SPOILERS! I'm retiring.

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Hulavuta

Windy
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Community Leader Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
Here listen to this while reading.

Back in November, The Dutch Plumberjack pointed out that I'm actually the longest-standing current section leader, having been appointed back all the way back in August 2014. I thought that was really cool; I'm kind of a bridge between the old smogon and the new smogon. Over the past four years, I have definitely seen the general tone of this forum change from really cliquey and exclusive to much more friendly and inclusive.

As much as I'd like to continue my record as the longest-standing section leader, I've realized it's time for me to retire. I had originally considered it back in August actually, because of some frustrations I had with the community at the time. However, I didn't want to act rashly and quit just because I was angry. So I stayed on and I'm happy to say I can leave on a high note and on good terms with all the wonderful people here, and that I'm leaving for the right reasons.

The simple truth is that I'm just too busy now to devote time to running the forum. I stayed on as long as I could to see if I'd be able to make time, and I really haven't been able to. I was first appointed mod of the forum a week before starting college. And it was really amazing to have both of those experiences happening at the same time, they definitely helped me to learn a lot. Now, I'm due to graduate soon and I'm trying to get into graduate school and a full-time job. At this point, it makes more sense for me to focus on getting my career in order and devote time to my creative pursuits, like my band and my writing. I've always been very critical of users that aren't involved in their community anymore but still hold on to their power, so it makes no sense for me to be a hypocrite and do the same thing.

When the former section leader, JabbaTheGriffin, handed over the IRC room to me (this was a REALLY long time ago, okay) he said "Good luck making Battle Spot big on Smogon." Back then, when Age of Kings and I were first appointed to be the leaders of the section, there really was no community. There were a few regular users that popped in and out, but there was no real community. The Pokemon Showdown room was not integrated with the forum at all, and the userbase on each was completely different. We didn't have any huge goals for the forum; we just meant to enforce the rules, settle disputes, and clean things up. I'm happy to say that it was the users, like cant say, like Theorymon, like NOVED, ethan06, or DragonWhale, who had a bunch of ideas for new projects on the forum. And cant say and I really felt pushed to keep up with the enthusiasm of our users and manage all of those ideas. It was definitely a good problem to have.

Because of that, we now have a full official C&C section, an active Discord room, bunch of twitch streams, and a new official tournament circuit. These kinds of things would be inconceivable back in 2014. There were a few times I had thought of retiring but ultimately decided against it, because I felt like as a leader, I still had a lot to offer, and the section needed me. I'm proud to say that now, I'm completely comfortable with all of the users who have stepped up in this four years and completely confident in their ability to keep the section going. At this moment, I can safely say if Battle Spot isn't big yet, it definitely will be soon.

AoK (and later cant say) knew we were basically building up the community from nothing and could set the tone of the forum early on, and build it on a foundation of inclusiveness and friendliness that, at the time, wasn't really in a lot of other forums. I'm happy to say that we were successful and we have one of the nicest and friendliest forums around. I won't get into specific shout-outs but I'd like to thank all of the awesome users here who make this place a ton of fun and really made the experience worthwhile (except Ullar, I will tag him because it's just too much fun to not do it). I'd also like to thank cant say and DragonWhale for not putting any pressure on me to make this decision and being really patient with my indecision (if anything, they both wanted me to stay, lol). It definitely says a lot about their integrity and makes me confident about the forum being in good hands. I also want to thank Stellar for appointing me section leader back in 2014, and I'm happy that his faith in me was rewarded.

Smogon wasn't the only site that I was a moderator for, but it was definitely the most rewarding and enriching.

On a final note, even though I'm officially retiring, I'm still not going anywhere. I still love Smogon and all the friends I've met here and I'll still go on every day. So feel free to message me on here or Discord or anything like that, my activity is not changing at all. I might even get involved in another part of the site as time goes on. So don't miss me too much!

Thanks for reading and thanks for the great experience! :heart:
 

chemcoop

When in doubt, Rock Slide out!
is a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Tiering Contributor
I remember way back when I first started on Showdown (basically 14 months ago lol), you were the first staff member that I really connected with and made me feel welcome/accepted in the community. Thanks for everything you've done to help the BattleSpot community grow, thrive, and become the friendly and inclusive place we all know and love.
 

Lego

Formally LegoFigure11
is a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Community Contributor
Here listen to this while reading.

Oh my gosh Hula where do I even start. Thank you so much not only for the hugely influential role you've played in making this amazing community what it is today, but also for the massive impact you've had on me as an individual. I'm not sure I've ever told you this before but I've always looked up to you. The 10 points in your about tab are truly words to live by and I aspire to incorporate them into my own character more and more each day, so, because we both know that you should never make big statements lightly, you can take it as the absolute truth when I say that you've improved me as a person immensely. I've always admired your ability to accept and understand everyone, and stay cool, patient, and level headed when handling all manner of situations, and your sense of humour is something truly out of this world. You were great when I was just starting out in this community, answering my dumb questions and passing me teams and advice when I asked for it (Ok, maybe I stole them from your RMTs, but still), and you've only gotten better since then. It's always a pleasure to talk with you about anything, and I probably consider you one of my closest friends on this site. It's great to hear that you're moving on with your life but promise you'll stick around for a bit because otherwise I'll miss you :'(

So yeah, thanks for everything you've done for me and for the community man, and I hope Grad school/full-time employment goes amazingly for you man!
Stay groovy my dude.
 

cant say

twitch.tv/jakecantsay
is a member of the Site Staffis a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Super Moderatoris a Community Contributoris a Team Rater Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
Battle Spot Leader
LISTEN TO THIS AND LISTEN CAREFULLY WHILE READING THE THREAD AND REMINISCING ABOUT HULA

Hulavuta was my first friend on this website, actually he was my first actual internet friend. Like TFA I was pretty shy back in the day, it took Hula a long time to convince me to come on IRC, but I finally did and it was a big turning point for me both on this site and socially in general. I owe him a lot and I'm really grateful, thanks for everything you did for this community.
 

BP

Champagne and Pools
Yo wtf why is everyone retiring all of a sudden. First my boi from CAP and now Hula. man what time to be alive.

I'll miss you Hula even though we haven't really gotten to talk or really meet each other.
 

DragonWhale

It's not a misplay, it's RNG manipulation
is a Top Smogon Social Media Contributoris a Community Leaderis a Community Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderator
Battle Spot Leader
Sad to see the nicest staff member in this section retire... I'm worried about the future of this section when I'm not friendly enough to cancel out cant say's meanness :pirate:

Thanks for all that you've done for this community. It most likely would've never reached where it is now if you didn't hold the different parts together all these years, and I'm happy you were able to see it pay off. Like a lot of others, you were a great friend ever since I started becoming a regular user here. Good luck on your future endeavours and hopefully you'll still continue to chat with us even after retiring your responsibilities.
 

Xen

Fish Pokémon Connoisseur
is a Top Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnus
I remember back several years ago when the OI IRC channel held weekly movie nights (at this point they were watching episodes from the Battle Frontier arc). I was super-shy back then and really only lurked around, but one night I decided to jump on to watch and observe the channel from the sidelines. I initially didn't plan to chat that night, but it only took a few minutes in for me to say "ah, what the hell," and jump straight into the chat to poke fun at the episodes with everyone else. I still remember one particular scrub that was quick to welcome me into the group once I settled in and started chatting, and later that night I even saw his Felix the Cat avatar here in my followers list.

Thank you for all the hard work you've done for the community! I know building the Battle Spot community from the ground up must've been a daunting task, but looking back at how we met and your friendly and welcoming personality, it honestly doesn't surprise me that you managed to succeed in fostering this community from a mere sapling of users into what it is today.

Good luck with your future endeavors! Hopefully you'll stick around though; the Discord channel wouldn't be the same if you leave. Plus I haven't yet been able to play Pictionary with you guys because you always do it when I'm busy. :pirate:
 

ethan06

⋖(☼┆☼)⋗
is a Community Contributor Alumnus
you don't have to listen to this while reading, but if you do do it ironically

i think i'd be the first to admit that i'm kind of a background user in this section. i've been around since the start, and i did my bit in getting it off the ground way back when, but recently i've just kind of hung around, played occasionally, not put myself in the centre of things, it's been chill. point is, while i love everyone who frequents this section, or used to, i can count on the fingers of one hand the best friends who really make sticking around worthwhile, just because i'm really fucking hard to engage on any meaningful level. old mate Hulavuta is the middle finger of that hand for sure, and the others know who they are but man, hula was there at the very start, and did so much to make sure i felt welcome enough to stick around the first couple of times i publicly embarrassed myself, and eventually became as good a pal to me as anyone i know irl. lookin forward to seeing what kind of hula we get now that he doesn't have to be the big boss anymore. love him, top guy. that is all
 
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