Resource NU Old Gens Hub

Bughouse

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All I know is this idiotic decision would remove the tiers best (close to only) spiker and two best ground types, one of which is one of only two viable spinners. And I'm not relearning the tier I've been playing for a decade because some people who don't play it feel that the specious need for consistency of approach to the same problem matters more than achieving the same outcome. I mean really.

The only argument for doing any tiering in Old Gens at all is to make them more enjoyable. If not for that, they should 100% be left untouched.

Earthworm's recent efforts in GSC UU/NU did that, similar to Oglemi's efforts in ADV NU before that. Several years ago DPP NU decided to boot both Snover and Hippopotas for enabling broken teams. This edit does not spark joy.

Finally, there is no logic in allowing transitivity in SM but removing it from old gens. Need I remind these all-knowing tiering admins that every current gen becomes an old gen some day? Next you're gonna tell me that the day gen 8 comes out, SM RU will have Drought banned all of a sudden so it can conform to SM UU.
 

Earthworm

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Tiering admins: I don't know of anyone in the old gen lower tier community who actually wants this transitivity change to apply in old gens. I'm guessing it is the desire for consistency that is the motive here but it's not worth sacrificing the state of the tiers that have a lot of historic play for. If we do this we will not only be affecting DPP UU/NU but also causing chaos in RSE UU/NU, tiers that have different rules regarding pre-evolutions.
 

Hogg

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In general, we are trying to make our tiering process more consistent across the board. Among other things that does mean keeping transitivity wherever possible, because frankly the idea of allowing something in UU or NU that is illegal in OU runs contrary to our core method of tiering. I agree that it gets a bit dicier with old gens, because it means we are changing a usage-based tier long after usage-based changes stopped taking effect, but I do think that consistency is important here.

EW actually does raise a pretty good point with regard to Gen 3 tiering. It becomes a bit awkward there, because real usage-based tiering didn't really begin until DPP. We don't enforce transitivity in the case of the NFE ban, partially because Gen 3 NU was created long after Gen 3 UU, at a time when we had a very different idea of what a lower tier should look like. But should we? I'd hate to completely decimate NU and PU for a poorly made (and inconsistently enforced) decision from more than a decade ago. But what if, say, the ADV Council bans Baton Pass next month? Should we carry that ban to the lower tiers?

To me there are two options. We could either have each Gen 3 tier determine whether to carry over such a ban independently, since the fact that tiering was handled very differently in Gen 3 means that enforcing transitivity is less essential, or we could look at reversing the NFE ban in Gen 3 UU (probably backed by a hard ban of Chansey + Kadabra), which would allow us to preserve transitivity without crippling NU/PU and with minimal impact on UU. I'm usually not a fan of fiddling with old gen lower tiers in this way, but in this case it might be the best option. Definitely something that needs more discussion, though.
 

Disjunction

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In general, we are trying to make our tiering process more consistent across the board. Among other things that does mean keeping transitivity wherever possible, because frankly the idea of allowing something in UU or NU that is illegal in OU runs contrary to our core method of tiering. I agree that it gets a bit dicier with old gens, because it means we are changing a usage-based tier long after usage-based changes stopped taking effect, but I do think that consistency is important here.
I understand and respect the argument for promoting transitivity when it's appropriate to do so. From the perspective of the general playerbase, it is reasonable to expect that if something is banned in a higher tier, it should be an issue in the tiers below it as well. The hierarchical system of tiers naturally implies this, even if the tiers themselves are, in reality, primarily self-contained metagames that have their own underlying dynamics at play. Keeping things simple also arguably makes it easier to transition from tier to tier as there aren't as many caveats to become adjusted to. There are arguments that can be made against these points, of course, but it's a subjective matter at the end of the day. I respect that it is the tiering admins' authority to make these calls.

My personal issue with this situation is not transitivity itself, but that it's being retroactively enforced on metagames that probably 95-99% of the general playerbase will never even look at. DPP NU specifically is a metagame almost exclusively played for fun once a year by users such as myself that are well past their expiration date. It's a fun, heirloom metagame that maybe picks up three new players a year. The same can be said for BW, ADV, and ORAS NU (GSC being a fringe case.) Despite this, these metagames that have gone unchanged for years are being affected for the sake of appearances by decisions the OU councils has made and will potentially make in the future. With regard to the two main points backing the transitivity argument, being accessible to the general playerbase and being 100% consistent in the eyes of the general playerbase, I don't think any of these lower tiers are relevant at all when they are already so unique and underplayed.

This also sends the implication that these tiers need to be tiered seriously. What happens when a transitive ban removes a central force in one of these metagames and everything becomes unbalanced? It's clearly not unheard of that this can happen, as the Sand Veil ban just removed the best spinner and the best spiker from DPP NU. Do we need to start forming old gen lower tier councils? It's not like every active TL is expected to be an active player in their tier's respective old gens.

I believe a good compromise would be reinstating transitivity for Gen 7 and staying diligent about it for the generations to come. The consistency that comes as a result of that is great for a developing metagame that can adapt to the changing community opinion with usage stats. However, I genuinely believe that you're sacrificing a lot in the name of consistency for these tiers that barely matter at all in the overall system of Smogon.
 

Earthworm

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In general, we are trying to make our tiering process more consistent across the board. Among other things that does mean keeping transitivity wherever possible, because frankly the idea of allowing something in UU or NU that is illegal in OU runs contrary to our core method of tiering. I agree that it gets a bit dicier with old gens, because it means we are changing a usage-based tier long after usage-based changes stopped taking effect, but I do think that consistency is important here.

EW actually does raise a pretty good point with regard to Gen 3 tiering. It becomes a bit awkward there, because real usage-based tiering didn't really begin until DPP. We don't enforce transitivity in the case of the NFE ban, partially because Gen 3 NU was created long after Gen 3 UU, at a time when we had a very different idea of what a lower tier should look like. But should we? I'd hate to completely decimate NU and PU for a poorly made (and inconsistently enforced) decision from more than a decade ago. But what if, say, the ADV Council bans Baton Pass next month? Should we carry that ban to the lower tiers?

To me there are two options. We could either have each Gen 3 tier determine whether to carry over such a ban independently, since the fact that tiering was handled very differently in Gen 3 means that enforcing transitivity is less essential, or we could look at reversing the NFE ban in Gen 3 UU (probably backed by a hard ban of Chansey + Kadabra), which would allow us to preserve transitivity without crippling NU/PU and with minimal impact on UU. I'm usually not a fan of fiddling with old gen lower tiers in this way, but in this case it might be the best option. Definitely something that needs more discussion, though.
Does what the playerbase of the tiers that this change affects thinks matter to the decisionmakers here? I am struggling to grasp how it could be essential to maintain consistency across old gen lower tiers when the community doesn't want it at all. If you are considering making an exception for RSE, you could also make an exception for gens up to probably 5 or so, and just leave all changes to OU as transitivity optional. I don't think a tier being usage-based has a lot to do with the desire people have to maintain the tier in approximately the state it was in when it was a current gen tier.

I am concerned that these changes will significantly alter metagames that already have very few people playing them. Some of the current players might be okay with playing the new meta but I imagine this will discourage many others. This could potentially result in existing resources needing overhauls with no-one qualified or having time or motivation to do so (especially due to the perceived shakiness of the reasoning behind making the changes to begin with), which could in turn lead to the barrier to entry for new players being higher. I think it is in the old gen community's best interests for this decision to be reconsidered.
 

Earthworm

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So is it your opinion that old gen lower tiers should be locked completely? I'm not necessarily opposed to that.
I am certainly not qualified to answer on behalf of all lower tiers. For some old gen tiers I think this is probably appropriate (many old gen lower tiers that existed prior to the next gen being released for example) but it would not work for RBY lower tiers, GSC for NU and lower, RSE for NU and lower, DPP PU and lower (probably? Akir), and possibly others. However, others should speak on behalf of tiers that aren't GSC.

Would you be happy with this kind of approach?
 

Hogg

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I'm in favor of a consistent tiering approach across the board. I'm not a fan of a higgledy-piggledy approach where half a dozen or more different old gen lower tiers all decide to approach tiering in a different way. I wouldn't necessarily be opposed to a "tiers with usage-based shifts are locked when the gen ends" as a consistent rule, though as you point out many lower tiers were created after the next gen was released, so we'd have to find a way to deal with that. But if the tiers aren't locked, then I see no reason why our standard process for transitivity of bans from OU down to lower tiers wouldn't apply.

EDIT: Also worth noting that these are my own thoughts on the matter, but I'm not the only person making these decisions. Don't treat my own opinion as an official decision or anything.
 

Disjunction

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Personally, I'm far more in favor of locking the tiers than the alternative. The only case I could think of that might be annoying is full bp chains in adv nu because it's a mostly unexplored team archetype. But I think that's perfectly reasonable to sacrifice in the name of maintaining the status quo for these metas.
 

Akir

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I am certainly not qualified to answer on behalf of all lower tiers. For some old gen tiers I think this is probably appropriate (many old gen lower tiers that existed prior to the next gen being released for example) but it would not work for RBY lower tiers, GSC for NU and lower, RSE for NU and lower, DPP PU and lower (probably? Akir), and possibly others. However, others should speak on behalf of tiers that aren't GSC.

Would you be happy with this kind of approach?
PU oldgens older than gen6 are an odd case where they are actually somewhat "fresh" and don't really fit into this conversion. Gen4 does almost fit this though so I'll be speaking on that.

I completely agree with freezing the tiers unless absolutely necessary. The OUs are regularly played and change all the time because of that, but the lowers aren't. As such, their primary focus should be historical preservation. Try to keep things as they were back in the day for our yearly visits back into them, like a nice museum of our history. These tiers go into cold storage otherwise, so there is not much point in trying to change them much if at all.

Ultimately this change is a fix to a problem that doesn't exist, and makes the tier worse for it. If i have to choose between taking the change or locking the tiers down, i would lock the tiers.
 

Oglemi

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Definitely lock the tiers that have already been "established" if that's what it's going to take. By established I mean really fully explored with a mindset to balance it where appropriate and then lock it. This would include those that were official during the current generation and those that have been created and thoroughly hashed out since then. Basically the following:

ORAS UU - PU
BW UU - NU
DPP UU - NU
ADV UU - NU
GSC UU - NU
RBY UU

These are the tiers that would now be "locked" as of this decision (imo). Afaik BW - GSC PU is still in a bit of development and tweaking (akir would know better tho). Thanks to ew's efforts gsc nu is in a good place and can probably be locked, and afaik rby uu is in a decent spot even after the bl purge. I don't think anyone's properly explored rby nu though.

I would be alright with ADV BL and UU getting a proper look and reworking too, but I also think they'd be fine locked at this point. ADV NU can definitely be locked though.
 

Oglemi

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I personally think RBY UU and lower/GSC NU and lower should remain unlocked at this point. I don't think they have any circuit representation at this point in time so hopefully that is okay.
Would definitely defer to your opinion on those two
 

Bughouse

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I don't generally like the idea of fully locking any of the tiers that have been primarily balanced and played since their generation ended, and I would rather the players and leaders of said tiers have the ability to continue to refine (primarily thinking of GSC UU and NU and ADV NU here, but also the RBY low tiers and all gen PUs which I know nothing about...) For example, I would love to see if banning Diglett from ADV NU would be a positive.

That said, if it's a choice of 100% locked or forced transitivity from whatever nonsense the old gen council comes up with... then lock it.
 

Oglemi

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My proposal of a formal written policy regarding old gen lower tiers (been a while since I've done this):

"Old gen lower tiers are locked in a vacuum unless significant issues* arise that need to be addressed through a formal testing stage, vote, and reassessment by a designated old gen leader, tier leader, and a small council of avid players of the tier in question; Or, if the tier has never been formally assessed** and tested for balancing issues and current tiering applications.

*Significant issues being defined as the discovery of a new mechanic (ADV SleepTalk), or a new strategy deemed to be uncompetitive (some new BP strategy). Individual Pokemon assessments should only take place in extreme circumstances and a large player majority to be required to change the status quo.

**Formal assessment and testing being defined as having an individual thread being made to discuss the metagame, tournaments and friendlies being played to test the tier, assessments being made by a leader to determine any problem Pokemon and strategies, trial and then formal suspect tests, repeat until a reassessment determines the tier to be balanced by the leader and the playerbase and then the tier being 'locked'."


A small council being anywhere from 1 other person to x amount of people with credentials in the tier (ie past or current PL players, etc), or some other voting method like tournament placements.

This would then lock any tier that was played and developed when it was the current gen and ADV NU (see my list in my post above) with the option to look at tiers that need it when issues arise.

Anyway, hard locking is a bad option (no wiggle room is always bad), and hard lining transitivity is also a bad option (the tiers are no longer connected aside from the generation they reside in).
 
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Honko

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I would vote for DPP and ADV lower tiers to be locked, barring the discovery of major new mechanics. Certainly for DPP, I think the remaining playerbase is generally quite happy with the state of UU and NU (before this Sand Veil ban), and my impression is that the same is true for ADV NU. There are potential changes to the metas that might be fun to try out, but I think one-off tourneys would be the best way to experiment with those. I would not support any attempt to make permanent changes to those tiers at this point.

PU (and ZU) might not be as settled, but I think they're irrelevant to this discussion simply because they aren't challengeable formats on PS (and probably never will be outside of RoA rotational ladders) and aren't represented on the SmogDex. That means they can pretty much do whatever they want. Whereas DPP NU is a recognized format, and PS now rejects half my teams because of this Sand Veil ban.

I don't know enough about RBY/GSC lower tiers or the current state of BW to comment on those, but locking everything sounds far superior to leaving them open to be upended by oldgen OU councils that have made it clear they will ignore the impact their decisions have on lower tiers.
 

shiloh

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talked a bit about it and we came to the decision that for this NUPL at least, DPP NU will be played with Sand Veil allowed, so Cacturne and Sandslash will be legal. this is so we do not have to shake up a metagame right before a big tour, and gives senior staff more time to decide what to do with regard to old generation lower tiers. keep in mind this decision is only for this nupl, so if senior staff decides that the ban stays, it will not be allowed in future DPP NU Cups or NUPLS.

tldr: sand veil is allowed for nupl vii, hippopotas remains banned
 

Hogg

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Hogg any thoughts on the written policy proposal above link would be appreciated
I think that's an interesting start, but I'm a little hesitant to push through any policy just based on posts in the NU Old Gens hub when any such policy is going to affect a wide cross-section of communities. Why not re-post the proposed policy in PR so that we can discuss there and allow for feedback from non-NU folks, especially since it seems like the NUPL decision removes the immediate need for a change?
 

Honko

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talked a bit about it and we came to the decision that for this NUPL at least, DPP NU will be played with Sand Veil allowed, so Cacturne and Sandslash will be legal. this is so we do not have to shake up a metagame right before a big tour, and gives senior staff more time to decide what to do with regard to old generation lower tiers. keep in mind this decision is only for this nupl, so if senior staff decides that the ban stays, it will not be allowed in future DPP NU Cups or NUPLS.

tldr: sand veil is allowed for nupl vii, hippopotas remains banned
Can we update PS to unban Sand Veil in NU until after NUPL so that we don't have to use Gen4Ubers as the format during the tournament?
 

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