I'm not quite sure how to exactly start this off tbh. I've never wrote something like this before, so naturally this isn't something in my area of expertise. I've seen stuff like this go on for paragraphs, but mine is probably going to be on the shorter end. (Ok this is an edit after I finished it's actually not short lol)
I guess I'll start with this: I never expected to be where I'm at now on Smogon (even though it isn't much), let alone reach 1000 posts. All of a sudden I saw my post count at around 980 and said to myself "Hey I should probably do something". Anyway, like I've said, I didn't foresee myself being where I'm at on this site — and I definitely wasn't expecting to be here for an extended time. My first Pokemon game I got was Pokemon Soul Silver (as a Christmas gift), and I played that non-stop. I definitely utilized the noob strategy of having my level 98 Feraligatr (who still knew Water Gun and Bite btw; I didn't know what any move did and my criteria for keeping a move was 1) if it did damage and 2) if the animation looked cool) do all the work while the rest of my party Pokemon were level 30. To this day my favorite Pokemon are still Feraligatr and Arbok, which were both in my party, and I definitely wanted to play more Pokemon games. I got Platinum as well as every game that came out after HGSS, and I got increasingly better in knowing how to play the game, training Pokemon, etc.
I don't remember from whom exactly, but I started to find videos about competitive Pokemon battling, which interested me a lot. I remembered watching Ubers, OU, and UU battles during BW, especially taking note of what Pokemon were (surprisingly to me at least) good in each tier. Once I found out that Smogon was the main website in regards to competitive battling, I joined. I never bothered lurking enough to know the gist of everything, and I certainly should have in retrospect! I made an RMT that I forgot everything about, but I got a reply that gave me advice, and I was super stoked. I proceeded to play Pokemon Showdown and make teams that I thought were good for random tiers. On Smogon, I made a few more RMTs that were bad and I responded to some RMTs with my own advice that was probably not that great. That's the extent to which I thought I would be on this website. Just a random, unexperienced person making teams that probably weren't good and giving advice that probably didn't help.
Later I took a break from playing Pokemon Showdown and from Smogon, but I kept in touch with the competitive Pokemon scene. I followed the tiers and gained knowledge of how to battle by watching YouTube videos, particularly from pokeaim and blunder, and somewhere in the middle of ORAS, I started playing on Showdown again. I played OU mostly and made 3 more RMTs (which are in my signature) of better quality with teams that were semi-decent imo. During this time I didn't post much on Smogon though. I still follow Ubers and OU quite a lot today, but I don't really play anymore, though I still think I'm competent.
Me becoming a badged user and an active GP member was kind of an accident. At least how I remember it, it was because of the Crawdaunt + Breloom team that's in my signature. In case you don't care enough to look, I was trying to put Poison Heal + Leech Seed SubPunch Breloom on my team. I looked at the Smogon dex for a Breloom set like this and I couldn't find any. Then I thought, after playing with my team, "maybe I can make a new set for this Breloom". I realized that there was a section on Smogon dedicated to analysis creation called Contributions & Corrections, and when I clicked it, I saw "The Grammar-Prose Team Queue". I immediately became interested in that and read up on all I could about trying to apply to be on the team. Grammar was something that I've always been interested in. It isn't taught in school anymore (at least in the US), and to me, knowing grammar means that you were smart! I already self-taught myself a decent amount, and compared to the rest of my irl friends, I was the only one who actually knew what a verb, adverb, and preposition was.
Then I started amchecking. Learning the Grammar Standards was definitely challenging, but I thought I was doing OK tbh. While I was amchecking I received very helpful tips about stuff like dependent vs independent clauses, parallelism, and comma usage from other GPers going over my work. I am still very thankful to them for giving me essential knowledge I needed if I wanted to be part of the team. After amchecking some more, I was confident in my abilities and I sent an application. It was turned down at first due to the lack of material, but I quickly did more amchecks and submitted them a second time. I really beamed when I saw the "You're hired!" in my inbox.
And that's really it as far as my journey on Smogon goes. Being the newest GPer was weird, but I attempted to be the best on the team to the best of my ability by checking analyses and articles. I even made a fair share of analyses myself. From that point on, any of you who know me here know that I've been an active GPer ever since. I did enough GP checks to get my ladybug badge and then my contributor badge, and I looked over amchecks from multiple people, some of whom are now part of the team too! (honestly I'm very curious if any GPer after me submitted an amcheck that I went over. If it was successful in any way then I know I'm doing my job right.)
I'm extremely happy and grateful that I've found a home for myself on Smogon. It's great doing something that I like doing with people that are cool to be around. Even though I'm not that popular (my like ratio a month ago and the number of posts on my profile were/are not impressive), I strive to be more active in C&C to become more known and hopefully make a name for myself (though my username is admittedly very childish, which doesn't exactly help in that aspect). I've actually always wanted to be a moderator/staff member on some sort of forum or game; even back when I played Minecraft I thought being a staff member on a server was super cool. Still, I like my progress thus far and I enjoy where I'm at right now. Maybe years down the road you'll see me become a staff member though, who knows? I'll definitely be here for a while. Anyway, I'm thankful for what I've accomplished on this site so far as well as gaining new friends. My shoutouts are below (in no particular order), though the list probably isn't the biggest in the world, since it's kinda hard for me to write these. If you got an alert you were probably tagged down here.
P Squared you're a great GPTL and social media head, and I especially admire the amount of effort you put in to run the Facebook spotlight project. I remember getting tons of feedback from you when I was an amchecker, either through you going over my checks with insightful commentary or responding to my GP application numerous times, and I'm still very thankful for that. Your positive attitude and feedback made me feel good about trying to join the team.
The Dutch Plumberjack you're also an amazing GPTL and TFP lead. Honestly you and P^2 probably do more work than one might think. First and foremost, I admire your work ethic a lot; you're able to GP check more than anyone else on both analyses and articles, moderate TFP, and probably do other admin things, which I find amazing. Next, you're a great leader in general. You're very understanding and not that strict, but when you say something, the job gets done. I also appreciate the feedback you've given me whether it was advise back when I amchecked, answers to questions I ask, and even help for some private stuff. We also conquered the Ubers tier together, I can't forget that.
Mr. Uncompetitive When I first started amchecking, I remember seeing you all the time checking everything with your Meta Knight avatar that you had lol. Anyway, you're one of the "older GPers" that I talk to more for sure. Our conversations we've had about VGM and other things were fun and I look forward to more in the future. Though like you said before, we probably should start a PM on discord...
CryoGyro we don't talk that much but you're definitely distinguishable from some of the other GPers in my book. We had a little amcheck rivalry going on back in the day, but you beat me to the punch in the end. We also got our contributor badges at the same time as a "fire + ice duo", which was kinda cool.
martha Y'know when I was on the GP team I remember you amchecking with no badges at all. I probably even looked over some of your amchecks. Now you are a TFP moderator with 700 badges, all within the span of how long? Lol yeah I definitely need to catch up!
A Cake Wearing A Hat I also remember when you were an amchecker, and you're still the newest GPer right? Either way, both of us are definitely very active GPers and it's nice checking alongside you. The commentary we give to each other about a certain thing we GP checked is pretty fun too, and so are the PMs. Hopefully you plan to stay around long!
Rakan you don't really GP anymore but I added you on League so we should play sometime.
GatoDelFuegoHulavutabrightobjectyogiavocado you guys make the GP Discord server a very fun, enjoyable, and interesting experience. The countless conversations keep the server active. Some are very funny, and others I found interesting enough to participate, albeit relatively minimally. I've had conversations with some of you individually, and you are cool to talk to.
Rare PoisonlotiasiteEyanEienGMarsfleurdyleurseHaundKrisLemonadetalkingtreeWob and the rest of the GP team in general: it's been fantastic GP checking alongside you, even if some of you are inactive or don't check frequently. I was happy to be accepted by the ones that were here before me, and some of you have looked over my amchecks before. I was also happy to accept the ones who came after me onto the team, and hopefully my advice helped you when I looked over your amchecks.
I would also like to give a shoutout to the current and up-and-coming amcheckers. I haven't seen many amchecks lately myself, but I know other GPers have. Idt I can tag anybody specifically, but if you amcheck and see this, then know that if you like checking and you like what you're doing, then I encourage you to try to get on the team. The GP team is full of very nice people, and we're definitely looking for fresh blood atm.
DMDW Much like you admire my efforts as a GPer, I equally admire your efforts as an analysis writer. You writing every Ubers analysis and me checking every Ubers analysis is a good combo lol. Anyway, the friendship we've made so far has been fantastic and I enjoy the conversations we have. I also hope that the advice I've given you in my GP checks have payed off.
Cynara Even though things started off a bit shaky at first, and I'm still sorry for that, I think that we became friends as a result. You were quick to QC some of my Ubers content, and I look forward to talking to you more.
Nayrz You're a great leader for Ubers. You've shown multiple examples of bringing problems to attention, specifically ones dealing with me or the rest of GP, and they get promptly addressed. Your QC checks, at least for my analyses, are/were very informative. I also enjoy checking your analyses because you write well, and I feel more inclined giving you grammar tips. I've tried my best to GP check Ubers as much as possible... even if it means checking Yveltal later...
Xayah I remember when you were an active QCer for Little Cup, and you checked all my analyses and then I would GP check all of yours. I know you lead ZU now so idk exactly if you're still in LC, since I left that tier. I swear you should have kept amchecking you would've made it on the team.
mellowyellowhd you're my newest fan and I appreciate the admiration you have of me — it really means a lot. You're also the only reason I have over 1000 likes AND a positive like ratio, so thank you!
As of today I am stepping down from my duties as GPTL. It’s pretty obvious over the past year that my checking activity has been on a constant decline, and I think this position should be filled by somebody that can represent the GP team in a much better way than I currently can. I honestly was not prepared for the amount of work I’d be doing in my last years of college and moving into the professional world, but that’s how it is! And I’m happy to leave knowing that GP is in a great place. As dumb as it is I’m really proud of the work I’ve been able to do on GP, even if most of it was before the current era of GP leadership
The GP culture has been an incredibly large part of my time on Smogon and I’m very happy to have known everybody that has been a part of it. This website is truly amazing; many of the people I would call my best friends are people I met online, even though an interest in vaguely competitive Pokemon battling is all that we shared. The good news is that if you interact with me right now, my activity is basically not going to go down from here, and I’m never not going to be part of this community.
OglemiJellicent Thanks to both of you for giving me the chance and dealing with me when I was an insufferable kid. I look back on my early online persona and really cringe and wonder how anybody could have interacted with me. You guys are chill as hell.
Redew We go way, way back, man. The OG duo, Oil Predators. It’s a shame that we didn’t get to know each other as much as we could have but that’s how life works out sometimes.
-Tsunami- you’re a fucking nickname thief and I’m still salty that I was unable to beat you on our one Wi-Fi battle with my curse Cradiliy
P SquaredThe Dutch Plumberjack We’ve shared a ton of smogon’s history and sections and I’m glad I can be friends with great people like you two. I still remember the couple months bringing you two on board and shaping the GP team’s desinty. The summer of 2015 was one of the best times on smogon that I can remember. Working with you two has always been great, and I’m happy to see you both go so far. Not much more to say that we don’t already know!
Hulavuta Honestly I can’t even think of anything I could say here; hopefully the lack of sappiness convinces anybody reading this that we’re ascended far beyond that level.
Minus You rock man, you’ve always been there for me and I’m proud to be friends with you. You really reinvigorated my smogon life in lots of different ways, and you were definitely the start of a new better era for Me.
brightobjectMr. Uncompetitive Everything to the above and more, you two are some of my closest friends here and you never let a day go by without making me laugh
TheorymonRODANinternetshadeMartinStellarDTCEV and all the regulars in smogon server, too many to name here
I never expected to be part of this crowd of people, even years after I got “integrated” into the smogon culture I didn’t think I’d have a place with you guys. But you all keep my day totally chill and for like the 4th time in this post I’m glad to call you guys friends. vonFiedler and Blazade count too, cong bois
If I left u out I’m so so sorry here is the consolation shoutout (absolutely nothing) but I’ve met a lot of great people here and could talk for hours about the experiences on this website. I really couldn’t find any good way to describe the best memories of everybody I have so that’s why I guess I’m chickening out here.
That’s all folks. Adios, and keep it real