Gen 6 np: XY Ubers Gengarite Suspect Test - In The Shadows [READ POST #71]

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If Mega Gengar is such a big threat, shouldn't you be constructing your team accordingly and not creating any major weaknesses to it, just as you would for any other threat like Kyogre, Xern, etc? Yes, Mega Gengar is arguably slightly different in that it can trap things, but for the most part, it's still only as good as what it can trap. If being able to trap and remove things is such a successful strategy, you should be doing it too, so then both you and your opponent will have to play with this in mind and therefore it will still come down to who uses their resources better and makes the better predictions (this game is naturally quite heavily luck based, so take that statement with a grain of salt). We've already established that centralization is not a criterion for banning something, so if you need to use Mega Gengar in order to have a better chance to win, isn't the case then "so be it"? It's like how >50% of teams use Xern and how the game frequently comes down to who finds the best opportunity to set up with it and sweep first.

The team-building aspect of it should also balance out; you can build around not being weak to Gengar and being slightly worse against other threats because of it, or you can you build your team to be better against other threats but weak to Gengar. Then, when it comes to your opponents choice in this regard, if you happen to come across a team who hasn't built their team around not being weak to mega gengar in hopes of being stronger against those that don't have it, you can simply remedy this issue by using one on your own team to punish that 'greedy' choice. If everyone does that, Mega Gengar will be centralizing, but not problematic, just as any other premier threat is.

Mega Gengar also has issues associated with it which aren't favorable to the user that prevent it from being some 'unstoppable force', such as having pretty awful bulk which restricts its switch-in opportunities, having to stay in for a turn first before it can actually trap things to begin with, and having a Pursuit weakness. These aren't exactly glaring issues, but they certainly make gengar manageable and tolerable.

So my current stance on the matter is that Mega Gengar is centralizing but not uncompetitive, and calling Gothitelle a problem in Ubers is, frankly, a joke. If we start banning more and more things like Shadow Tag in Ubers, we're gunna need a new tier above Ubers that has no clauses at all so that players who actually want to be able to play the game as close to the natural game as possible without all these recent cries of uncompetitive mumbo-jumbo, can do so.
Ubers was intially a banlist but has evolved because there is a growing playerbase. Now that it has become more popular it's considered a tier and like all other tiers the players want to create a competitive and mostly balanced metagame. If there's a Pokemon or ability that the players feel is broken or overpowered then they should have the right to call for a ban. Why not? I don't understand the "Nothing should ever be banned from Ubers" view or the "Natural way" as you described it. Using a Mega Gengar to check another Mega Gengar is not fun. If that's how you want to play then by all means play custom games. A majority of the people who play Ubers want a tier that's enjoyable and competitive at the same time.
 
*if a moderator would like, please feel free to put this in an aesthetic hide. I'm not going to myself because I worry not many people read the last post i did that to*
It was said many many times and I'll repeat it, I don't think that Ubers bans stuff based on brokenness but on being competitive or not (e.g: Swagger, OHKO moves etc...) as stuff that already got banned makes battles based on luck and coinflips, but Shadow Tag is slightly different as it relies on some thinking but still it stops switching which is one of the important basic stuff in Pokémon battles.
These are good points. And there are some logical questions you can follow them up with to grow your understanding of what's going on here. For instance you've pointed out that Shadow Tag is fundamentaly different form everything that has ever been called uncompetitive before (as in elements of the game that are random and out of player control) So the follow up question you should ask yourself is. Is stopping your opponent from doing one of the important basic stuff of Pokemon battles "uncompetitive" or is it a "broken" strategy? This comes down to how you define the word uncompetitive. And how you define the word is very important for how we as a community can identify elements of the game.
Do you think there is a difference between elements of the game that a player consciously chooses to use in a specific way, and execute through a method of their choosing to win a battle and elements of the game that a player chooses to use knowing that it will randomize the outcome possibly randomly putting them in a better position outside of their specific choices?
If you think there is a difference then you may want to look into the definitions of uncompetitive and broken Smogon has classically used and exert the minor amount of critical thought it takes to recognize that locking down your opponent's options is simply a strategy that is broken next to all other strategies rather than one that is uncompetitive. (specifically because your opponent has the option themselves to employee the exact same strategy on you and try to use it better than you, consciously, in a battle where the outcome will be determined strictly by both your conscious decisions to execute this strategy and not by random elements)

If you think that there isn't a difference, if you are a little more liberal with your use of the word "uncompetitive" then lets delve into that territory and ask ourselves the appropriate follow up questions from there. So as I see it, looking more carefully, there are 2 extended definitions of uncompetitive that people have been using to capture the game element Mega Gengar's ability employees:
1) it is uncompetitive to be put in a position where your options have been limited.
2) an individual strategy can be uncompetitive if there is no counter play to the strategy.
Reading the post here I've come to somewhat suspect that people who use the first wording are frequently just doing a less thorough job of articulating the second wording which is how they actually feel. But either way lets look at both possible extended definitions (or liberal definitions) of the word uncompetitive. We'll start with number 1.

You and I both have Pokemon on the field. I use Sand Tomb on yours. Now you can not switch that Pokemon out. Switching is the important basic stuff of Pokemon battles and I have now limited your options. Based on extend definition 1, how is what I've done NOT uncompetitive? It's the exact same reasoning through which Mega Gengar is uncomeptitive but it is now it's being employed by another part of the game. Either this element is uncompetitve or it isn't. Once you start picking and choosing which parts of the game employing the element are "too good for competition" then all you are really doing is picking and choosing the things that are broken. For instance Blazekin is banned from OU. Is this because Speed Boost is uncompetitive? No. The mechanic of free stat boosts at the end of the turn is a good strategy you can employ but it is not inherently "too good" in all places of the game.* Sharpedo can't boost it's own offenses and it can't baton pass the boosts it acquires. In other words, Blazekin is broken but the ability (free stat boosts) is not an uncompetitive element it is employing, else Sharpedo would be ruining competition the same way. So either all game elements that limit your opponent's switching options are "uncompetitive" OR the ones that are too good are "broken." So to answer the bolded above question, based on extended definition 1, the only way what I've done is not uncompetitive is if Mega Gengar is not uncompetitve but simply broken.

(* please keep in mind this sentence for later)

I don't get how you're comparing Shadow Tag to those moves, Shadow Tag isn't like Mean Look, Whirlpool, Magma Trap.. as the latters are moves not an ability so you should always waste a turn to activate it, and for Arena Trap any Flying-type and Levitate Pokémon can escape it, meanwhile only Ghost-types can escape Shadow Tag but there are only few viable ones.
I believe the "confusion" here comes from the fact that ogasian was speaking of the "uncompetitive" nature of trapping through liberal definition 1, while you are contemplating the "uncompetitive" nature of trapping through liberal definition 2. But before I delve into the difference of "counter plays" I want you to keep in mind that you tried to find a difference between Shadow Tag and Arena Trap. These two abilities employee EXACTLY the same mechanic with EXACTLY the same inability to counter-play, the only difference between them is that, as you said, one has a much large subset of monster immune to the tactic. If Shadow Tag is ban worthy but Arena Trap is not then this is NOT because the mechanic of "stopping the most basic important stuff of Pokemon battles" is uncompetitive. Instead it IS because Shadow tag employees this mechanic better and it broken next to other uses of the same mechanic. (broken... not uncompetitive)

Alright so lets get are hands dirty and look at the meaning and implications of liberal definition number 2. "an individual strategy can be uncompetitive if there is no counter play to the strategy." hmm, this honestly does sound like a somewhat more solid way to define "lack of competition" at least on the surface it does. We aren't just haphazardly labeling one specific player controlled mechanic as uncompetitive so we can ban it, anyways. However this is actually the much scarier definition to me because the implications are FAR worse. To explain why you're gonna have to bare with me though so sort of wonky examples. but I mean it, please read these because they build up to the issue.
Let's say I go on PS and build myself a team made up of Levanny, Parasect, Breloom, Heracross, Meinsaho, and Shedinja. I go i to a battle and my opponent leads with a Talonflame. I am in a Situation were I have No Counter Play, Does this mean what is going on is Uncompetitive? The very quick an obvious answer everyone could give is NO, you idiot! You clearly are just a dingus with no team building skill at all. The basic argument being that the concept of "counter playing" extends to my team building where I prepare myself with strategies than can actually be used to make the counter plays.
Well lets say this battle was happening in an arbitrary tier I'm making up right now that for some reason doesn't include Zapdos, Rotom-W, Mega Manectric or any of the things that actually counter play Talonfalme. Like they are all up in higher tiers. Now I'm left with no conuter plays to Talonflame. In this hypothetical Tier is Talonflame Uncompetitive? Or is it simply too Broken and Belong in a higher tier? I think you know the answer. And before you tell me I'm stupid and that the phrase "counter play" is specifically talking about your ability to switch into a good match up, let me first tell you that if that's your thought process please go back up this post and re-read the section where I break down liberal definition number 1 because that's the thought process and definition your using if that's all "counter play" means to you. And I'd also like to add one more hypothetical element to this make believe tier. Rotom-Wash is actually part of the tier but because it's so heavily populated with viable grass types, Rotom-Wash isn't viable itself in this tier..... As many people pointed out long before I even began posting here. there is a "counter play" to Shadow Tag. You make it at that same team building level when you decide to put Shed Shell on your Pokemon. The issue is that the counter play isn't viable within the rest of the metagame. So already we actually need an amendment to this definition if we want to actually capture Shadow Tag within it. it needs to be "an individual strategy can be uncompetitive if there is no viable counter plays to the strategy." Okay this is already starting to look worse because our hard definition of what is uncompetitive is now based on the soft definition of what is "viable." Not only that but what is and isn't viable is a variable element of the metagame. As different strategies rise and fall from popularity so do to the viability of their counter parts.

Okay, let's go look at real examples so that this isn't all based on my make believe bull-crap. This generation Mega Kangaskhan was banned form OU. Why? because there were no viable ways to handle it, no viable counter plays. You had to put Pokemon with low viability in your team in order to counter play a Mega Kangaskhan. Is Mega Kangaskhan regarded as "uncompetitive"? No, it was broken within OU but there are viable ways to deal with it in Ubers. So wait, by liberal definition number 2 Mega Kangaskhan can be situationally "uncompettivie." As in, Mega Kangaskhan is uncompettive but only within certain frame of reference metagames. In OU its uncompetitive but in Ubers it's competitive. Does this make sense? it shouldn't. What's going on here is we're talking about the phenomena of being "broken" but were using the wrong word. maybe this explanation will help it finally click for some people. By targeting specific player contorted strategies with the word "uncompetitive" you are overlapping the meaning of the words "uncompetitive" and "broken." This is the terrible implication of the new extended definition because now we have no way to discern between broken elements of the game we strategicly use and elements that are out of player control. Wee have overlapped the two definitions. Now something can be uncompetitive simply for being broken within a frame of reference. For throwing off the balance of that frame of reference. In Mega Kangaskhan's case that frame of reference is OU. In Mega Gengar's case the frame of reference is the entire competitive gen 6 game. So finally we can rephrase that Talonflame question. Is mega Gengar uncompetitive? Or is it simply too Broken to Belong in its own Frame of Reference (a.k.a. the Entire Competitive Game)? (Remember that sentence from before? Being "too good" for all other competition is not the defining feature of being uncompetitive, instead it's the feature of being broken)

if you think my examples were wonky and don't apply to Shadow Tag specifically then I probably lost you at some point in my flow of logic or you're probably thinking about this through liberal definition number 1. I'm sorry for not being able to articulate everything perfectly but I would like to point out two final big red flags you should have about these liberal definitions that have suddenly expanded to capture the mechanics Mega Gengar employees.

First is the issue I already raised. the fact that the mechanic of Mega Gengar that everyone latches on to as its defining "uncompetitive" feature is a game mechanic that has been around for more than a decade but that no one has called foul on before. The difference now is not that the mechanic is being employed in a new way that degrades competition but that the mechainc is being used by a Pokemon with better moves and stats. The monster using it is better but it's being used in exactly the same way. Trap and eliminate one member of the enemy team your team struggles with. Magnezone has been doing this for a long time now and now one called it uncompetitvie before. Now a Pokemon has come along that dose it WAY better. It is broken for sure but if it were uncompetitive for employing that mechanic you should have seen all other employers of the same mechanic banned long ago. Since we didn't this is STRONG evidence that we are dealing with one specific competitive element that is now broken in a certain instance but not all instances.

the second red flag applies specifically to liberal definition 2. "An individual strategy can be uncompetitive if there is no viable counter play to the strategy." (because remember you can counter play Shadow Tag just not with viable strategies i.e. Shed Shell) but also remember that viability is a variable as well. Generation 7 may give us new Abilities, Pokemon, or Items that heavily punish the use of currently popular items like Leftover, Choice items, or Life Orb. In that new metagame these items are all less viable because of that arbitrary new element(s) and so Shed Shell is now more Viable. So now there's a viable way to counter play Mega Gengar and Mega Genagr has shifted from being uncompetitive to being competitive. And in spite of this shift nothing has actual changed about Mega Gengar himself. Take that to a parallel. Mega Mawile is about to be banned from OU for being broken. There are no good viable ways to handle it (counter play it) in the current OU meta. But some arbitrary metagame shift brought about by ORAS could suddenly add a large pool of viable Mega Mawile counters to OU and Mawile will then cease to be broken. broken..... NOT unocmpetitive. on the contrary lets look at other elements of the game deemed uncomeptitive. OHKO, Evasion, Moody. There is no conceivable metagame shift that would make it so that these elements promote competition. Literally the only thing that could make them competitive is to somehow give players control over the rng aspects. In other words, THEY THEMSELVES have to change to be part of competition. They aren't too good because of the build of the metagame they are actual uncontrollable elements that are never part of a competitive game. The mere fact that Mega Gengar could shift in and out of being competitive while remaining the same should be an immediate flag that what we're talking about here is being broken and not being uncompetitive (oh, and again the fact that mega mawile has no "counter play" in its own frame of reference but that that idea can shift around as well, which is reffered ot as being "broken" in every thread that isn't about Mega Gengar)

So...... once again. I'm trying to call people out on the use of the word uncompetitive here. Either we are balancing Ubers as a tier or we are not banning Mega Gengar. The Idea that we are Removing an Uncomeptitive Element of the Game is a Facade. This is a Balancing Decision. I'm pro-ban. removing Mega Gengar will make Ubers much more enjoyable. but let's please get our facts straight so that future teiring decisions can be based in reason and or so that we don't have to remove a bunch of non-broken elements (Arena Trap) from the entire game and tiers below Ubers based on the faulty president of pretending we maintained ban-list integrity. If you truly believe that only uncomeptitive elements of the game should be removed form Ubers then there should be no doubt in your mind the Mega Gengar stays. And if you want him gone it's because Ubers is a tier to you and you want it balanced.
 
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9 Tales of Ninetales

I refer you to my earlier post, #379. I'll quote the important bit, but you're welcome to read the whole thing, it's not that long :P

personally, I think its a mix. Like Evasion (which was banned in previous gens), the uncompetitiveness combined with how effective the strategy was is enough to push it out of Ubers. Accuracy lowering moves are just as uncompetitive as Evasion moves, given that they are effectively the same...except that Accuracy lowering moves are much weaker because of game mechanics, making the uncompetitiveness of it trivial since they're so weak.

I feel Shadow Tag is a similar case. Given that Ghost is the rarest type in the game, and the others have a much, much, much larger pool of things they can't trap, the uncompetitiveness is tempered by how weak they are. Shadow Tag, is far from weak though.
Rather than it being just removing an uncompetitive element, or a balancing decision, it is both at the same time, imo. If something is uncompetitive, but also one of the weakest strategies around (IE, Sand Attack and the like), then if we were removing things for being purely uncompetitive, they would be removed as well. If something is broken, we wouldn't be removing it, because Ubers is the tier of broken things, after all. It's when something becomes both uncompetitive and broken that we have an issue. Or rather, when something is uncompetitive, and strong enough, or when something is broken, and uncompetitive enough, then it can still cause an issue that needs to be dealt with.

That's where I feel Mega Gengar (and Shadow Tag as a whole) fits in. It's certainly uncompetitive, but I'm not sure on whether it's flat out broken or just borderline broken, but either way, it definitely is strong enough to be an issue that is worth dealing with to remove the uncompetitiveness.
 
I'll quote the important bit, but you're welcome to read the whole thing, it's not that long :P
XD OMG I'm sorry, I wish I could figure out ways to get my points across and give interesting examples and do it in fewer words with shorter posts.

Rather than it being just removing an uncompetitive element, or a balancing decision, it is both at the same time, imo. If something is uncompetitive, but also one of the weakest strategies around (IE, Sand Attack and the like), then if we were removing things for being purely uncompetitive, they would be removed as well. If something is broken, we wouldn't be removing it, because Ubers is the tier of broken things, after all. It's when something becomes both uncompetitive and broken that we have an issue. Or rather, when something is uncompetitive, and strong enough, or when something is broken, and uncompetitive enough, then it can still cause an issue that needs to be dealt with.

That's where I feel Mega Gengar (and Shadow Tag as a whole) fits in. It's certainly uncompetitive, but I'm not sure on whether it's flat out broken or just borderline broken, but either way, it definitely is strong enough to be an issue that is worth dealing with to remove the uncompetitiveness.
Alright, good thoughts. I 100% agree with the first stuff you're saying. While being broken and being uncompetitive are separate qualities of an element or mechanic, they are not polar opposites or something. they can co-exist as qualities of the same object. Sand-attack and minimize are good examples of tactics that employ essentially the same uncompetitive mechanic but that have very different levels of brokeness. I totally agree with all that. You've bluntly stated
It's certainly uncompetitive, but I'm not sure on whether it's flat out broken or just borderline broken, but either way, it definitely is strong enough to be an issue that is worth dealing with to remove the uncompetitiveness.
I'm not going to get into whther or not it's broken. If you think it isn't and that the balance of ubers is fine with it then maybe you should make the case against a ban. the part that is still concerning me it that you say it is certainly uncompetitive. So I would like to ask you: How do you define uncompetitive? And how does Mega Gengar fall under that definition? please put a lot of thought and detail into your answer this is the part of the suspect test that is really interesting to me.


You can't justify banning anything for the preservation of competition, balance in the metagame, or even fun so long as Evasion is legal.
lol, idk about you but I am 100% for the Evaison clause. At any rate if you actually feel that way then I think you're discrediting the only reasons to actually ban Mega-Gengar...
 
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Beta.

Ruff Ruff amirite?
So I am here because I feel I should voice my opinion on this test. I'm unsure if this has been said before.

Going into this suspect test, I had the impression that Mega Gengar shouldn't be removed from ubers. I was thinking, they're going to get rid of a Mon. Like just remove it from all tiers. I didn't think that was right. and so I entered the suspect ladder with the intention of trying to get it unbanned. That's when I actually played against it.

I fought it, and it occured to me how many things are un-viable just because this mon exists. Blissey and chansey once trapped by gengar are nullified in any way. Scratch that, practically any support is destroyed by this. It has base 130 speed, which means that it can outspeed every ubers mon, except for priority, dexys (except defense) and The mewtwonites. even then, most sets that Gengar runs can destroy these mons.

For Deoxys, if it's not sashed, it's dead. Instantly. 170 base Special attack? The only mons that can compare to it in special defense are deoxys and aegislash. We just established Deoxys, and aegislash is too slow, a shadow ball will, not might, will either destroy it, or cripple it harshly. There are few ways around MeGengar. Scizor is one way, yet even then, same thing as always. Your closest bet would be Bullet punch, yet that would only hurt it. It would do a lot, yet scizor would die. Any other physical attackers can die t it's will-o-wisp set. So not many things are safe.

The other thing that makes it too good is it's Shadow Tag. It can literally come in on what it wants, kill that, and then retreat. The only way to escape is with baton pass or u-turn. Even then, perish song is passed by baton pass, so good luck with that. The u-turn is the safest way out. So you have to outspeed it, or outlive a hit.

Gengar thrives with support. Yet not a lot. Minimal support is needed. The only thing that Mega Gengar lacks, is the ability to live a hit, yet with the ease of not worrying when that threat can come in, you are fine. So to beat MeGengar. You will need: A scarf on every team. To never bring in support, for gengar can just come in and kill, and lastly: worry every turn that MeGengar will come in on your mon.
 

SlottedPig

sem feio
is a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
It's easy to see Ubers as just a banlist, an environment where everything can be set loose. I see this as lazy argument and an appeal to tradition. Ubers is a metagame that's played in tourneys, and while its metagame is bizarre and overcentralized around a handful of Pokemon, it's fun and (mostly) competitive and has had various clauses in order to balance the "ban-list": Species Clause and Swagger Clause are the two obvious examples.

While Gengar isn't uncompetitive in the sense that it doesn't singlehandedly turn the game into a coin flip like Swagger or Evasion Pass, it is the single most team-matchup defining Pokemon of this generation. While it doesn't impact all team archetypes evenly, its ability to systematically eliminate defensive cores on its own (barring Pursuit, which is shaky at best) makes it imo fairly imbalanced. Putting Mega Gengar on your team is basically hoping to eliminate a certain core or Pokemon's checks and counters but instantly winning you the game whenever you get matched up against a particularly vulnerable defensive core -- a core which may as well be fine were it not for the presence of Mega Gengar. If Smogon's aim is to balance this game, then Mega Gengar is a good place to start.

I don't particularly feel the same way about Gothitelle (it traps immediately, but it's not as fast, and it's not as strong, and its typing is bad) but I am not opposed to a Shadow Tag test on the whole on the chance that it might change my mind (or cement that Gothitelle shouldn't be banned, which apparently players far better than myself can argue against).

Also, everything bad that can be sad about Mega Gengar can also be said about Evasion Pass.
 
iIm not going to get into whther or not it's broken. If you think it isn't and that the balance of ubers is fine with it then maybe you should make the case against a ban. the part that is still concerning me it that you say it is certainly uncompetitive. So I would like to ask you: How do you define uncompetitive? And how does Mega Gengar fall under that definition? please put a lot of thought and detail into your answer this is the part of the suspect test that is really interesting to me
Sorry I didn't make it clear enough in that post, I stated in multiple earlier posts that I am firmly pro-ban. What I meant by that last part is I'm not sure just how broken Gengarite and Shadow Tag are, but I am sure that its uncompetitive and too close to broken (if it isnt actually broken) to stay.

As for my definition of uncompetitiveness, your more liberal "second" definition is pretty much the definition I would use. The caveat though, is that I don't think that uncompetitiveness is enough grounds for a banning, especially in Ubers. Certainly we should trim uncompetitiveness where it becomes an issue, but its unrealistic to try and remove all uncompetitiveness. Realistically we should only remove broken elements (in the case of OU or lower) or uncompetitive elements that approach brokenness (in the case of Ubers and lower). I don't think there's any doubt that Mega Gengar is very good at what it does. Combine that power with the uncompetitive nature and power of Shadow Tag on its own and I think its pretty easy to see why I am pro-ban.

Just as an interesting point, in your post you brought up a situation where in the future Shadow Tag might not be as strong because of Shed Shell becoming more viable. Then you go on to say that Evasion is different. I don't see it as different. If Gamefreak were to introduce widely spread 90 power never miss moves (like old Aura Sphere) across a variety of good types, Evasion wouldn't really be a problem anymore, would it? Similar to how if Shed Shell was made more viable for outside reasons (leftovers and life orb becoming less viable), Shadow Tag would be less of a problem. Just some food for thought.
 
Sorry I didn't make it clear enough in that post, I stated in multiple earlier posts that I am firmly pro-ban. What I meant by that last part is I'm not sure just how broken Gengarite and Shadow Tag are, but I am sure that its uncompetitive and too close to broken (if it isnt actually broken) to stay.

As for my definition of uncompetitiveness, your more liberal "second" definition is pretty much the definition I would use. The caveat though, is that I don't think that uncompetitiveness is enough grounds for a banning, especially in Ubers. Certainly we should trim uncompetitiveness where it becomes an issue, but its unrealistic to try and remove all uncompetitiveness. Realistically we should only remove broken elements (in the case of OU or lower) or uncompetitive elements that approach brokenness (in the case of Ubers and lower). I don't think there's any doubt that Mega Gengar is very good at what it does. Combine that power with the uncompetitive nature and power of Shadow Tag on its own and I think its pretty easy to see why I am pro-ban.

Just as an interesting point, in your post you brought up a situation where in the future Shadow Tag might not be as strong because of Shed Shell becoming more viable. Then you go on to say that Evasion is different. I don't see it as different. If Gamefreak were to introduce widely spread 90 power never miss moves (like old Aura Sphere) across a variety of good types, Evasion wouldn't really be a problem anymore, would it? Similar to how if Shed Shell was made more viable for outside reasons (leftovers and life orb becoming less viable), Shadow Tag would be less of a problem. Just some food for thought.
Ah, sorry, I wasn't actually trying to announce your stance for you, more like... well.... idk.
But anyway I'm pro-ban too although my thoughts on the labels here are distinctly opposite. I would say it's clearly broken but not noncompetitive. (lol like you didn't know that :p)

I really appreciate your reply. I think it states one very important idea that I may have been a little misguided on. The concept that we inherently have to purge everything from the game that is uncompetitive to keep the game competitive. I think a really solid actual example of this is confuse ray. Which seriously is dumb for the exact same reasons as Swagger but it's not nearly as abuse-able, effective, or distributed and as a result we don't see rayplay teams (lol, Illumise can still hold her own with the big dogs though, she's just gotta be a little uncompetitive to do it) even though Confuse Ray is uncompetitive there's no real need to purge it from the game for now. And I guess under that "caveat" one could get away with extended definition number 1 without real negative consequence in the world of tiering. As it wouldn't really mean every other trapping strategy is necessarily an "issue" even if it is "uncompetitive".... Albeit, to me this still comes of like we're reassigning definitions so that we can pretend we're maintaining ban-list integrity.

I still strongly disagree with the definition you are using though (No.2). I really think it ultimately means the exact same thing as "broken" which is just kind of confusing and not a good way to break down game elements. (it's actually extra confusing because you question if mega gengar is broken but then call it uncompetitive under a definition that also means its broken, at least to me) I think that the existance of a"singular best" strategy is a sign of brokeness and not a demotion of competition. Competitive battles are ones where the higher skill player wins consistently. I think this is still the outcome of battles where two players both use Mega Gengar's trapping strategy. I also think that if one player isn't using "the singular best" strategy then that implies they have less skill at making strategies and thus should be less likely to win competitively. One strategy standing above the others is certainly broken but until it hands out wins randomly and the better players are not consistently winning I do not see it demoting the competition of the game.

As for your food for though, haha, I'd be lying if I said I had thought about a scenario like that before posting my text wall. It's a very good counter point though, I do think I actually captured the idea you posed indirectly when I said
Literally the only thing that could make them competitive is to somehow give players control over the rng aspects.
I guess I would argue that use of never-miss moves is the same as players having control over the rng. locking it into the result they always want. it basically is the addition of a game element that restores player control to an element where players had no control. And in that sense there are ways Moody or something could be returned into the fold of legal strategies without changing itself. So I will concede to being wrong when I said that. I do however still think there is a fundamental difference between why these randomized elements and trapping are obnoxious to deal with. And that the difference can be drawn using the conservative definition of uncompetitive. Perhaps the community will be adopting these newer definitions though and I will need to try to keep up. In the end these concept will still be definable it just might take more words to refer to them.

At any rate I really appreciate your feed back. It got me to do a lot of good thinking (and you did it with so few words compared to me XD) This test will be over soon so I'll try to refrain form writing any more novels. lol
 
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First is the issue I already raised. the fact that the mechanic of Mega Gengar that everyone latches on to as its defining "uncompetitive" feature is a game mechanic that has been around for more than a decade but that no one has called foul on before.
If something is uncompetitive people actually need to be able to win games with it. Like swagger coin flips can make the difference between a win and a loss very easily. But something like sand attack, it might be luck based and have no legit uses outside of haxing people, but it's not gonna screw somebody out of their win because overall it sucks. So basically, sand attack might be luck based, but it doesn't really matter if the rng isn't on your side, it's still easy to play around it and win.

That's why M-Gengar might be uncompetitive despite we never complained about other trapping stuff earlier. Mega Gengar can actually make enough use of its allegedly uncompetitive element to decide games.

I mean I don't think Mega Gengar is actually uncompetitive because of the rest of your points but I thought I could explain that one.
 
9 Tales of Ninetales

Sorry, I was unclear again. I meant the more liberal definition in your "hidden" post. Though, upon reading it again, maybe j was mistaken in saying that's my definition.

For me, uncompetitivness arises if certain conditions are met.
A) Excessive RNG
B) Easily abusable
C) "Breaking" the rules (removal of a game mechanic, or completely ignoring a mechanic. Think like OHKO moves and trapping abilities)

Note that if only one of these conditions are present I don't believe the element is uncompetitive. OHKO moves fall under A and C (if, for example, OHKO moves had 80-100 accuracy but only affected pokemon that are 4x weak to the move's type, I feel like that wouldn't be uncompetitive as there is no longer an excessive RNG element). Evasion falls under A and B. Shadow Tag, I feel, falls under B and C. Arena Tag, and Magnet Pull, only fall under C. The vast amount of immunities to those abilities makes it so they aren't easily abusable, and there's no RNG involved in the ability.

Now as for uncompetitive vs broken, broken elements usually fall under B, but rarely do they ever fall under A or C. Most "broken" things are simply too good at what they do. In other words, easily abusable, but rarely relying on RNG and rarely "breaking" a game rule. You could make the argument that Mega Mawile in OU was "breaking" the rule that wallbreakers cannot be sweepers because it had insane power and a way to circumvent its speed, but as "sweepers" and "wallbreakers" are not actual game rules but rather roles we invented and assigned pokemon, I feel that argument doesn't hold water.

Shadow Tag, by breaking the rule of "players are allowed to switch pokemon" combined with how easily abusable it is (Ghost being the rarest type in the game, Shed Shell being useless against anything else, and Baton Pass/U-turn/Volt Switch having low distribution) fufills at least 2 of the 3 conditions needed for me to find something uncompetitive.

To me, uncompetitiveness and brokenness are linked but not equal. Not two sides to the same coin, so to speak. One does not cause the other, but one being present usually requires further inspection to see if the other is present too.

As I'm doing these posts over mobile while at work I'm not sure if I'm exactly conveying myself properly and clearly, but I think I at least get the idea across.
 
9 Tales of Ninetales

Sorry, I was unclear again. I meant the more liberal definition in your "hidden" post. Though, upon reading it again, maybe j was mistaken in saying that's my definition.

For me, uncompetitivness arises if certain conditions are met.
A) Excessive RNG
B) Easily abusable
C) "Breaking" the rules (removal of a game mechanic, or completely ignoring a mechanic. Think like OHKO moves and trapping abilities)

Note that if only one of these conditions are present I don't believe the element is uncompetitive. OHKO moves fall under A and C (if, for example, OHKO moves had 80-100 accuracy but only affected pokemon that are 4x weak to the move's type, I feel like that wouldn't be uncompetitive as there is no longer an excessive RNG element). Evasion falls under A and B. Shadow Tag, I feel, falls under B and C. Arena Tag, and Magnet Pull, only fall under C. The vast amount of immunities to those abilities makes it so they aren't easily abusable, and there's no RNG involved in the ability.

Now as for uncompetitive vs broken, broken elements usually fall under B, but rarely do they ever fall under A or C. Most "broken" things are simply too good at what they do. In other words, easily abusable, but rarely relying on RNG and rarely "breaking" a game rule. You could make the argument that Mega Mawile in OU was "breaking" the rule that wallbreakers cannot be sweepers because it had insane power and a way to circumvent its speed, but as "sweepers" and "wallbreakers" are not actual game rules but rather roles we invented and assigned pokemon, I feel that argument doesn't hold water.

Shadow Tag, by breaking the rule of "players are allowed to switch pokemon" combined with how easily abusable it is (Ghost being the rarest type in the game, Shed Shell being useless against anything else, and Baton Pass/U-turn/Volt Switch having low distribution) fufills at least 2 of the 3 conditions needed for me to find something uncompetitive.

To me, uncompetitiveness and brokenness are linked but not equal. Not two sides to the same coin, so to speak. One does not cause the other, but one being present usually requires further inspection to see if the other is present too.

As I'm doing these posts over mobile while at work I'm not sure if I'm exactly conveying myself properly and clearly, but I think I at least get the idea across.
No man, you're doing a real good job and I actually think what your saying makes a ton of sense. Like I don't really feel the need to try to argue. I think what you're saying is correct and it's actually a really solid alternative way of breaking down the elemnts and examining them. In fact it may even be a better way. I think the concept of C is one I never strictly thought about in terms of bans, but I'll come back to it. and I think that A is the main offender or feature of uncompetitive elements as I've been trying to define them. However I believe that elements of the game that promote "guessing games" or "50/50"s between players are also elements that can labeled as uncomeptitive in that same way. So it's not strictly just the game generating random numbers. To be honest my main concern was simply the fact that I felt like people were throwing the word "uncompetitive" around haphazardly without putting critical thought into what it meant. But you're dong a real good job of showing me that we can still break down and discuss the components of this game in spite of that. And sorry for continously assuming stuff wrong about what you're saying.

Also thanks for the additional input Zebstrika I think that goes hand in hand with the idea that not all "uncomeptitve" elements (or even not all instances of an element) are necessarily worth purging from the game. Only that this takes it one step further and says: Confuse Ray isn't even uncompetitive becasue you can't abuse the random element, or something. Of course that isn't the kind of thing you can clear cut define and spell out, but neither is viability, the effectiveness of something specific, or even the level to which things are broken. So it's just another level of discussion going into what can and can't be labeled as uncompetitive.

Oh and I'll circle back to C now that I thought about it a little. "breaking" the rules. I guess my thoughts on this are like.... every game has "rules" but what's interesintg in this situation is that we the community of smogon are essentially writing our own rules for a game that was already given to us with a set of rules. (i.e. bans, and tiers and junk are the rules we write) I think you could philosophocally argue that Shadow Tag doesn't break the rules becasue it itself is a rule given to us by Game Freak but that's dumb to do here becasue of the fact we build our own rules as well. After all so were the rules that apply to putting Pokemon to sleep. I guess what I'm getting at is the "rules" of the game are something that we would again have to discuss as a community. On this thread you can already see many many people arguing that switching is the most fundamental mechainc of Pokemon battling and the thing that makes it interesting (I kind of rememebr saying that myself in one of my really ealry posts too) and so I think you can gather quickly that to the community this is a "rule" that people don't want tampered with even by the "rules" given to us by Nintnedo. From the perspective of the rules we write and want for our game, Shadow Tag does break the rules. Personally I actually still don't know that that phenoman links to the level of competition in battles directly. But yeah, I think you defining it in a realistic and careful way. A, B and C could all be elements that frame into the reasons we ban a game element or instance of an element.
 
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Focus

Ubers Tester Extraordinaire
Now that the time to vote is creeping up on us and this thread has some semblance of meaningful conversation, it's about time to share some of my thoughts.

Gengarite is certainly a thorn in the side of the Ubers metagame currently, but I have not gotten the feeling from laddering that Mega Gengar is so stupidly overpowered or overall detrimental to competitive play to warrant a ban from Ubers. Ubers is the land of uncounterable threats and restrictive teambuilding already. No Pokémon, item, ability has been made unavailable via clause for reasons of centralization alone. The threshold of a ban from Ubers is by necessity much higher than that of OU to maintain the concept of Ubers as the metagame with the least possible bans or to a reasonable extent, the metagame/tier where you are free to use pretty much anything you want. Exceptions obviously exist, but I'm speaking in broad strokes here (even I don't think stuff like Moody has a place in a serious metagame). This is the biggest reason that this suspect test caught many non Uber players off guard.

As for Mega Gengar, it is a major challenge to play against because one wrong prediction or instance of bad luck usually means a fainted Pokémon that was crucial to your win condition. Many have argued that Gengar triggers an unacceptable level of 50/50s, and that's fine, that's a valid opinion. However through my laddering this month, I have found Mega Gengar to be a nuisance, but no more so than Xerneas, Mewtwo, or Arceus. Others may not agree, but Mega Gengar just simply not worth banning imho. Ubers is in a period when it is no longer reasonable to fully prepare for all of the major threats, and I don't know how this can be adequately fixed without a push to ban even more things down the road. I'm not a fan of slippery slope arguments, but you must realize that the banning of Gengarite would mark a dramatic change in the mindset of the Ubers community. The over-emphasis of team match-up that is attributed to Shadow Tag is a symptom that Ubers has many threats that can cut through teams like butter, and that the metagame is centered around relatively few Pokémon. This problem will not go away any time soon, and I embrace Ubers as a fundamentally different type of metagame than OU, UU, or the lower tiers.

It might be premature to talk about Shadow Tag in general (there will be plenty of time to do that in the next test), but since Mega Gengar only has that as its ability, it is worth addressing. Shadow Tag itself is not overpowered, broken, uncompetitive, or whatever-buzzword-you-can-think-of. The Pokémon that get Shadow Tag are the problem. It can certainly push a crappy Pokémon over the edge into threatening territory, but each dangerous trapper has just the tools it needs to make its ability work. Mega Gengar is not a threat because of its ability; it is a threat because of its ability+typing+stats+movepool. Just as switching is part of the game of Pokémon, so is diminishing the opponent's options. Taunt, Encore, Trick (Choice items), Disable, Shadow Tag, Arena Trap, Magnet Pull, Mean Look, Infestation, and many other things do just that. Shadow Tag is the most prominent of all of these at the moment, but I find the idea that switching being a mechanic of the game that should necessarily be preserved to be illogical. I tentatively have trouble finding merit to ban Shadow Tag.
 
Now that the time to vote is creeping up on us and this thread has some semblance of meaningful conversation, it's about time to share some of my thoughts.

Gengarite is certainly a thorn in the side of the Ubers metagame currently, but I have not gotten the feeling from laddering that Mega Gengar is so stupidly overpowered or overall detrimental to competitive play to warrant a ban from Ubers. Ubers is the land of uncounterable threats and restrictive teambuilding already. No Pokémon, item, ability has been made unavailable via clause for reasons of centralization alone. The threshold of a ban from Ubers is by necessity much higher than that of OU to maintain the concept of Ubers as the metagame with the least possible bans or to a reasonable extent, the metagame/tier where you are free to use pretty much anything you want. Exceptions obviously exist, but I'm speaking in broad strokes here (even I don't think stuff like Moody has a place in a serious metagame). This is the biggest reason that this suspect test caught many non Uber players off guard.

As for Mega Gengar, it is a major challenge to play against because one wrong prediction or instance of bad luck usually means a fainted Pokémon that was crucial to your win condition. Many have argued that Gengar triggers an unacceptable level of 50/50s, and that's fine, that's a valid opinion. However through my laddering this month, I have found Mega Gengar to be a nuisance, but no more so than Xerneas, Mewtwo, or Arceus. Others may not agree, but Mega Gengar just simply not worth banning imho. Ubers is in a period when it is no longer reasonable to fully prepare for all of the major threats, and I don't know how this can be adequately fixed without a push to ban even more things down the road. I'm not a fan of slippery slope arguments, but you must realize that the banning of Gengarite would mark a dramatic change in the mindset of the Ubers community. The over-emphasis of team match-up that is attributed to Shadow Tag is a symptom that Ubers has many threats that can cut through teams like butter, and that the metagame is centered around relatively few Pokémon. This problem will not go away any time soon, and I embrace Ubers as a fundamentally different type of metagame than OU, UU, or the lower tiers.

It might be premature to talk about Shadow Tag in general (there will be plenty of time to do that in the next test), but since Mega Gengar only has that as its ability, it is worth addressing. Shadow Tag itself is not overpowered, broken, uncompetitive, or whatever-buzzword-you-can-think-of. The Pokémon that get Shadow Tag are the problem. It can certainly push a crappy Pokémon over the edge into threatening territory, but each dangerous trapper has just the tools it needs to make its ability work. Mega Gengar is not a threat because of its ability; it is a threat because of its ability+typing+stats+movepool. Just as switching is part of the game of Pokémon, so is diminishing the opponent's options. Taunt, Encore, Trick (Choice items), Disable, Shadow Tag, Arena Trap, Magnet Pull, Mean Look, Infestation, and many other things do just that. Shadow Tag is the most prominent of all of these at the moment, but I find the idea that switching being a mechanic of the game that should necessarily be preserved to be illogical. I tentatively have trouble finding merit to ban Shadow Tag.
Thank you for your input...but it doesn't really further the dicusssion of the past page and a half. You don't address the uncompetitive aspect of the ban at all, you focus entirely on the broken aspect and really don't add anything besides anecdotes, which as we should all know by now, mean little to nothing.

In fact, the post screams of an OU banning mentality being applied to Ubers, given the mentions to 50/50, team matchups, and centralization, all buzz words that haven't been part of the conversation here for a while now, yet have been insanely prevelant in the most recent OU suspects.

We're well aware that Ubers is full of broken and centralizing threats and that those aren't grounds for a banning. Uncompetitiveness, however, can be, and especially when coupled with being broken. That's the difference between Mega Gengar and say, Geomancy Xerneas. GeoXern is broken, but not uncompetitive under pretty much every definition brought up in the thread, while Mega Gengar falls under the uncompetitive catagory for quite a few different definitions.

So rather than a post of anecdotal evidence and a focus on broken not being enough to ban something, I'd like to ask you for your opinion on whether or not Mega Gengar is uncompetitive, why or why not, what your definition of uncompetitive would be, and if Mega Gengar's level of broken, when combined with its level of uncompetitiveness, would warrant a ban.
 
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It might be premature to talk about Shadow Tag in general (there will be plenty of time to do that in the next test), but since Mega Gengar only has that as its ability, it is worth addressing. Shadow Tag itself is not overpowered, broken, uncompetitive, or whatever-buzzword-you-can-think-of. The Pokémon that get Shadow Tag are the problem. It can certainly push a crappy Pokémon over the edge into threatening territory, but each dangerous trapper has just the tools it needs to make its ability work. Mega Gengar is not a threat because of its ability; it is a threat because of its ability+typing+stats+movepool. Just as switching is part of the game of Pokémon, so is diminishing the opponent's options. Taunt, Encore, Trick (Choice items), Disable, Shadow Tag, Arena Trap, Magnet Pull, Mean Look, Infestation, and many other things do just that. Shadow Tag is the most prominent of all of these at the moment, but I find the idea that switching being a mechanic of the game that should necessarily be preserved to be illogical. I tentatively have trouble finding merit to ban Shadow Tag.
This is the best part of your post, and also the most important part. It horrifies me that people are comparing Shadow Tag to evasion and confusion, and pushing for a ban just because of it.

I don't necessarily agree with the rest though. Imo, MegaGengar is terrifying in a completely different way to the other threats. Xerneas, Kyogre and Arceus do not present the same sort of threat to teams, and namely teams which are less conventional or rely on a certain core or key pokemon. If anything is too good for ubers, it's Gengarite.

I still think that if a ban is to be made, then as users we should have the balls to accept that we're banning it because it's too good for Ubers, so much so that it actually ruins the game. The "uncompetitive" arguments are illogical and comparing shadow tag to evasion is fallacious.
Despite this, I honestly feel like it should be banned from singles. If Ubers is to be a metagame and not just a banlist, then it's probably better to ban it, as it would improve the tier.
For me, uncompetitivness arises if certain conditions are met.
A) Excessive RNG
B) Easily abusable
C) "Breaking" the rules (removal of a game mechanic, or completely ignoring a mechanic. Think like OHKO moves and trapping abilities)
So, shadow tag meets B&C and this is why it should be banned? But a combination of your B&C criteria is very common in all levels of play. Sleep-status moves, substitute, pursuit, priority moves, (etc....) all meet both B&C. I also think C is poorly defined and B is just something that can be attributed to almost anything that is used in ubers...
Mega Gengar falls under the uncompetitive catagory for quite a few different definitions.
I still await a post which logically argues why mega gengar is uncompetitive.
 
So, shadow tag meets B&C and this is why it should be banned? But a combination of your B&C criteria is very common in all levels of play. Sleep-status moves, substitute, pursuit, priority moves, (etc....) all meet both B&C. I also think C is poorly defined and B is just something that can be attributed to almost anything that is used in ubers...
Sleep clause exists even in Ubers, I don't think you want to bring up sleep. As for the rest, they don't break a fundamental game mechanic, they don't stop the mechanic from working entirely, they just alter it or bend it, as it were. Pursuit doesn't prevent a switch, just changes priority, priority moves don't cause speed to just not exist (as even when using priority moves speed is applied normally, just that greater emphasis is placed on the priority bracket, which is a game rule as well).

And yes, B is applicable to pretty much everything in Ubers...but B alone isn't enough for something to be uncompetitive. B is just a sign something might be broken, and being broken is a hallmark of Ubers and not grounds for banning.

As for C being poorly defined, breaking the rules is the simplest definition, but I purposefully put the elaboration of removal or ignoring a game mechanic to better define it.
 

Karxrida

Corruption of Shadows
is a Community Contributor Alumnus
Now that the time to vote is creeping up on us and this thread has some semblance of meaningful conversation, it's about time to share some of my thoughts.

Gengarite is certainly a thorn in the side of the Ubers metagame currently, but I have not gotten the feeling from laddering that Mega Gengar is so stupidly overpowered or overall detrimental to competitive play to warrant a ban from Ubers. Ubers is the land of uncounterable threats and restrictive teambuilding already. No Pokémon, item, ability has been made unavailable via clause for reasons of centralization alone. The threshold of a ban from Ubers is by necessity much higher than that of OU to maintain the concept of Ubers as the metagame with the least possible bans or to a reasonable extent, the metagame/tier where you are free to use pretty much anything you want. Exceptions obviously exist, but I'm speaking in broad strokes here (even I don't think stuff like Moody has a place in a serious metagame). This is the biggest reason that this suspect test caught many non Uber players off guard.

As for Mega Gengar, it is a major challenge to play against because one wrong prediction or instance of bad luck usually means a fainted Pokémon that was crucial to your win condition. Many have argued that Gengar triggers an unacceptable level of 50/50s, and that's fine, that's a valid opinion. However through my laddering this month, I have found Mega Gengar to be a nuisance, but no more so than Xerneas, Mewtwo, or Arceus. Others may not agree, but Mega Gengar just simply not worth banning imho. Ubers is in a period when it is no longer reasonable to fully prepare for all of the major threats, and I don't know how this can be adequately fixed without a push to ban even more things down the road. I'm not a fan of slippery slope arguments, but you must realize that the banning of Gengarite would mark a dramatic change in the mindset of the Ubers community. The over-emphasis of team match-up that is attributed to Shadow Tag is a symptom that Ubers has many threats that can cut through teams like butter, and that the metagame is centered around relatively few Pokémon. This problem will not go away any time soon, and I embrace Ubers as a fundamentally different type of metagame than OU, UU, or the lower tiers.

It might be premature to talk about Shadow Tag in general (there will be plenty of time to do that in the next test), but since Mega Gengar only has that as its ability, it is worth addressing. Shadow Tag itself is not overpowered, broken, uncompetitive, or whatever-buzzword-you-can-think-of. The Pokémon that get Shadow Tag are the problem. It can certainly push a crappy Pokémon over the edge into threatening territory, but each dangerous trapper has just the tools it needs to make its ability work. Mega Gengar is not a threat because of its ability; it is a threat because of its ability+typing+stats+movepool. Just as switching is part of the game of Pokémon, so is diminishing the opponent's options. Taunt, Encore, Trick (Choice items), Disable, Shadow Tag, Arena Trap, Magnet Pull, Mean Look, Infestation, and many other things do just that. Shadow Tag is the most prominent of all of these at the moment, but I find the idea that switching being a mechanic of the game that should necessarily be preserved to be illogical. I tentatively have trouble finding merit to ban Shadow Tag.
It's actually not a slippery slope because banning Mega Gengar means you jumped right off it. Banning a Pokemon in Ubers is unprecedented and goes against the purpose of the tier, which is to let you use every Pokemon regardless of how broken it is. Banning would Mega Gengar set a new precedent and is a very legitimate concern, as it means there's nothing stopping people for asking for anything else to be banned since it's now allowed.
 

Inspirited

Formerly WreckDra
is a Contributor Alumnus
It's actually not a slippery slope because banning Mega Gengar means you jumped right off it. Banning a Pokemon in Ubers is unprecedented and goes against the purpose of the tier, which is to let you use every Pokemon regardless of how broken it is. Banning would Mega Gengar set a new precedent and is a very legitimate concern, as it means there's nothing stopping people for asking for anything else to be banned since it's now allowed.
I don't know what dark corner of the forums Melee Mewtwo found this in, but here it is:

It shows that we were prepared to ban mons if need be, but only if they are deemed uncompetitive and are actively impacting the meta in a negative way. This picture should be enough to keep that argument a slippery slope.
 
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Focus

Ubers Tester Extraordinaire
Thank you for your input...but it doesn't really further the dicusssion of the past page and a half. You don't address the uncompetitive aspect of the ban at all, you focus entirely on the broken aspect and really don't add anything besides anecdotes, which as we should all know by now, mean little to nothing.

In fact, the post screams of an OU banning mentality being applied to Ubers, given the mentions to 50/50, team matchups, and centralization, all buzz words that haven't been part of the conversation here for a while now, yet have been insanely prevelant in the most recent OU suspects.

We're well aware that Ubers is full of broken and centralizing threats and that those aren't grounds for a banning. Uncompetitiveness, however, can be, and especially when coupled with being broken. That's the difference between Mega Gengar and say, Geomancy Xerneas. GeoXern is broken, but not uncompetitive under pretty much every definition brought up in the thread, while Mega Gengar falls under the uncompetitive catagory for quite a few different definitions.

So rather than a post of anecdotal evidence and a focus on broken not being enough to ban something, I'd like to ask you for your opinion on whether or not Mega Gengar is uncompetitive, why or why not, what your definition of uncompetitive would be, and if Mega Gengar's level of broken, when combined with its level of uncompetitiveness, would warrant a ban.
I deliberately avoided using the words "uncompetitive" and "broken" because I really don't want to participate in an argument of semantics. I wasn't really addressing the discussions in the past few pages in particular; it was more in response to some arguments made over the past few weeks. There are quite a few posts in this thread that used OU-esque logic, but I am guessing close to none of those such posters follow this thread much anymore anyways.

I don't see uncompetitiveness as a black and white classification. Some aspects of the game are more competitive than others. My point was that I don't believe Mega Gengar to be uncompetitive enough to warrant a ban, and I'll be the first to admit that I'm biased toward not banning things from Ubers. The metagame is playable and interesting enough as it is, and even if that isn't good enough for you, it is good enough for me. For your criteria of uncompetitiveness of Gengarite, there is zero RNG involved with Shadow Tag, is fairly easily abusable (certainly to the point where the top 20 or 30 players could use Gengar more or less flawlessly), and sure it may break a crucial aspect of the game (switching) sometimes. However, switching is undeniably an important mechanic of the game, but so is limiting your opponent's options. So by your system, I would say that Mega Gengar is ~1.5/3 uncompetitive if you are looking for a number or something. For comparison, OHKO moves fall somewhere between 2/3 and 3/3 on your scale, and I stand by my previous vote to not retain the OHKO Clause.

Hopefully that answers your questions somewhat.
 
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Sleep clause exists even in Ubers, I don't think you want to bring up sleep. As for the rest, they don't break a fundamental game mechanic, they don't stop the mechanic from working entirely, they just alter it or bend it, as it were. Pursuit doesn't prevent a switch, just changes priority, priority moves don't cause speed to just not exist (as even when using priority moves speed is applied normally, just that greater emphasis is placed on the priority bracket, which is a game rule as well).

And yes, B is applicable to pretty much everything in Ubers...but B alone isn't enough for something to be uncompetitive. B is just a sign something might be broken, and being broken is a hallmark of Ubers and not grounds for banning.

As for C being poorly defined, breaking the rules is the simplest definition, but I purposefully put the elaboration of removal or ignoring a game mechanic to better define it.
You are on thin ground trying to argue this point. No legitimate move or ability ever breaks a game mechanic. I'll run with ignore/remove for arguments sake here.
Priority completely ignores the speed stat, which is a mechanic. Pursuit ignores the priority given to switching out. Taunt removes the action certain moves. You can't have your cake and eat it here. Either nothing "breaks" a game mechanic, or my examples are valid as they ignore or remove one.
I suspect you're going to argue this further, but I really am not interested in getting into a semantics debate over what ignore/remove is defined as in this situation.

Sleep inducing moves are not banned in Ubers. This is because its an accepted part of the game, just like shadow tag should be. People perceive shadow tag in a negative manner because they don't like it and on gengar it is ridiculously strong. But the whole point of this ban supposedly isn't about gengarite being broken/overpowered, it's about gengarite being "uncompetitive".

tl;dr your system doesn't work, you've just tried to insert something which looks good and fits your own argument.



I'll point out we actually agree on this ultimately. The difference is you are trying to make a weird, choppy argument which focuses on shoe-horning gengarite into being uncompetitive (which mainly relies on the fact that it is broken) and therefore banning it. My argument is that gengarite is just simply so broken and so good that it should probably be banned for the sake of the metagame, but gengarite itself isn't uncompetitive, unless uncompetitive is defined as "so good that it is harmful to game balance". That would be fine, except in the context of banning, "uncompetitive" is associated with reducing things down to pure luck/RNG - that is not true in this case.

I'm annoyed because I want this ban to be realised for the right reasons (saying "shadow tag is luck based" is not the right reason). Ultimately, it doesn't really matter because everyone who has played the meta knows mega gengar is cancer and needs to go.
 
Alright, this post is late, but I'll give my thoughts, if anyone actually cares.

As of right now, I'm kind of on the fence, though I'm leaning towards ban. Looking at the standards of what something has to be to be banned, Gengar doesn't exactly fit like the rest. It's not luck reliant like Swagger and OHKO moves, yet it's not AS overcentralizing as what I'd expect sleep would be. However, I feel Mega Gengar combines both of these elements into this big mix of luck and overcentralization that ends up making what in my opinion is probably a broken mon.

Firstly, lets look at luck. I'd first like to start off by saying that 50/50's will always be apart of Pokemon, no matter how much we want it out. There are just times in game where you have two options, both with about equal consiquences, and you just have to basically guess as to what move your opponent is going to go for. However, I believe Mega Gengar is different in the fact that it forces 50/50's. Every time a Gengar is out on the field, it's basically "Will it Taunt or will it Destiny Bond?" and you have to guess which it will do and hope you guess it correctly. I mean, there are other Pokemon that do this - take Froslass in UU, for example. However, the fact that Mega Gengar brings not only 50/50's, but also completely runs through an entire playstyle (stall) and can do extreme damage to another (balance) push it over the edge.

This leads right into overcentralization. Because Mega Gengar is so powerful, and because it deals with defensive playstyles so well, there is very little reason NOT to run it in this metagame. It's just so strong to the point where most good teams run either it or Gothitelle. Now, of course, this on its own isn't enough to ban a Pokemon, as we've had extremely centralizing Pokemon in Ubers before, but combined with the fact that Shadow Tag forces situations where you have to guess pushes it over the edge into uncompetitive territory.

All in all, I think this comparison to sleep clause is something I like to think about. In a metagame with Sleep clause, most teams would run Darkrai, normally shit items like Safety Goggles would become viable, and overall it would become a metagame based around a single status effect. With Shadow Tag legal, Mega Gengar would be on most teams, normally shit items like Shed Shell would become viable, and overall it would become a metagame based around guesswork and trapping.

Well, after writing that, I think I'm going to vote ban, lol.
 
I deliberately avoided using the words "uncompetitive" and "broken" because I really don't want to participate in an argument of semantics. I wasn't really addressing the discussions in the past few pages in particular; it was more in response to some arguments made over the past few weeks. There are quite a few posts in this thread that used OU-esque logic, but I am guessing close to none of those such posters follow this thread much anymore anyways.

I don't see uncompetitiveness as a black and white classification. Some aspects of the game are more competitive than others. My point was that I don't believe Mega Gengar to be uncompetitive enough to warrant a ban, and I'll be the first to admit that I'm biased toward not banning things from Ubers. The metagame is playable and interesting enough as it is, and even if that isn't good enough for you, it is good enough for me. For your criteria of uncompetitiveness of Gengarite, there is zero RNG involved with Shadow Tag, is fairly easily abusable (certainly to the point where the top 20 or 30 players could use Gengar more or less flawlessly), and sure it may break a crucial aspect of the game (switching) sometimes. However, switching is undeniably an important mechanic of the game, but so is limiting your opponent's options. So by your system, I would say that Mega Gengar is ~1.5/3 uncompetitive if you are looking for a number or something. For comparison, OHKO moves fall somewhere between 2/3 and 3/3 on your scale, and I stand by my previous vote to not retain the OHKO Clause.

Hopefully that answers your questions somewhat.
And yet you used other buzzwords that actually don't apply to the discussion. And what you call semantics is actually crucial to this suspect, as this is a very serious decision and should not be taken without considerable thought put into your stance and your reasoning for that stance. That's why I asked for clarification, because there needs to be more thought put into it than just "I feel this isn't a problem". And wait, you would vote to not retain the OHKO Clause? That means you want OHKO moves unbanned. Is that what you meant?

You are on thin ground trying to argue this point. No legitimate move or ability ever breaks a game mechanic. I'll run with ignore/remove for arguments sake here.
Priority completely ignores the speed stat, which is a mechanic. Pursuit ignores the priority given to switching out. Taunt removes the action certain moves. You can't have your cake and eat it here. Either nothing "breaks" a game mechanic, or my examples are valid as they ignore or remove one.
I suspect you're going to argue this further, but I really am not interested in getting into a semantics debate over what ignore/remove is defined as in this situation.

Sleep inducing moves are not banned in Ubers. This is because its an accepted part of the game, just like shadow tag should be. People perceive shadow tag in a negative manner because they don't like it and on gengar it is ridiculously strong. But the whole point of this ban supposedly isn't about gengarite being broken/overpowered, it's about gengarite being "uncompetitive".

tl;dr your system doesn't work, you've just tried to insert something which looks good and fits your own argument.



I'll point out we actually agree on this ultimately. The difference is you are trying to make a weird, choppy argument which focuses on shoe-horning gengarite into being uncompetitive (which mainly relies on the fact that it is broken) and therefore banning it. My argument is that gengarite is just simply so broken and so good that it should probably be banned for the sake of the metagame, but gengarite itself isn't uncompetitive, unless uncompetitive is defined as "so good that it is harmful to game balance". That would be fine, except in the context of banning, "uncompetitive" is associated with reducing things down to pure luck/RNG - that is not true in this case.

I'm annoyed because I want this ban to be realised for the right reasons (saying "shadow tag is luck based" is not the right reason). Ultimately, it doesn't really matter because everyone who has played the meta knows mega gengar is cancer and needs to go.

Priority doesn't ignore the speed stat. If it did, then when two pokemon used moves of equal priority (this includes +0 priority moves, which are the vast majority of moves in the game, by the way), then it would be decided at random which moves first. Priority and Speed are both part of the mechanic that decides which pokemon moves first in a given turn. Priority is the first, broad decider, but in the case where priority is equal, Speed is a much more specific decider, and in the case where even Speed cannot decide the game just goes with RNG at that point, as while you could continue to add more and more sub-deciders, there will always be situations where things are tied and keeping track of more and more things would just be excessively complicated. Priority and Speed are a nice mix, as it allows them to create ways for pokemon to compensate for stat spreads (increased priority moves) while still having a general decider that works in most situations (speed).

Pursuit doesn't ignore the priority of Switching, it simply has higher priority than Switching. The fact that it changes priority doesn't necessarily mean it breaks the mechanic either.

Taunt removing actions is like trapping moves such as Block or Whirlpool or *insert other trapping move here*. Theoretically it would fall under C. But one catagory alone isn't enough to be uncompetitive, and Taunt is not easily abusable (as it does not immediately activate upon switching in, regardless of what the opponent does, and requires a turn every single time, as well as being subjected to priority and speed), and Taunt obviously doesn't involve RNG. Therefore, it does not fall under A or B, and is not uncompetitive.

Sleep inducing moves are not banned, but they are limited. If Shadow Tag only worked once in the entire match, then it'd be comparable to how Sleep is now, but that's not how Shadow Tag works. For that matter, I, and nobody who posted seriously in this thread ever claimed that Shadow Tag is luck based, because it's not. The only "luck" is involved in double switching to try and avoid Shadow Tag, but that's not really "luck" as it is a player deciding switching like that is less detrimental overall than letting the pokemon they just switched in be trapped by Shadow Tag.

My argument being "weird [and] choppy" is because I'm breaking this down as much as I can to analyze it from multiple angles and to make sure that people understand why I came to the conclusion I did. As I said earlier in this post, this suspect is incredibly important and shouldn't be decided without serious thought.

I agreed with 9 Tales of Ninetales, in that people posting here (especially if they have reqs and plan to vote) should be giving the suspect considerable thought, provide reasoning and evidence if necessary, and elaborate in detail on how they reached their decision of ban or no ban. Especially given that it could result in the first banning of a pokemon in Ubers, it should be taken with extra special care.



On the subject of the slippery slope though, even if a precedent is set by this, at the end of the day people just calling for stuff to be banned without proper reason and support (especially given that just being broken isn't enough to ban something in Ubers) wouldn't affect anything. It'd just be people whining, like people are wont to do. It's not like the Ubers council would seriously consider people that go "omg GeoXern is cancerous ban this BS I don't want to play with this shit".
 

BKC

loose
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i have made it my personal mission to give my thoughts on why mega gengar (and shadow tag as a whole) needs to go without it making it a fluff-filled dissertation.

first, lets get it straight that if we want ubers to be a metagame that is in official tournaments, we need to get rid of any uncompetitive elements. i think this is unquestionable. therefore, if shadow tag is indeed uncompetitive (meaning that games with it have more emphasis on team matchup than player skill in deciding the winner of a battle), it should absolutely be removed, regardless of any pre-conceived notions about what ubers "should" be. therefore, if you are going to argue for shadow tag to stay, you either need to argue that it should be removed from official tournaments so you can play with every toy there is, or that it does not turn the tier into a matchup oriented shitfest in games it is present.

lets also get it through our heads that those who do not play xy ubers should not be giving their opinions on this. seriously.

ubers has dangerous threats at every corner, and the list of counters to them isnt exactly stretching down the block. when they can be removed from the game with absolutely nothing they can do about it bar running stupid, otherwise-useless bullshit like shed shell, there is a problem. you can choose to not run these mons that get trapped, of course, but then you arent packing counters to a ton of threats that the trap team is abusing in conjunction with their shadow tagger. relying on 50/50s to get rid of them before they do any damage is the most ridiculous argument on the planet, i dont even need to explain why this is stupid as fuck. thats not even mentioning the fact that even if you get your pursuiter in, mega gengar in particular can also fuck it over with its myriad of options. shadow tag is turning a great tier into a retarded abattoir of team matchup horseshit and needs to go.

last but not least,
i am simply relying on a well-built team and safe, smart plays to wear down my opponent.
good player alert
 

Focus

Ubers Tester Extraordinaire
And yet you used other buzzwords that actually don't apply to the discussion. And what you call semantics is actually crucial to this suspect, as this is a very serious decision and should not be taken without considerable thought put into your stance and your reasoning for that stance. That's why I asked for clarification, because there needs to be more thought put into it than just "I feel this isn't a problem". And wait, you would vote to not retain the OHKO Clause? That means you want OHKO moves unbanned. Is that what you meant?
I would vote to unban OHKO moves. I did vote to unban OHKO moves.
 

hyw

Banned deucer.
Oh well, all the more reason proving this community has sunken to the level I thought it once had. :) Nothing will sway the heart of an arrogant soul, so with that, have fun with a metagame truly broken by the oppression, everyone! ;)
 
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