviving an additional round in a bad matchup instead of exaggerating its user's advantage after scoring a KO.

On the topic of moves: let's bring back Dodge for the new generation. Dodge was the one of the most important moves in ASB because gave every Pokemon some degree of counterplay against Encore, the best move in the game. Moreover, Dodge's low chance to avoid an attack made it an unreliable Evasive move, so attackers rarely had to waste a substitution to cover it. Overall, the metagame is healthier with Dodge available than without it.
Also, if Dodge's complex formula was responsible for its removal, it wouldn't be hard to simplify it. For example, something like [(70/Size Class) +5 if user is faster OR -5 if attacker is faster] is much easier to remember than Dodge's old formula, and it keeps the move at a slightly weaker power level for many Size Classes.

D/E Moves:
I don't like the flavor of suspending Bounce, but I can't argue with these changes otherwise.

Abilities:
1. If we consider every change described in the OP, the speed of the potential meta game is roughly equivalent to that of Gen V ASB, which was generally agreed to be too slow. However, if we leave items untouched, the average DPR is increased just enough to mitigate the strength of stall tactics and allows more Pokemon to reach the 4HKO threshold the revamp deems desirable, while maintaining an average DPR that still hovers around the 4HKO mark.

2. Conkeldurr's strength comes from its ability to overshoot relevant damage thresholds. As a result, it is relatively untouched by this nerf; while it loses the ability to 3HKO with 8 BAP attacks, such a change means little to a Pokemon with access to plentiful Priority moves and a powerful Drain Punch. Instead, this change harshly affects the many Pokemon that rely on their Abilities to meet competitive damage thresholds, and the nerf to items makes it harder to make up for this loss in DPA. Therefore, this idea should really be reconsidered, as it barely touches its intended target while taking down a significant portion of the Pokedex as collateral damage.

Signature Items:
There's no need to discard dozens of items when we can simply add the proposed new items to the existing pool of signature items. I'm going to address each point individually:
• They are only useable by Pokemon that evolve under certain circumstances on cartridge. This guideline is arbitrarily restrictive and leads to the creation of Signature Items that serve no purpose.
Sig Items aren't as arbitrary as they seem. The earliest Signature Items were designed both to balance the metagame and ensure that nearly every non-Key Item from the cartridge games had a competitive use. Moreover, no item lacks a purpose; even though later Sig Items were outclassed by regular held items, they continued to buff weak Abilities or promote new playstyles for their holders.
• Signature Items apply personalized effects to individual Pokemon. This limits the extent to which Signature Items can possibly help balance the metagame, since even a well-balanced, well-designed Signature Item only benefits a single species of Pokemon.
Limited effects are still a valid way to balance the metagame, especially when they supplement broader effects. We shouldn't remove successful attempts at encouraging Pokemon diversity just for the sake of starting from a clean slate.
• Signature Items are balanced in accordance with the power level of the holder. This philosophy leads to extremely unbalanced Signature Item design. The ubiquity of Knock Off accentuates this problem, since low-power Pokemon get even stronger effects to compensate for potential item loss.
Power imbalances among items is an inevitability of item design, especially if you plan to buff weak Abilities in any capacity. Meanwhile, the powerful effects of certain Signature Items is a greater incentive to use their otherwise weak holders than the revamps of this update at large: many of the strongest Signature Items belong to Pokemon with any combination of poor typings, shallow movepools, and weak Abilities. Changes to the Rank System cannot address these shortcomings, and weakening Signature Items won't help either. Finally, the old Signature Items follow the same philosophy of "identifying a weakness to fix" as the new ones would; the only difference is that each of the newer items would affect a wider variety of Pokemon. As mentioned above, underutilized Abilities are a frequent characteristic of the weak Pokemon that possessed the strongest Sig Items, leading to considerable overlap between the purposes of old Sig Items and the new proposal.

I'm also curious what you plan to do with the Signature Items that exist on-cartridge (Stick, Light Ball, etc.).

Held Items:
Basically the same sentiment as my point about Abilities: leaving the power level of external damage boosters untouched will help the flow of the metagame.

Type Changes:
There is a difference between de-cluttering the ruleset and removing depth from the metagame. Even though STAB effects see little use, their removal would fall into the latter category.

Combo Feasibility:
Even if I'll miss coming up with zany combos, I think this idea is good for the game. It will provide players and refs with a clear idea of what constitutes an acceptable combo, and it should save time when someone tries to win an important (tournament, gym, etc.) match with a ridiculous combo.

Economy:
I like the idea of spending less time grinding, but I don't agree with its execution. While this proposal wouldn't completely kill normal battles, the forum would be significantly less active if the reward from battling is lowered. Also, this proposal increases the amount of work required to Moreover, the removal of all NFE Pokemon from the game would pose an aesthetic issue that clashes with both on-cartridge and simulator play and inhibit certain avenues of role playing for the player base. Finally, the grind of BBP is directly responsible for the system of advancement and progression that distinguishes it from other ASB games, so its elimination would make BBP more generic.

Instead, I'd like to propose an alternative system:
1: All Pokemon are claimed at their earliest evolutionary stage with their Hidden Abilities locked. Whenever possible, a Pokemon starts with the same amount of Moves as the current system allows (all Level-Up Moves learned before Level 26, 5 Egg Moves OR Tutor Moves, and 5 TM Moves), but then adds Moves from any source until it has 30 Moves.
2: Upon evolving into the second of three stages, a Pokemon learns 20 additional Moves. If the Pokemon knows fewer than 50 Moves, it instead adds Moves from any source until it has 50 Moves.
3: Upon evolving into the FE stage, a Pokemon learns all remaining moves in its movepool. If a Pokemon was claimed at the FE stage, it learns all remaining moves in its movepool after participating in one battle.
4. A Pokemon may unlock its Hidden Ability at no cost after participating in one battle.

These rules retain some measure of progression while streamlining the training process, as completing 1-3 battles takes a trivial amount of time when compared to the old investment required to max a Pokemon. They also retain the importance of normal battles, helping to keep the forum active. Finally, NFE Pokemon could still see use in battle, and their comparatively small movepools would make approving a new profile much easier than under the current proposal.

Legendary Pokemon:
Do you intend to take away Birkal's Mega Stones? :p Honestly, though, codifying the rarity and availability of all the Legendaries is a good idea.

Anime / Manga Moves:
This is unnecessary. Beyond the information in the DAT, Bulbapedia has two convenient pages on Anime and Manga Move Errors, so it's very easy to find these moves. Furthermore, it's not unreasonable to expect players to utilize multiple sources on a Pokemon's movepool; as a result, even if the Showdown Dex becomes our primary source of moves, we can still refer to information from other sites.

Self-Reffing:
I think this is a good way to make BBP more efficient. My only concern is that new players might be intimidated by the concept of simultaneously reffing and fighting in a battle if it becomes the only option for reffing.
 

JJayyFeather

Drifting~
is a Forum Moderator
Moderator
Wow that's a lot of thoughts here.

Moves
- Screens: The changes are indeed more pre-emptive than not. But the numbers for next generation are going to have majority of the impact on damage coming from the BAP of the used move. Being able to halve that number, especially over the course of 6 actions, has a large impact on the TTK. But more on this in a separate section.

- Endure: I like this idea as well. And quite frankly, might just add it to what was already planned to be changed about Endure.

- Dodge: I personally have no intention of bringing it back into the game. The rest of the staff is more than welcome to outvote me on this one if they desire, but I don't see the need for it being back. The solution to a broken move isn't to revive a terrible bandage option, which is all Dodge was, a get-out-of-jail-free card against Encore users. If Encore presents itself as an issue again, we'll discuss ways to solve the Encore problem without this bandage.

Abilities
The nerfs to abilities is inline with what the total goal of the numerical changes is, reducing the disparity between well-endowed Pokemon and those that were severely lacking in those endowments. As such, no intent to change the fact that reducing the output of abilities is a part of our plan.

Items
Signature
The point of the change is precisely counter to what you brought up, we're not really looking to bandage that which takes insanely outlandish measures to fix. While we don't want to leave these Pokemon entirely in the dust, fixing some of these problems requires items that are way beyond what the understood balancing point of these items was supposed to be. Say they aren't arbitrary as you will, but the focal power point of these items was always stated to be Rare Candy but a step above, and a lot of the ones that actually see use are significantly better than a step above. Which contributed heavily to the feeling that Knock Off and other forms of item control were unhealthy for the development of the metagame. Yes, because it happens that all these really bad Pokemon only had a shot at viability through this single outlet of balance, which was protected by nothing more than your opponent forgetting to bring a mon with item control.

Moreover, for every bad Pokemon that did get a unique signature item to give it some sort of a niche, there were plenty that were not afforded such an opportunity as a result of not meeting the criterion of having an alternate evolution method.

Held
As it currently stands, I'm not changing anything about the damage potential of them, except for potentially realigning their numbers and placements to make sure they don't overlap with each other too much.

Using this segment to wrap up the statements regarding damage from above, the goal of the numerical changes it to shift the focal point of damage output away from the actual Pokemon as much as reasonably possibly, and move it to the moves and items. While this will not solely fix the viability issue of atrociously understatted or small movepool Pokemon, it does help to widen the gap, which does a lot more than credit is being given for, considering that a wealth of skill (cough cough Emma cough cough) does a lot to make up for any other viability differences. I do think there is merit to the various other ways that balance has been attempted, but I also feel like holding fast to these potentially antiquated methods prevents us from ever expanding beyond them into what could be the right method, or at least a step towards the right way. This is the majority of my belief in why Signature items as they currently are must be removed. As cool as they are for incentivizing the use of those Pokemon, all it really does is even more aggressively incentivize the use of a single strength denial technique that becomes innately more powerful against these Pokemon than against others. So, we're going to try an iteration of this forum without it. It's possible that in the future we'll double back on these changes, or maybe fuse some of our new learnings with the old system, but it is time that we gave something else a try here.

The raw in-game ones will be maintained only as a result of being deliberately those items in-game.

Types
Eh, outside of the ones that are directly copied from in-game, these only ever really show themselves off in cases where only one player is aware of their existence. Which isn't a case of metagame depth, but a case of extra material that could be discarded without me notifying anyone and almost no one would recognize. If we're going to work on player retention and new player attraction, it'd be plenty helpful if we didn't maintain minimal effects that are capable of entirely changing a match on occasion.

Economy
Honestly, the essence of your proposal is just where we currently are with the training system. Just more moves involved and less MC. Which doesn't actually solve the problem. We're moving the needle entirely away from the raising a mon aspect of the system, because so much time gets lost there between battling, picking moves, and waiting in queue in PCT, that players weren't getting valuable hours of repetition in-game.

We were stuck on this discussion internally for a while as well, because yeah as you said, it would feel weird not having training and further disassociating ourselves from in-game and the original intent of the form. But as you've noticed, we've changed the name from ASB to BBP, and our focuses do need to match that. It's going to always have a special place in my heart, and I likely will have a memorial for the lovelies that got me to where I am today, but at this point the process is almost as streamlined as it can get, so we're taking that final jump. Alongside some changes that will be included in the Omnibus.

Additionally, as an aside, NFE pokemon already don't have a place besides as a placeholder/time-waster outside of very specific cases (e.g. Porygon2) currently. But nothing in the new system says a player isn't allowed to purchase an NFE Pokemon instead for whatever reason, we're merely lifting the restriction that keeps players from getting to the meat and potatoes.

Legendaries
Honestly, I forgot that someone actually had access to Tier 0 Legendaries, so yeah I'm gonna have to strip those, as their method of attainment was 100% not up to par with what should be expected of access to such latent power.

Error Moves
Yeah, I'm aware of the existence of those sources. However, we feel that those moves really just aren't necessary here, and more importantly, it lessens management load.

Self-Reffing
Very valid concern actually, we'll look into maintaining that reality as the new system envelopes, but it should be hopefully remedied by the mentoring changes planned.
 

nightblitz42

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Piggybacking off JJayyFeather 's post, which I don't have any problems with:

Endure: I agree with your assessment. When I proposed the Sluggish Endure change, I was thinking about how Endure has been used in Gen7 BBP, which was a very aggressive format. I still maintain my opinion that the damage being dealt through Endure was too much. However, now that you have brought it up, I can see how Endure may be exploited for EN in gen8. I would definitely be in favor of implementing your change in addition to the Sluggish change.

Dodge: There is reason to believe that Encore might not be as oppressive as it was in old ASB. Chill, Combinations, and now Z-Moves can mess it up. Also, there's a possibility that Dynamax might circumvent Encore. Finally, its EN cost is now set to 15 EN. For the time being, I would like to see how Dynamax and Z-Moves pan out as counter-measures. However, I will admit that its prevalence in ASB was undeniable, and so keeping an eye on the move, at least, would be appropriate.

Abilities: In my opinion, the main function of the Ability change is to keep their power level of Abilities (in general) in check following the stat change. I perceive BAP-boosting abilities as being similar to stat Ranks in function. Therefore, if we nerf stat Ranks, it makes sense to also nerf Abilities. To me, hitting Conkeldurr was a fortunate side-effect.

Sig Items: From my experience, Signature Items (in their current state) have not encouraged Pokemon diversity in the highest level of play. They only encouraged Knock Off meta. Which encouraged even more powerful sig item design. Which further encouraged Knock Off meta. Deleting current Sig Items might allow Pokemon without Knock Off to see more use. In that way, deleting sig items can actually serve to improve Pokemon diversity.
(this isn't limited to just Knock Off, but item-control in general. Sticky Barb, RCB+Thief, and so on.)

Types: I've thought a lot about STAB effects since this thread went live. To me, the biggest problem with STAB effects is that many are obsolete, which has led to an environment in which only a few STAB effects have a reasonable power level. Personally, I think Rock's +1 Priority to defensive moves is way too strong compared to the rest. Meanwhile, Water got shafted because BBP has shifted away from its focus on special Arenas over the years. All the STAB Commands are wastes of Actions. I don't think it's acceptable to leave STAB effects in such an unbalanced state, but I also have no clue what our target power level for STAB effects should be. In other words, I can't identify a purpose they serve for the game, other than "complexity for the sheer sake of complexity". That's bloat. That's why I propose scrapping them altogether.

My second-biggest problem is that the non-Command STAB Effects aren't obvious enough. It's obvious to the opponent when you're using Brighten in an orderset, but not when you're using Dragon's damage reduction to tank a hit. If there were a way to make STAB Effects more relevant and also make their implementation universally more obvious, I'd be in favor of maintaining them.

Economy: You're not the first problem to bring up this issue to us. The issue of "how to incentivize normal battles without holding back high-level play"... We're thinking of putting TLRs and certain other things behind currency to solve that issue. That way, we can give players all the tools they need to play well, but still keep incentives for normal battles.

Anime/Manga Moves: It's not a question of "are these moves necessary" so much as a question of "are these moves worth the hassle". The hassle is that bookkeeping, prize approving, and profile making all take extra effort. It's a burden that requires justification.
 

nightblitz42

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P2X7 sorry for the double-post, but actually something came up. In my previous post, I expressed my hope that Encore might not be as rampant in gen8 as it has been historically. However, as it turns out a significant number of Pokemon are going to learn Encore in gen8 that previously did not. These Pokemon include such powerful Pokemon as Gengar, Sableye, and Snorlax. Considering this development, I have reason to believe Encore will continue to see overwhelming use.

I would support the following changes to Encore:
  • Encore only lasts for 1a.
  • Encore's EN Cost is reduced from 15 EN to 10 EN.
The duration change should hopefully make it less oppressive of a move. However, I feel that 15 EN is too high a cost for that weak of an effect. Overall, this nerf might be a little bit too harsh, but if the overwhelming support for nerfing Endure is any indication to go off of, I'm sure nobody would miss Encore.

I believe that this change would be a more efficient and effective way of dealing with Encore's power level than re-implementing Dodge would be. Part of the reason I say that is because Encore was still extremely powerful while Dodge existed.
 

nightblitz42

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All right, let's talk about the economy. The proposal to sell mons with full movepools has been met with generally lukewarm reaction. Although most people seem to agree that the proposal solves some problems with BBP, many people have expressed concern that the proposal will make Battle Tower battles useless. "Why grind battles if Pokemon don't need any training?" is what people say. This would pose a serious problem because Battle Tower battles are the bread-and-butter of BBP. Personally, I don't quite agree with these complaints. However, this is one of those cases where if enough people think it's a problem it becomes a problem -- if enough people perceive Battle Tower battles as "useless" then Battle Tower battles indeed become useless. And many people do perceive them that way. Therefore, my opinion on the matter is moot.

To reiterate: Some benefits of the current proposal are:
  • Less time fiddling with creating and updating Pokemon profiles
  • Less time waiting for Pokemon profiles to be approved
  • Less grinding means that players can spend more time learning from "serious" battles with Pokemon they really want to use, and practicing with full-power strategies.
And some downsides are:
  • Does not incentivize Battle Tower battles enough (which are very important for the health of BBP)
  • Doesn't feed players' desire to make their favorite Pokemon species stronger than other players' (I want to be the only player with a Lv100 Furret)
In Discord, Lou proposed a solution that seems to address the downsides while negating as little of the benefits as possible. There are two main components to the new proposal:
  1. The possibility to train Pokemon passively by using other Pokemon in battles (like how Exp. Share works in-game).
Currently, training Pokemon requires the player to participate in LC Training Battles with those Pokemon. If you could train LC Pokemon by participating in FE battles, you could maintain "grinding" while still allowing Players to participate in as many "serious" battles as they want.

2. Training Pokemon in discrete "stages" without having to constantly edit its Profile.​
If you want to train a Pokemon with 3 evolutionary species (like Greninja), you have to make 3 distinct profiles, not to mention update the movepool countless times. This process can be streamlined without completely removing progression. One way to do so is by leveraging methods of progression that don't involve the movepool.

Here are the specifics:

Pokemon would have 5 "stages" of progression, numbered 1* through 5*. Pokemon would be purchased at Stage 1* and a fully-trained Pokemon would be Stage 5*. These would be their properties:

1* - Base: Full movepool, Serious nature, no HA, unable to equip items, Basic Pokemon (lowest evolution)
2* - Unlocks HA, may evolve once
3* - Unlocks Items, may evolve again
4* - Unlocks Nature
5* - Unlocks Mechanics: Z-Crystals, Mega Stones, Dynamax/G-Max

Players would not be forced to create full Profiles for Pokemon they don't intend to use. For example, if a player buys a Froakie but doesn't intend to use it until it evolves into a Greninja, they could create a "placeholder" Profile for Froakie with minimal information (name, gender, species, nature, and a picture) and the intent to complete the profile after it fully evolves into Greninja.

Pokemon would be purchased at Stage 1* using CC. Battle Tower battles would grant players TC (Training Counters), which can be spent to upgrade Pokemon up to Stage 3*. Stage 4* and Stage 5* would only be unlockable through some kind of achievement tied to using the Pokemon itself (for example, Battle Hall, Gyms, or TLRs. Details TBD).

1* - Default
2* - 1 TC
3* - 1 TC
4* - 5-Streak in Battle Hall, successful participation in a mid-tier TLR, other moderately-difficult achievements, etc (?)
5* - Battle Hall clear, successful participation in a difficult TLR, participation in Gym battles, other difficult achievents, etc (?)

Note that 1* through 3* would be achievable without ever having to use the mon. That would be enough to achieve full Evolution. I believe this is a good way to encourage Battle Tower battles but also cut down on the excessive LC-battle-grinding and profile-tinkering that the current system imposes upon players. Because it improves upon the already-proposed JC system, I strongly recommend implementing this system in tandem with the new JC system.

I apologize that this somewhat-dramatic proposal comes so late in the transitioning process. Please share your thoughts and concerns, as well as any ideas you may have for 4* and 5* achievements. One particular flaw I could see is that getting a Pokemon to 5* may be difficult if it's a weak mon that's over-reliant on Mega Forms, Z-Moves, or Gigantamax.
 

LouisCyphre

heralds disaster.
is a Forum Moderator
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There's been a lot of talk on Discord as to what sort of rewards players could look forward to in Gen 8 BBP, with the understanding that simply going "full simulator BBP" where we battle for battling's sake isn't as fulfilling as the game could be. Even on Showdown, players are playing to try out teams to build in-game for Online play, or to test ideas for their next local league, or even simply to gain ranking. There's nothing "less pure" about playing for a reward--Gaining Things is inherently more fun than being Given Things.

Over the course of discussion, some of the above has changed, and some more criticisms have come up. Let me round up some of what's been discussed.
  1. It's important to be able to max a Pokemon's movepool with currency alone. The point of this proposal is to give players something to collect without forcing them to waste time with their "bad" mons. Being able to work on your Pokemon in the background while participating in "real" battles is critical.
  2. New players shouldn't have full movepools thrown at them right away. Instead, they should have access to full movepools only after they've become accustomed to the hurdles of playing BBP, such as order syntax and substitutions.
  3. New players should be doing the same, or many of the same, activities as veterans. One of the ways we drove off potential players in the past was by funneling them into designated new-player content like B101 and that... balloon thing that I forget. "Weenie Hut Jrs," I've decided to call them. Instead, players should be chasing the same goals as their veteran counterparts--Pike, Hall, TLRs, and so on. These facilities just need to oppose new players with Pokemon that are limited in a similar way to the new player's team. This way, they get a feel for what they'll be doing later in the game without getting in over their heads, and we don't have to make a designated set of kiddie content that players will do a couple of times and then abandon.
  4. The last tier of progression should be special, but not too special. Maxing a Pokemon's tier should take more effort than just spending currency on it. Combining this with point 1 above, and it means that Pokemon's movepools should be complete before the last tier--and that the last tier needs a non-move reward instead.


With the above in mind, here's my updated proposal for Pokemon progression:

Star Tier​
Tier Cost​
Move Unlocks​
Other Unlocks​
1​
---​
Level-Up​
---​
2​
1 Training Counter​
Egg​
First Evolution​
3​
2 Training Counters​
TM, TR, and HM​
Full Evolution, Hidden Ability​
4​
1 Elite Counter​
Tutors​
Advanced Mechanics*​
5​
Achievement​
---​
Nature​
*This includes Mega Evolution, Z-Moves, Dynamax, and Gigantimax if any.




Training Counters (TC) should come from every battle a player does. In my head, you'd be awarded TC equal to your team size, win or lose. This way, new players get to evolve their starting Pokemon after their very first battle. We'll state somewhere that these counters represent time spent with the Pokemon--after all, we're still an RP on some level for those who want that, aren't we?

Elite Counters (EC) should come from beating the first set of "harder" content. What that content looks like will be settled in the future, but I can see a world where a player wins some EC for clearing the Phione TLR or for beating an "Iron" tier of Pike. The key benefit of making this reward into a counter is that veteran players won't have to use their "crappy" Tier 1-3 Pokemon in order to rank their mons up to Tier 4, and can spend their time doing "real" battles with Tier 4-5 mons for those same rewards instead.

The last tier should stimulate even Veteran players. That is to say, it's likely that whatever we decide counts as an "Achievement" will end up being the majority of what veterans play. After all, in this model, the point of the game is to collect Pokemon and promote them to 5*. A variety of activities need to count for this tier, and they can't be too difficult, or else we exhaust our veterans. Worse, players might win their Tier 5 only when they get a weaker ref.

Tier 3 grants the bulk of the moves because it's the tier where a Pokemon is guaranteed to be fully evolved. It will probably become common for players to skip straight to this tier (buying a Pokemon and then immediately spending 3 TC on it) so that they only need to make their mon's profile once. Lastly, since many Pokemon can get by without using any Advanced Mechanics, I wanted to make sure that players who want to use a Tier 3 mon aren't at a huge disadvantage. Many Pokemon can live without Thunder Punch or Snore tutors, but certain critical TMs like Protect, Endure, and Taunt make or break a Pokemon's viability on their own. If Tier 3 Pokemon didn't have these moves, they'd be unusable.

My rationale for putting Nature behind the last tier is that it now gives less benefit than ever: only a single point of damage or defense. But it's also the only "real" form of customization available, making it much more desirable than it is valuable. I think this suits the "achievement" tier of power perfectly.

***

I did also have one other proposal for collectables: Ribbons. They wouldn't be anything more than a text list of "things this Pokemon has cleared," but I'd bet money that at least one player would take their favorite mon and set out on a quest to get every possible Ribbon on that Pokemon. If we wanted, we could have rewards for players obtaining X total ribbons (like we currently do for cumulative badges), but ribbons would work fine as a motivator all on their own.

I'll warn against any "First to X" ribbons, though. As soon as ribbons can go extinct, players who had the misfortune of joining later simply won't be able to collect a full set, and that causes a lot of the fun of these rewards to evaporate. In the same way, I'd say no ribbons for temporary content like tournaments either. (Do they even need a ribbon if they give out a legendary? I doubt it.)
 

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