Issue #36 Released!

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Toast++

Nexus is literally the worst.
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Yes, it's finally that time: Issue #36 is live! Go check it out over here. When you're done, remember to take the new reader feedback survey located here. Feel free to comment in this thread, as well.

Also, a big thanks to our contributors for making this possible and Magistrum for the cover art for this issue.

- Toast++, Bummer, Flora, sandshrewz, skylight, and Vacate
 
Great work guys! this was my first time back contributing in some way to a smog issue in about a year and it's always a good community to work in.

Great work to the article writers, GP, artists and HTML team (who actually put a shit load of work in)

It's interesting to see how the webzine and forum are seeing new ideas compared to when I left here a year ago and when I just started working for the smog late 2012 it's evolved by the introduction of article approvals subforum, qc for article approvals, mentors that specialise in the smog (seriously if you want help getting involved just contact us), more interactivity regarding the webzine and also a change in the layout of the webzine so it's looks more appealing. All this has happened within two years and I'm sure the webzine will keep evolving as time goes on.

So to people who have questions about the smog don't be shy to ask a mentor who mentors in the smog or ask in the SQSA thread I remember before I started writing for the smog I was a bit intimidated to ask to be a writer or questions that are smog related and there is really no reason to be. I wouldn't like to think that there are users who have questions they want to ask or want to do articles/art for the smog but are to nervous to apply / ask so if you have been considering it for a while go for it this issue!

Now maybe next issue I may pump some articles out who knows ;)
 
HOW TO CROSSWORD
the new puzzles are great fun, I find them more interesting than trivia. the articles this issue were also top notch, great job everybody who was involved!
 

MoxieInfinite

Banned deucer.
Decent one guis. Big fan of Alexwolf, Harsha and Jukain's articles, really interresting reads. More metagame stuff people, maybe some DPP article next time? :D
 

Layell

Alas poor Yorick!
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(this is princessofmusic, posting from layell's account because i'm lazy)

My first article published ;u; I couldn't have done it without my wonderful panelists, either. It feels pretty cool to have come full circle from being just a fan (about a year ago) and not knowing at all what goes on inside the workshop to being part of the process, and it heightens my respect for everyone involved. I look forward to contributing again.
 

Knuckstrike

Hi I'm FIREEEE
http://www.smogon.com/smog/issue36/xy-hazards
Just a nitpick, but in this article, Drilbur was stated as capable of learning Stone Edge, which is not true.
Otherwise, great job on the issue. I've been waiting for this
And, also, can someone explain for me how to play the 1st part in the Puzzle Section? With Parameters and things?
The parameters are like 'data' from pokemon. Possible parameters are moves, types, abilities, colours, debut generation, stuff like that. You will need to find the data that matches the pokemon given. For example, if the pokemon would have been 'Garchomp, Gabite, Gible' the answer would be 'Dragon type, ground type, 4' Because they're the only dragon/ground types from generation 4. What would also work as an answer is 'Blue, Rough skin, Dragon claw' because they're the only pokemon with the ability rough skin that are both blue and learn dragon claw.
If they're asking about exclusions that means that is data the pokemon would not have. 'Blue, rough skin, !dark pulse' would also work because they don't learn dark pulse.
 

Pikachu315111

JAPE Judge!
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If you don't mind I'll like to post some of my thoughts on a few articles:

Moves That Would Make Life More Interesting
Fun idea for an article! :D Life would be pretty interesting if we could use Pokemon moves, even if there are some unfortunate implications. First I want to make a couple of the mentioned moves:

Pay Day: How does Pay Day exactly work? You can just materialize spendable money? And it's not that rare of a move, any Meowth can learn it at level 30. You're pretty much making counterfeit money! No wonder Lemonade in the Pokemon world costs 350! (and before you say anything, I know PokeMoney is based on the Yen, though still that's 3 bucks for a lemonade!)

Mind Reader: Hate to tell you, but Mind Reader's description says you're simply sensing what movements your opponent will make, you're not actually reading minds. You could still use that to your advantage in some of the situations (like knowing what answer your friend is putting down on his test or what move he's about to make in chess/Pokemon battling). But sadly you can't read the mind of you crush or find out your friend's passwords.

AND now I'll suggest a few move of my own:

Covet/Thief/Trick/Snatch/Switcheroo: Pay for things? Pfft, just take them.
Extreme Speed/Agility: SUPER SPEED!
Present: The prankster's dream move. Give someone an explosion or something that restore's their energy? Who knows, the results would be funny to watch anyway (especially if it explodes).
Rock Climb: Who needs rock climbing equipment? Heck, you can probably scale anything you want.
Strength: SUPER STRENGTH!
Acupressure/Aromatherapy/Calm Mind/Meditate: Feeling stressed? Use these to relax yourself.
Attract/Captiate: Pfft, forget figuring out if you crush likes you. MAKE them like you. Unfortunate implications, AWAY!
Camouflage: Don't want to be found? Turn invisible!
Copycat/Mimic: Ever wanted to perfectly do something? Just watch someone else do it and copy them!
Follow Me: Want attention? This is your move!
Happy Hour: Possibly even worse than Pay Day! It doubles the money you win instead of simply making a small amount of money from winning a battle. And who says it's just from battle? Maybe you got your paycheck today, use Happy Hour, suddenly you have twice as much money!
Harden: Had to. Bow chicka bow wow!
Heal Bell: Not feeling so well? Heal Bell assures you'll never feel ill again! Also works on burns and being paralyzed!
Lock-On: Never miss anything ever again. Become a pro athlete in no time!
Lucky Chant: Get lucky!
Me First: Never wait on lines again.
Milk Drink: Um, better leave this one to the imagination.
Protect: Protect yourself from harm.
Psych Up: Get yourself excited!
Recover: Injured or low on energy? Just heal yourself!
Sweet Scent/Aromatic Mist: Never smell bad again!
Transform: Let your mind had find with this one.
Fly: FLY!
Rototiller: Great for lawn work!
Diamond Storm: Even BETTER than Pay Day or Happy Hour! Create diamonds! DIAMONDS!
Ember: For when you need a fire. Honestly any Fire-type attack can do that, but let's not try overdue things.
Sunny Day: No more rainy days!
Surf/Waterfall/Dive/Whirpool: Never be afraid to swim again!
Scald/Brine: Great for cooking!
Rain Dance: Don't feel like going out to warden the garden/wash the car/wash the dog?
Grassy Terrain: Refertilize the lawn!
Parabolic Charge/Charge: Who needs batteries or plugging something into an outlet? Most Electric-type moves would probably work, but these just seems like the most obvious one to use.
Future Sight: Predict the future! Or at least when something bad is about to happen!
Role Play: Become the best cosplayer EVER.
Freeze-Dry: Never have leftovers go to waste ever again.
Topsy-Turvey: Something bad/unwanted happen? Make it into something good/wanted!

Well that was fun, and I'm sure there's a ton more I missed. So yeah fun article that gets you thinking.


Judge A Pokemon: Wingin' It
I always enjoy design discussions, always interesting to hear different and sometimes opposite opinions on the same thing. For what's its worth, here are my thoughts:

Articuno: Much like the panel said, it's a very simple design but it works. I do like it's flowing tail, but that's pretty much the only thing that stands out about it (I never really put too much on the "ice crown"). The tail is the only thing which really gives it its serene presence, otherwise its just a giant blue jay.
Zapdos: I like Zapdos's design of all the Legendary Birds/Winged Mirages. It's simple sure, but it's done in a way to make it look like it's nothing you want to mess with! The black feathers do work really well with the yellow feathers. The brown bits are odd, mainly because I can't tell if they're suppose to be coming out of the yellow feathers or are over them. But you still can't beat that evil glare in its eyes.
Moltres: Well Fire-types are my favorite type, Moltres is my second favorite of the batch. It has the same problem are Articuno, it looks like a normal bird sand the flames. I do like the places the flames were placed, they don't overtake the design. I think my main problem with Moltres is that its yellow which is Zapdos's color. It should have been a deep reddish-orange, enough so that it doesn't blend with the flames.
Ho-Oh: I'm sorry for those who like Ho-Oh, when I see Ho-Oh I just see a Moltres without its flames (and parts of it sort of remind me of Fearow). Parts of its designs are interesting like the head and tail feathers. But then there's nothing else. One thing I found most odd about Ho-Oh is that it's related to rainbows yet the only part of its design which could possibly relate to that are its green wing feathers. Shouldn't it have multi-colored feathers, not just green? I don't have anything against Ho-Oh, but it's design doesn't really speak much to me.
Lugia: Pfft, RODAN, Skylight, and Antemortem doesn't know what they're talking about, Lugia > Ho-Oh. Okay, maybe they have some credence, but Lugia looks WAY more better than Ho-Oh. It's design is unique and distinct, it colors are simple yet bold, instead of trying to be graceful it's ready to MESS YOU UP (which is kind of odd since Lugia is defensive and Ho-Oh is offensive). The hand wings are a bit odd at first, though they don't look too out of place when it's not using them has hands and it sort of fits with it being a Psychic-type. The body spikes too look off though they do serve a function as seen in the 2nd movie. I think the main problem is that you can't really look at Lugia as a bird, it's a bird-shaped monster. Actually it's based on a sea dragon called a Ryujin, hence it being master of the sea. Of course it's a sea dragon yet Psychic/Flying. Probably should have been Dragon/Flying or even Dragon/Water (maybe as a Mega Evolution?). But still, I'd pick Lugia over Ho-Oh anyway, it's design stands out and dares to be different from all the other birds.


Smeargle's Studio Update
Well art is subjective, so here's my opinions on what's presented:

CONTESTS:
MAC #24: Retyping:
1st Place:
A Fighting-type Stunfisk? Interesting combination though I'm surprised how well it works together. It looks like it would have an interesting fighting style, considering its face is on the other side of its body so it'll probably be constantly bending all over the place to not only see what it's doing but also spot any weaknesses. I also like the red "!" on its body, as if it's warning you it's about ready to make your flop like a fish.
2nd Place: So it seems like no matter what form Bronzong takes it'll always look a bit creepy, good to know. Anyway, who doesn't love a metal dinosaur? I'm sure if this Steel/Dragon Bronzong was a real Pokemon that about half of them would be named "Grimlock". Anyway very nice piece, at a quick glance you could easily mistake it for just being a pure Dragon with some glowing bits, it's not till you look closer do you see it's actually mechanical in nature. It also does a good job looking ancient, like ancient people tried recreating a Tyrantrum after finding a skeleton of one.

MAC #25: Pokemon Trainers:
1st Place: A bittersweet picture. It's sad to think that Youngster Joey would become homeless, but every cloud has its silver lining and though the world might have abandoned him, his Rattata hasn't! The vast amount of detail is also nice, making you feel like you're in an actual city alleyway (well, one in a Noir film being there's no color). In addition of drawing the bricks there's also texture, cracks, and gaps. The garbage can's lid is open revealing garbage bags. You can see that some windows have drapes while others don't (and possibly a face looking outside one). There's words on signs, poster, and graffiti on the wall. Even the ground has details like the cardboard Joey is sitting on and a grate which a faucet is dripping water into. And of course the design of Joey shows his homelessness but also a small smile as he looks upon his sleeping Rattata.
2nd Place: A nice looking piece, that trainer definitely looks like someone who would use Dragon-types like Haxorus. Haxorus was given addition detail to make its yellow parts looks more scaly which I would say worked nicely. The main display on the trainer is his face which is very anime: triangular face, wild spiky hair (though it sort of reminds me of N's hair), and eyes which look a bit unnatural. Sadly that's all there is except for a lot of green, but the artist did a good job making the trainer and Haxorus stand out with thick lines and bold colors.

MAC #26 - Mega Evolutions:
1st Place:
Not a bad Mega Kingler, I like the design of the head though that's really all I can say. Okay, true, Kingler pretty much IS just a head with skinny feet and two claws, but still it feels like more could have been done to make it a bit more distinguished from normal Kingler. I don't know, I just look at the claws and think more could have been one with them. And yes I see the big one has been enhanced a bit, it's not that much of a difference (though I do like that "tooth" on its side).
2nd Place: A piece more about the post rather then the Mega Evolution, which is rather lacking. Mega Raikou more looks like a sort of "Primal Raikou" with it not really changing its shape while having several parts of its body now glowing. The artist makes the colors stand out and blend together real nicely, though if GameFreak was to reveal this as Mega Raikou I'd be a bit disappointed. But as I said, this piece is about the pose and what a pose it is. Raikou standing tall and proud amongst a fierce thunderstorm, its cloudy mane blowing and charged with electricity as it stands atop what looks to be stone ruins. Though he didn't do much with its design, you'd still probably run away from it if you saw this thing standing in a middle of a storm which it might have created.

NEW ARTIST: Blue Frog

The two pieces shown here shows he has a nice range of styles.
The first picture at first looks just like a plain group shot of all the blue frog Pokemon, but close inspection would reveal it has a bit or personality to it, mostly comedic. Greninja's tongue is laying across Politoed's head (though it doesn't seem to mind), Toxicroak wants you to draw him like your Kalos girls, Croagunk doesn't look like he's having much fun, Poliwhirl is trying to get a better look over the crowd, and Froakie seems tired as Frogadier looks at it bemused.
However he also can do nice stylized work as shown with a stain glass window-like Volcarona piece. Each part is separated by a nice thick line as they fit together to form a Volcarona flying up to the clouds as flames surround it. At least I think, to be honest it is kind of hard to tell what the orange parts on the clouds are suppose to be and I have no clue what's that suppose to be on the top left. However it's still a nice piece that you might see in a place worshiping Volcarona (it can be used as a substitute sun, afterall).


What's Missing From OU?

These are one of the type of articles I like to read. They discuss new ways the game can be improved, this one about certain kinds of Pokemon which the game is missing (well, OU is missing, but still I wouldn't be surprised if this also branched out to other tiers and parts of the metagame as well).

Fast Grass-type: I'll admit when I think Grass-type I never really think of Speed. That said with the upcoming Mega Sceptile that could be the answer to this problem. With it being part Dragon-type it'll be an offensive Pokemon so it'll probably be able to threaten the main threats. Of course it won't have immunity to Secret Sword or Dragon Rush (infact it'll be weak to that) nor does it get the Abilities you listed, however it does get Lightning Rod which gives it switch-in potential and become a Special Sweeper.
Sturdy Rock-type With Reliable Recovery: Boy, I can imagine that thing being annoying to deal with. No chance to 1HKO it and if you don't do more thank half damage it can fully heal itself.
Fast Fairy-type: With a type like Fairy-type you'd think there would be a fast Fairy already.

That's all I really have to contribute here. I would say the ideas suggest would make for interesting Pokemon, course the question is what kind of Pokemon would it be? I suppose that's a question for another day.


Underrated Abilities in the Balanced Hackmons Metagame
Another article that catches my interest, this one taking Abilities and revealing possible uses for them. Of course this article uses existing Pokemon, but hey that could lead to other ideas.

Illusen Mega Gengar: I'm going to take a guess that in Hackmon that a Mega Pokemon can start a battle already Mega evolved, otherwise I don't think Illusen on any Mega Pokemon would be that helpful.
Soundproof + Perish Song: Now that's just downright evil.
No Guard: I was expecting to see something like No Guard + Sheer Cold (I'm going to guess Hackmon runs on Smogon's rules so 1HKO moves are not allowed?).

Hackmon certainly looks like an interesting game, though some of those moveset and Ability combinations don't look so balanced (then again I suppose when everyone is just as broken there's some sort of twisted balance thing).


Normal-types in the STABmons Metagame
Another interesting concept (though I'd imagine types which doesn't have an immunity would work the best in this kind of game, but still). Normal-type moves are mainly overlooked unless they're extremely powerful or are a handy status move, so seeing them being used in unique ways is a nice change of pace. They're completely walled by Ghost-types (then again so are pure Ghost-types against them), but I guess when you're using all of one move type that's bound to happen.

Meloetta: So would a Meloetta be allowed to carry Normal, Psychic, and Fighting-type moves? Or being this is Hackmon are you allowed to just start off with a Piroutte Melotta thus no need for Relic Song?
Transform Chansey: Poor Blissey, it really needs to be given a Mega Evolution to compete with its pre-evolution. Anyway, once again, kind of evil. Though with that said I never understood why Ditto loses the effects of it's items upon transforming. They're made for Ditto, shouldn't they've been made to be able to give it their effects upon transforming?
Kangaskhan: Ah yes, forgot about Scrappy. That said, surprised Mega Kangaskhan isn't on the list as I'd imagine it would be fun to see how broken you could get Parental Bond to be.
Ditto: So... Ditto works the same way in Hackmon... well I guess if a gimmick works...
Bouffalant: There's that evil Soundproof + Perish Song combo again. Surprised you didn't mention teaching it Moon Look or Block for the final nail in the coffin.

I'm hoping there's more articles for the other types, this was quite interesting to see how a Pokemon deals with only having its type to use.


I'll do my final edit for the articles in Other Features next time. :)
 
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alexwolf

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Small nitpick, but i think it would be better if there was an empty line between the headline and the paragraph following, in the ''What's missing from OU'' article. Congrats to everyone that contributed in this issue, good job guys!
 
Love that new crossword and the puzzle page. Also enjoyed the whole Remember Our Roots series. Great job to everyone who made this possible!
 

EonX

One and Only
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Thanks to everyone who helped me along with the RU Spotlight article this issue. (which was my first ever) Had a great time working with all of you. A lot of great reads in this one. I look forward to contributing again very soon.
 

alexwolf

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Btw, in the Trace user paragraph, in the second line from the end, the word ''punish'' is capitalized while it shouldn't. Also, it would be nice if someone could remove the word ''Defensive'' from the headline of the Trace user, because as it turned out i didn't talk about a defensive Pokemon, but about a bulky one, and i forgot to correct the tittle.

Talking about the ''What's missing from OU'' article.

Vacate edit: Done.
 
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Anty

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Best edition so far, as always i have been browsing through puzzles (better than trivia imo). Just a nitpick, but the battle in this thread doesnt work, i know its rly small but i really like that article (rip bw) and it woild be nice to see it

Keep up the good work!
 
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