Growth and Tournaments

this is a follow up to Hogg's thread since the SPL decision has been made. the conversation there deviated from being just about SPL, so it was suggested that i make a new thread.

smogon is (apparently) growing, and more players/communities are asking for representation in the circuit. i will highlight some ways i think this growth can be addressed without lowering the quality of tournaments.

1.) put maximum emphasis on current gen OU.

while current gen OU is already the most represented in official tournaments, i think it should be pushed even more, and there's no better time to do that than moving into a new generation. no other competitive game pushes alternative or previous metas anywhere near as much as smogon in my experience, and i think the website uniting around 1 central tier (while still having some place for lower tiers and old gens) is a good way to push competition.

2.) make official team tournaments extremely exclusive

team tournaments should be the highest level of competitive play on smogon, where the best of the best fight against each other and work together. as such, i think these tournaments need to remain fairly exclusive, and if anything, they need to become even more exclusive than they currently are (this would mean a 10 slot SPL for example, but that discussion is closed for this year).

i do not think team tournaments / representation in team tournaments should grow with the community. as dice pointed out in the previous thread, exclusivity makes these tournaments more competitive.

i think there are better ways to involve a growing community in these exciting events. the way SPL X was promoted, as well as the improved social media presence for tournaments lately, is a good push in that direction. pokemon clearly has some appeal as a "spectator sport" given how well so many youtubers do for our niche game, so i don't think there's any harm in doing even more promotion for official team tournaments in the more casual social media channels.

3.) add more open tournaments

i understand that the circuit is already kind of cluttered, but if community growth is a concern for the tournament team, more accessible tournaments should be created instead of trying to make exclusive tournaments more accessible. if a tournament is made, i believe it needs to be current gen OU only in line with point 1.

an idea i've been kinda throwing around for this is a 3v3 single elimination tournament like the ones we've seen in the unofficial circuit. just a random idea, but i think it's a good way to add another accessible tournament that still stands out from the rest. also could be a nice way to get people more integrated into the community (assigning teams to those that don't sign up with partners, people finding teammates on discord, etc.).


the 3 points above are meant to be broad ideas that i think the TD team should take into consideration. i don't think these ideas are anything too radical, but applying these ideas will definitely be a point of contention.

i think ideal implementation of these ideas would involve
  • making SPL multiple current gen OU slots + 1 of each oldgen OU with no other tiers (even when lower tiers are solidified).
  • making smogon snake draft a LTPL-esque tour with no OU slots and ribbons awarded instead of trophies.
  • introducing an auction-based, all current gen OU team tournament (if snake/wcop are "demoted").
  • adding another open current gen OU tournament as described in my third point.
  • increasing the amount of money in tournaments (if possible).
this way lower tiers and old gens still have ample representation, both in the circuit in general and as trophy tours, but the emphasis is placed on current gen OU. as for WCoP, personally i think the format of the tour is highly uncompetitive and it should be a ribbon tournament, but another more reasonable option would be to go back to the idea of making WCoP all current gen OU. this was proposed in a kinda contentious way, but i think it should be reconsidered given how poor the format of that tournament is.

i hope we can continue the discussion on how to make tournaments and smogon better. lots of good ideas were brought up in the last thread, and it'd suck to see that discussion die just because the SPL decision was finalized.

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