np: SM UU Stage 4.2 - Paper Planes (Latias-Mega Banned)

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that would be all fine and dandy if you somehow manage to find out it’s set within the first few turns but y’know... that’s not how shit usually goes down

if i’m using mlati, i’m not revealing its offense until your check is gone/weakened enough to get muscled past. not like this is a difficult task with 140 base SpA and it’s insane bulk.
So I'd like to give my reasons why I'll be voting ban for Mega Latias. I understand it's not impossible to beat Mega Latias but I'd argue that the lengths you have to go to to have an answer for every set heavily restricts team building. There really just aren't many options to cover Mega Latias to begin with and very few of them have reliable recovery. Many Pokemon in the tier just can't do meaningful damage to Mega Latias so there usually needs to be an immediate response when it comes in. This combined with the fact its counterplay is limited and its sets are variable enough to get by all its counters makes prediction very difficult for the player opposing Mega Latias and easy for the player using it. This leads to the player opposing Mega Latias usually getting their checks and counters to it worn down enough that late game there's nothing left to stop it. In my opinion this, combined with the reasons others have stated, makes it have a very unhealthy effect on game play and team building. Thankfully I wasn't late getting reqs this time and I'll be able to vote ban.
Below is an index of the posts I found quite helpful to make my decision. As you can see, the variety of them ranges from flawed views to quality stances on the suspect both pro ban and no ban. Beside each hyperlink to the writers post will be what I got out of reading it. If you still are questioning whether to vote ban or not, I suggest giving these posts a second look.

(_1_) Hogg's thread introductory post: Outlines the basis of why M-latias is being suspected. Really helpful to members who struggle to understand the meta. I used this because I've been out of UU for quite some time. Song reminds me of slum dog millionaire.

(_2_) Hikari's swing post: People in the last suspect and at the beginning of the thread were set on banning Mlati. Hikari's post provides support for the opposition. It states that the best pokemon in the tier is not always need to be banned. This made me think a lot about oras suicune and the similarities.

(_3_) Hogg's assist post: Very in-depth post on everything to do with Mlati from how it operates to its effects on the tier. This was the post that made me question whether the tier was unbalanced at this point. I have been assuming it was the entire time. Also first and only post to mention the suicune similarity. It's rather long but if you have the time, its good stuff.

(_4_) Sacri's reinforcement post: The objective of this post was to show that mlati is better on paper than in practice. When watching the replays and reading the descriptions, I didn't quite get that feeling. This post had a lot of support, but it didn't sell me on its intention.

(_5_) Eaglehawk's bash post: Pointed out that you can often figure out what set mlati is running based on team composition. Something I didn't consider. Also a fun read.

(_6_) ACakeWearingAHat's salvation post: Shows a player that was converted to keeping mlati in the tier. I feel like these support posts were unintentionally strategic.

(_7_) Geezer's give up post: Just really funny seeing how some players think. A reminder to not think like this. It helps nothing.

(_8_) Kokoloko's conviction post: Plants a seed in a very simple post for pro ban.

(_9_) Nightingale's assist post: Suggests that latias is not hard to support. This goes against the common "requires a significant amount of team support" argument.

(_10_) Eaglehawk's targeting post: Retarded viewpoint. The post is contradictory. It shames others for analyzing too close, but it fails to see that logically no one brings in mlati on a sylveon, but people do bring sylveon in on mlati. That's enough time for 2 cms. What happens after that should be obvious.

(_11_) TSR's callback post: Reminds the tread of Hikari's strong speculation on the suspect. Didn't have the patients to read it all.

(_12_) Manipulative's pro ban post: Besides all the latias and mlati games he claims there was, I have very similar thoughts to this post. It addresses a lot of the previous posts without blatantly calling them out. Well constructed.

(_13_) Sacri's call out post: Well deserved. The latias mlati prediction argument was weak. This does not take away from the rest of Manip's post. A lot of his points still are valid.

(_14_) Kokoloko's assurance post: States that UU messed up and banning is the way to fix it. Also gives us a list of pokemon that should beat dragon types that don't beat mlati. It shows constriction on teambuilding.

(_15_) Tony's bandwagon post: States that he sides with Hikari, Hogg, and Sacri while giving an example on how to counter mlati's versatility. I feel this post was more harmful to his cause than good. It gives me the feeling that I have to take up multiple team and move slots in order to beat one pokemon because of its versatility. That just sounds like no fun.

(_16_) Kokoloko's rebuttle post: Explains the reality of the mlati counter play situation. Reinforces the opinion that latias support is easy/ natural.

(_17_) xMarth's pro ban post: Appeals to the team building constraint argument. Does a great job. His stance on the vote aligns with mine.

The suspects for me have always been about teambuilding. I feel that if the ban favors that of the builder, it will make the tier more enjoyable. I had a lot of fun getting reqs in this suspect. Far more fun than the weavile suspect, however, I do not think that is a result of mlati. I think it is pretty clear that it is a result of weavile no longer being in the tier. This vote seems like a gamble. I've read through the arguments and counter arguments good and bad. I will vote ban. I would like to hear a no ban argument addressing the building constraints with mlati. I'm wavering so it might just change my mind.


ban all garden sneks
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I swear the next time I see something like specially defensive Tornadus run Toxic that shouldn't be running it, I'm going to shove a cupful of Clorox bleach straight into my fucking mouth and swallow it because this is some next level ridiculous shit I'm seeing on the ladder.

You guys were aware of my stance on Mega Latias pre-suspect and quite frankly, I'm under the impression that nothing has really changed for the better. I would also like to reinforce my point in the last np thread that 4mss isn't really a big issue; let's not sit here suck our thumbs and pretend that none of this shit plays into the Latias user's hands when so many players still end up succumbing to the pressure of Mega Latias despite packing like 4 different checks to it just because scouting for moves isn't exactly the easiest thing lmao. I'm even going to go out on a limb and say that I accounted for two of Koko's losses on the suspect ladder because Mega Latias just ended up finishing matches no matter what he had on his team so I can easily back him up on what he said. Just because each set has its own drawbacks doesn't mean jack shit when all it takes is one lapse in the opponent's concentration to completely throw them off with their pants down, and lone behold, nothing punishes misplays better than Mega Latias does. With all brutal honesty, this is coming from someone who has run exactly one Mega Latias set between the Weavile suspect and this suspect.

I also think the counterplay argument against Mega Latias is really flawed; sure, most of us are adjusting by running shit like extra Toxic users, Beedrill>Megaman on Voltturn, and Alolan Muk, but are we seriously taking into account what happens when Mega Latias users make those counter adjustments? Sure, this ties into "team support" (which shouldn't even be a fucking argument in the first place because it synergizes well with literally every top tier 'mon), but lately I've been seeing more shit like Offensive Mega Latias (for the love of God stop saying this shit is outclassed by Z-Latias because it's clearly not) or Reflect Type and you can bash those sets all you want, but to literally no surprise, I'm still seeing those sets completely upending opponents despite them bringing extra "answers" to it. Alternatively, you can also do what I did and not change a single damn thing on my team because even with zero Heal Bell support, I still managed to run through half of my opponents with the same retarded Mega Latias set I've been running this entire time.

And as a last note on this test, I've killed about 8 more Scizors with Mega Latias in the 61 battles I did. Slight improvement, but no cookie.
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I would like to follow up on dingbat post. After watching a lot of matches in the suspect test, the argument that it’s very prone to status is a rather flawed argument. Hell, ANYTHING is prone to status in this meta. You got mons throwing toxic like monkeys flinging dung. This is ridiculous. I have seen so many choice mons with toxic, mons that’s shouldn’t even need toxic, and shit that supposedly can “beat” M-Lati run toxic. Banning it is what’s best for the tier right now. I mean unless you’re just playing completely reckless with M-Lati or someone is running a team full of stuff to try and beat it, it will find its way to beat the opposing team or at least find a way to weaken the opposing team.


I now use The Reinhardt.
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Building on what kokoloko, xMarth, and dingbat have said, Mega Latias places too much pressure on teambuilding to be a healthy influence on UU. While it's true that no individual Mega Latias is broken and that all of them have counterplay on an individual level, Mega Latias has a method of bypassing any check and it's not necessarily clear from Team Preview which set the opponent is running. Mega Latias checks vary widely between sets (for example, Klefki checks most sets, but loses to Refresh or Reflect Type) and many of them, like Klefki and Muk-Alola, are easy to overload.

While laddering, I noticed that balance teams seemed to be more prevalent than in earlier metas, which I think is a function of the fact that most of the available counterplay to Mega Latias is defensive in nature (just consider the random Toxics thrown on a whole bunch of Pokemon). Mega Latias is so fast and so bulky that most offensive Pokemon either can't do meaningful damage to it at all or get outsped and KO'd by the appropriate coverage move, which severely limits its offensive counterplay. Pokemon requiring primarily defensive (or offensive) counterplay isn't necessarily a bad thing (for example, checking Flame Orb Guts Heracross defensively is somewhat difficult, but it seems to be an acceptable part of the meta). However, Mega Latias takes this to an unhealthy extreme, especially considering how many ways it has to bypass its nominal answers to begin with. While I do think that balance becoming a more viable playstyle is a good thing, especially considering its state throughout most of the gen, I don't think that Mega Latias essentially forcing a relatively small number of defensive answers onto teams is a good thing and would much rather see balance instead achieve rough parity with offense and stall by ensuring that the overall power of the tier allows it to function effectively.

I'd like to expand upon Manipulative's early point about preparing for both regular Latias and Mega Latias and extend that to cover the sheer number of offensive threats present in the meta. Matchup issues and power creep increase with every generation, but I think that these problems are especially egregious in SM, due to the introduction of Z-Moves (for the record, I think Z-Moves are awful for competitive Pokemon, but it doesn't seem like Smogon as a whole ever intends to address that). Even without a Mega Evolution, Latias can abuse Z-Moves in order to remove Pokemon that ostensibly check it and is far more difficult to play around than it would be without this mechanic. The additional offensive options that Mega Latias can provide, such as move combinations that normal Latias wouldn't be able to get away with running and the sheer combined bulk and power of fully offensive sets (like dingbat said, fully offensive Mega Latias is quite good), exacerbate this problem even further.

I think that Mega Latias's speed, bulk, power, and versatility are too much for the tier and will be voting Ban. I apologize if this post isn't the most eloquent or if I didn't fully explain certain points, but it's late and I'm tired. If anyone requires clarification, feel free to respond here or contact me directly.
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grubbing in the ashes
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Well, most people have voted already, so I doubt I'll really sway anybody's opinion, but after getting reqs on two separate alts and playing over a hundred and fifty games on the suspect ladder, I've actually moved my position even further into the no-ban camp. In fact I'll go farther and say that Latias-Mega is actually one of the things that is making the current meta so fun.

Balance as a playstyle has more or less diminished. The rise of Flame Orb Conkeldurr was pretty much the death of balance in SM UU, and even after its ban, the constant introduction of new threats made balance teams really difficult to run. It was hard to properly switch in to the top threats in UU without veering all the way over into stall/semistall territory. Most teams either went fully defensive or else focused on offensively checking what they could. That's not necessarily a bad thing—I don't think that it's necessarily a tier leader's job to preserve one playstyle over another—but it definitely meant a lot of limiting factors from a teambuilding perspective.

Recently though, following the last two bans, we've seen a huge surge in balance teams. Part of that is definitely that Gardevoir-Mega is gone, because yeah, Gardy was a fucking meatgrinder for balance teams. But another big thing was the rise in MLati. I've already compared it to Suicune in an earlier post, and I think that comparison still stands for CM sets, but actually the 'mon it reminds me of the most is Zapdos. MLati in UU right now is fulfilling for balance a lot of the roles that Zapdos did in SM OU and ORAS UU: it provides a defensive check to a wide swath of threats without completely giving up offensive momentum. This is a godsend to balance teams right now, and from looking at the many balance teams I saw/used, MLati was often the lynchpin of said teams. Of the four teams I used, my two favorites were both balance teams that could not have functioned without the immense utility of bulky 3 attacks + Roost MLati (one with BoltBeam + HP Fire, one with Draco/Psyshock/HP Fire). We also had a number of other prominent balance teams this suspect, such as Pearl's recent RMT. All in all, I saw far more flexibility in this meta than I've seen in a long time.

As for the fact that sometimes Latias-Mega still wins, even when you prep for it... well yeah, no shit, it's a top threat for a reason. Over the course of my laddering I definitely lost a couple of games to it even though my teams were pretty well prepped. I also beat a hell of a lot more Lati teams than I lost to. And the same is true of Scizor or Gliscor (in fact I probably lost more games to Gliscor than any other single threat, but I still don't think Gliscor is busted). It means that Lati is one of the best 'mons in the tier, but it doesn't mean that it's broken.

Anyhow, I'm about to go vote, and vote do not ban on Latias-Mega. I assume most of you have already put in your votes, so I doubt it will change anything, but I did want to at least say that.



what matters is our plan!
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and i do hope people realize i’m not kidding about m gard. yes, it’s “better” than m lati, but it is way more predictable and therefore easier to build and play around. m lati on the other hand has a different set of checks for each set it can run AND doesn’t need to reveal its set until its poised to sweep. gard was the mon keeping lati in check, so once that went, lati got that nudge it needed.

ps. i am truly hard pressed to believe that m lati adds /that/ much more to the tier defensively than regular lati. sure it’s great to have a better fighting resist, but it’s that same defensive prowess that makes it fucking ridiculous to deal with it’s offensive capabilities.

to BRs credit, he actually had the forethought to vote no ban on gard but he was just outvoted.
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