Metagame On The Ubers Radar

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Hello folks. There's been a growing discontent among the playerbase about some issues in the tier, and I'd like to start a focused discussion that aims to get your opinions and supporting arguments/evidence before proceeding with a course of action.

The main one that comes to mind is Dynamax. Early into SS Ubers many of its players were content with the Dynamax mechanic. The three legendaries we had couldn't make use of it and they helped shape the metagame in such a way that Dynamax could be handled. It saw offensive and defensive uses and the metagame was overall in a reasonably good shape with different styles of play being viable. However, we all knew the fact that there were old Ubers Pokemon in the game code and also knew they could use the Dynamax mechanic and feared for the day they arrived in the back of our minds.

As you are all aware, that day is now - Pokemon Home released a few weeks ago adding a lot of volatility to the tier. We gained a large number of viable Pokemon made better by either their Dynamax interactions or new SS moves, usually a combination of both. I wanted to let the metagame settle a little and see how things fared but as it stands, many of us have identified that Dynamax is pushing the new metagame threats beyond reasonable limits.

So let's talk solutions. In my eyes and in many of those I've talked to such as our VR council and various SS players, there's one clean idea that stood out to everyone:

Dynamax Clause: Ubers Pokemon cannot Dynamax

This hits the right points for a few reasons. Firstly, it targets the issue directly - Ubers Pokemon using Dynamax are regarded as too strong. Is the answer to ban the biggest abusers such as Necrozma-DM? In the context of Ubers I don't believe so - we aim to preserve the number of Pokemon in the tier as much as possible and this solution does exactly that. We also still preserve the use of the mechanic - its likely to have uses in letting Pokemon from lower tiers deal with the wave of titans that return to the metagame. We also can't be sure that the Pokemon themselves are the problem without separating it from a mechanic heavily contributing to their strength, especially one that has already been found problematic in every other Smogon metagame. Should we then aim to just ban Dynamax on the biggest abusers? Considering the fast cycle of SS development (thanks, Nintendo) we don't really have time or the tiering headroom to play whack-a-mole as we assess and deal with all the problems individually. Let's not forget - DLC 2 will bring even more Ubers back and contribute further to the problem. Why not take the quickest and cleanest solution?

We have experience with a metagame where the strongest threats can't use Dynamax already (early SS), but I'd like to see your opinions on this idea before committing to it with a suspect test. Showing evidence for your arguments like replays would go a long way in helping others see your point of view. Keep it civil!

Luna's Banned now

Resident Ubers Goon
is a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
I personally feel pokemon such as snorlax and lapras find niches in the tier as dynamax mons, snorlax being able to switch into things like choiced marshadow and 90% of lunala, while lapras is a actually decent veil setter from what i've seen. the others are uhhh.. yikes, but with ubers it's a whole nother story. Necrozma dusk mane is a contender, but another thing i want to mention is the amount of ditto and scarf marshadow simply because of the autoweakness policy set.

A common man has said when ditto is in high high usage, balance is lacking in the tier. And while it won't change i feel from dynamax ban, thanks to thing like zekrom. But it will shoot down in usage, but i think necrozma-dick-mane is the biggest contender honestly. If you dont have a way to copy or deal with it, you auto lose. like im talking AUTO lose, and that's something ubers does deal with honestly, but nothing like this.

I definitely think this is something that should be a suspect test, and i think it'll be a close vote, but i'd be voting for Ban honestly


taking a break
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In my opinion, the cleanest solution is the one suggested above to ban Dynamax on Ubers-tiered pokemon. originally many players were thinking of banning mons with BSTs over 670, but that was a much more arbitrary standard that was prone to have some issues down the road. this one is much more straightforward.

The issue with dynamax in my eyes is that it's a fundamentally broken mechanic. the ability to do it at anytime means it has a huge range of flexibility, and can lead to somebody taking a huge advantage early on in the game since you never know when the opponent will do it; counterplay is very difficult. It doubling your HP means that many things that could revenge kill something now don't have the ability to. While dynamax can be used defensively against dynamax itself, oftentimes this means that the player who used it offensively first already got a kill and thus advantage of off the mechanic. I don't really think I need to argue this point too much, since everyone in OU and below clearly agreed on this, so there's no reason it wouldn't also apply in ubers.
Dynamax was previously allowed in Ubers since Gamefreak actually did something halfway intelligent and tried to balance the mechanic with the ubers mons in mind. None of the ubers could dynamax, and they also had some moves that would do double damage to dynamaxed pokemon. While the mechanic itself is still a broken mechanic in my eyes, the advantage one could get off of using it were limited in comparison (there's only so much advantage you could get off of Charizard or Gyarados or something like that dynmaxing vs. if the Ubers could), and it actually had some positive benefits to the tier in that it allowed for a greater diversity of pokemon to be used that wouldn't normally be very viable. I also think that the Ubers tier should try to be somewhat accommodating to dynamax, as it is one of the main features of the generation and having it not available in any of the main tiers would kinda suck, in addition ubers is known to be flexible on these sort-of things.

The addition of the new ubers mons that can dynamax showed how delicate the balance of the previous ubers tier really was. Additions like Necrozma-DM, Lunala, Mewtwo, Zekrom, and Reshiram already had very little defensive counterplay in the tier; the ability to dynamax just further makes them more dominant. Behemoth Blade and Dynamax Cannon don't really help much, as while they double their power against dynamaxed mons, many of them are resistant to these moves or are faster than Zacian and Eternatus and can OHKO them. These mons are very hard to deal with and a lot of players are relying on shaky checks like Ditto and Chople Berry Ttar to try to have a chance against them. Also, many of these pokemon are quite bulky and get even bulkier after dynamaxing, meaning they can push the stat boosts and momentum they get from dynamaxing to the fullest and revenge killing is very difficult. Most of the Ubers VR and other top players agree that the tier right now is in a bad place.
Banning dynamax on Ubers mons is good since it somewhat replicates the previous iteration of Ubers where only the non-Ubers could dynamax. I know people may be upset that some random mon that OU bans down the road won't be able to dynamax in Ubers anymore, but I really think this is a small price to pay for having a consistent, well-defined and simple standard that also won't lead to us having constant suspect tests. The tier will also end up more balanced and with more variety in viable pokemon and playstyles, as the Ubers mons who are already quite strong will now be somewhat balanced by the non-Ubers who can dynamax, and the non-ubers ability to dynamax won't create too much advantage in comparison to the ubers mons.


Ace Poker Player
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A major thing to note even if we go this route is Ditto. What is stopping a Ditto from copying a DDance NecrozmaDM, then Dynamax and wreck the tier?
I think we could put the clause as something like "You can't use Dynamax with Pokémon that are Uber tier or transformed into one" to prevent that, kinda imitating the mechanic that the gen 8 legendaries have naturally on the carts

Mysterious M

Sic mundus creatus est
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I am going to completely agree with Manaphy's post. This is my view and option as well as I believe that Dynamax should be banned from the Ubers mons. The fact that a defensive Dusk-Mane with boosts can dynamax and beat a Ditto that has copied its boosts realiably seems more than alarming to me. Something similar happens with other mons such as Reshiram, Zekrom , Lunala or Marshadow where they get extremely more bulky and be able to tank hits from most of the mons in the tier. Keeping dynamax for OU mons will be the key to balancing the tier and giving it more variety.

The metagame is in a really bad state playingwise right now and we should step in and fix stuff. I suggest a suspect test to happen soon and not drag this out longer than it has to be as a lot of Ubers mains have expressed a feeling of sadness with the new tier and you can see that from people dropping out of seasonal.
A possible trend I see when the DLCs are out, which may or may not be seen as a problem, is that most teams are likely to carry a dedicated Dynamax user, because something which can Dynamax is often stronger than an Uber which cannot. This creates a dynamic very similar to Mega Evolution.

It also has the weirdly counterintuitive effect of something's power level being directly altered by its Smogon tier. Say, for instance, Dynamax Kartana ends up being really good in Ubers, and completely separately, Kartana ends up being problematic in OU, so it's banned there. Suddenly, Kartana is a lot less viable in Ubers, specifically because it is Uber by tiering. Half the point of Ubers existing as a tier is that it's explicitly not supposed to be affected by OU tiering decisions.

I like the idea of preserving the Galar legends' niche of wrecking Dynamax users with their signature moves, but in most other ways, banning Dynamax outright feels like a more elegant solution. Alternatively, some sort of fixed criteria such as "things with 670+ base stat total and non-disadvantageous abilities", though that would mean Marshadow and Melmetal can Dynamax.
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It also has the weirdly counterintuitive effect of something's power level being directly altered by its Smogon tier. Say, for instance, Dynamax Kartana ends up being really good in Ubers, and completely separately, Kartana ends up being problematic in OU, so it's banned there. Suddenly, Kartana is a lot less viable in Ubers, specifically because it is Uber by tiering.
This is one of the reasons I wanted this to be a discussion rather than an outright test, because I do see this as a problem with the current idea. Let's take a more obvious example - Landorus-T. This mon tends to survive generations as a top OU mon. In Ubers, as long as its not banned, it can use Dynamax with sets with Max Quake and Max Airstream which are probably pretty good. We could end up making resources based off this potential. Then, say OU bans it and suddenly its unavailable, and the resources are outdated, maybe rippling across more analyses and VR rankings than just Landorus-T's. Let's flip the idea - OU re-tests an Ubers pokemon for a limited time. Does it just wreck Ubers now that it can Dynamax for a few weeks? Another one - OU is about to ban a pokemon that had good Dynamax potential here. What if people vote no ban in OU just to preserve it here? These are hypotheticals of varying severity but I still have concerns that placing the restriction at the tiering level has undesirable effects to various aspects of the site.

So what other ideas are there? Well, the above is an argument for a BST restriction instead, but the ideal line isn't easily chosen.

670 BST covers the box legendaries - the typical candidate to be Ubers immediately. Also bans Slaking. Would somehow allow Zygarde to Dynamax as long as its not transformed (very weird).
600 BST covers a bunch of other legendaries (Landorus-T, Deoxys-A, Latis, etc), Mythicals (Marshadow, etc) and psuedo legendaries (Salamence, Tyranitar, etc). Mons like the legendary birds, dogs, and Ultra Beasts are unaffected.
570 BST covers all of the above as well as the Ultra Beasts, Tapus, and pretty much every legendary. Naganadel is unaffected at 540 BST.

Once you pick a line to draw, moving it further down draws more scrutiny. It is possible to pick a line and then decide to add anything lower that becomes a problem to the "No Dynamax" area in some sort of balancing factor, but then it gets much harder to justify and understand. More Pokemon might release that just fall short of the set boundary but are really strong. It has risk of turning into a very slippery slope. If I was forced to pick one I'd say 600 BST, but the perfect solution isn't easily found.

One other idea is to let Game Freak decide rather than the tiering system. If they class it as Legendary / Mythical / <rare categorization>, it can't Dynamax. The first thing you would hear is that "Articuno can't Dynamax but Salamence can". The chosen solution should make a level of sense not just to us inside Ubers but to anyone that hears it from the outside. That's why I started the discussion with the restriction at the tiering level, but I'll be the first to admit it isn't perfect.
I think it is important to salvage some aspect of the mechanic in this tier, whether by BST or "legendary/mythical status". Lower tier things Dynamaxing expands the viability pool and I think is actually healthy for the development of Gen 8 ubers. Because this thread is just spitballing ideas, one I have always liked is requiring picking and committing to one dynamax user at the teambuilder and having it announced at team preview (this could be a gentleman's agreement on cart). This can supplement anything we come up with to further reign in Dynamax (and making it more similar to Megas) while keeping some Gen 8 mechanical flavor.
I have an idea as to what we should do about Dynamax, and although it would require a complex ban, I think it would be best for the metagame overall. My idea is that Ubers Pokemon have to use a placebo item to Dynamax, but non-ubers don't. In my opinion, this solves the problem of Dynamax while still keeping some of the benefits it allows. It allows for a more nuanced item metagame, as you have to give up a valuable item slot for dynamax. For example, Weakness policy Dusk mane can't just automize and survive a super effective hit to basically get as shell smash then dynamax to wreck your entire team and snow ball out of control. If it wants to Dynamax then it has to run dragon dance and then get two of them up before dynamaxing, therefore doubling the amount of set up necessary for this set. However, something like sand rush Excadrill can setup swords dance then dynamax without the item, because it's as bulky as wet paper and surviving a hit from it basically ends the sweep. This also boosts non-ubers sweepers by allowing them to not be instantly outclassed by all ubers. It would also allow for greater mind games then something like megas allowed, as you can't know whether or not the team has a dedicated Ubers dynamaxer or not, or whether they'll just allow a non Uber Pokemon to dynamax. With megas, you basically always know which one is a mega. It also mostly gets rid of another huge problem with dynamaxing; the abuse of choice items. Non Ubers can still use the choice-dynamax strat, but there really aren't any good abusers outside ubers.

There are, of course, downsides to this approach. Most of them however, are about how this will affect this future meta game decisions. Would this set a bad precedent for the future? In my opinion, not doing the best option for right now because of what *might* happen in the future is pretty silly. And yes, it is arbitrary. But every single option outside of nuking the entire mechanic is going to be arbitrary. We shouldn't be afraid to break the mold even if it's the best option.

Now, I'm not saying that this is the best option, but I would argue that it maintains the balance between keeping the mechanic of Dynamax and being healthy for the meta game the best out of all the options on the table. To be completely honest, the chance of this approach being the one taken is about the same as me becoming a moderator. I don't really have the pull or respect in the community to get this done, because honestly who the fuck am I really. However, I'm still curious as to what you guys think about this idea. Because even if I get shit on by everyone, I'm still glad to be able to further discussion on this topic. And if this post does absolutely nothing and gets ignored, then, well, TBH I don't have a positive spin on this lol.
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670 BST covers the box legendaries - the typical candidate to be Ubers immediately. Also bans Slaking. Would somehow allow Zygarde to Dynamax as long as its not transformed (very weird).
"Having that BST or being capable of transforming into something in battle with this BST" would cover Zygarde with no collateral that I can think of, barring the extremely unlikely possibility that Megas are reintroduced and compatible with Dynamax. Slaking and Regigigas are why I suggested the "no detrimental ability" clause -- those are the only two things it hits that I can think of, and the intent is going to be obvious to the average reader. Most people will read the ban and immediately realise it's supposed to cover box legendaries.

I don't think it's self-evident that Marshadow and Melmetal would be overpowered users of Dynamax. Marshadow has potential to be problematic, but it's worth testing. Deoxys-A is a potential issue when it can set its own Psychic Terrain with a 140(?) BST move, but it's still really frail, and it loses some power from having to run +Speed to reliably outspeed Zacian-C.


Moving Ever Forward
is a Contributor Alumnus
I am personally a fan of the 670 cutoff with options to bypass it if necessary:
Dynamax Clause: If a Pokemon has a BST of less than 670, and isn't <tiering amendments go here>, it is allowed to dynamax. [<exceptions allowed through tiering processes go here> may also dynamax.]

Benefits: This knocks the number of mons that likely need testing down to a few mythics with heavily skewed stats and removes the Slaking / Regigigas problem as we probably don't even need to test these to put them on the exceptions list (not that this is much of a problem, but it is bound to cause confusion for people who don't look for solutions to their own questions). It also removes reliance on OU tiering which is something the final clause needs in my opinion.

Despite not wanting to test every potential problem involving dynamax, it is still important to keep the door open for more bans than the cutoff hands out and allows for Pokemon banned from using dynamax by the clause to dynamax if it is determined to cause more help than harm or simply isn't a problem at all. Giving the tiering staff and players more room for playability optimization should always be welcome. (TL:DR you're making this too hard on yourselves with hard lines and no way to bypass them)

Drawbacks: It puts more onus on us as a playerbase as well as the tiering guys and takes more time to refine instead of drawing a halfway decent line and calling it over with. Asking opinions of the the playerbase and taking them into account has been a scary experience in the past and I expect this to be no different. That being said, I think this type of tiering is easier to understand due to the sheer power boost and utility of the mechanic in question.
We also have AG now, a tier where many of the anti-ban now play instead, so nominating mons that wouldn't be too powerful with dynamax but are banned by the clause anyways would likely stay banned unless us as the playerbase step it up and ask for its unban. This would only be a problem with optimization of our tiering philosophy and may not be a problem at all in the long run.

There is still some work to be done with this set up. It will require tiering effort which is something most of us aren't accustomed to. Overall the time and effort will depend on how much we want to optimize our tier from a playability perspective. I am not against putting in the effort, I am sure others will be though and disagree with this rule as a result.
I personally believe the dynamax mechanic should be outright banned from the ubers tier as a whole. Because while Pokemon like Necrozma-DM, and Lunala are extremely hard to handle, Other lesser used Pokemon can still be strong with the secondary effects of dynamaxing by their side.
While you're eliminating Pokemon with high BST's ability to dynamax, you are also not solving the problem with dynamaxing due to bypassing choice lock, and getting stat boosts and drops that would otherwise not be attainable on a choice lock Pokemon. Which can be relevant on for example scarf gmax gengar boosting its spA with Max ooze and still retaining the boosted speed from the choiced item post dynamax. Gengar was just the first example that came to mind. I realize it isnt the most viable.
The main point I am trying to make in this post is. Even though you're banning the stronger ubers from dynamaxing. Whats stopping something that doesnt meet the BST benchmark from getting the secondary effects of dynamax and using them to either punch holes, or clean up the opposition?
I agree with the posts above. It's not the uber Pokemon that are the problem, it is simply the Dynamax mechanic that is the problem. Simply letting any Pokemon getting an HP boost with stronger moves and strong effects each battle is already regarded as strong, it shouldnt be directly targeted towards Uber pokemon.
While they are only a few Uber pokemon that abuse Dynamax pretty well, such as Mewtwo and Necrozma DM, any other Dynamax Pokemon are capable of walking other Pokemon. For instance: Dynamax Rotom Wash is able to wall Galar Darmanitan even better with the additional HP boost.
Dynamax can simply be used to stop any Pokemon, whether it be a legendary or not.

In conclusion, I think either the current meta should stay in its place or just ban Dynamax from Ubersin general, because there is no reason to only prevent Uber pokemon from Dynamaxing when all the other Pokemon have different functions when Dynamaxing.
In my opinion, dynamax should be outright banned. no complex ban is going to stop dynamax from being strong in this metagame. There are pokemon outside of ubers that are viable dynamax users. The mechanic itself has little counterplay because the majority of dynamax moves and other characteristic have positive benefits that a pokemon that may be average in this meta reap from. ditto and quagsire are semi-efficient ways of handling it but only to a certain extent. Using dynamax defensively isnt efficient because it turns most of a defensive pokemon's moves into max guard. The only consequence of dynamax is if you use it unwisely. And thats pretty hard to do as sometimes people can just dynamax from turn 1 and destroy an entire team. A mechanic that doubles hp, gives you moves with the power that are close in proximity to z-moves with a few exceptions , and in general gives you beneficial stat boost, weather conditions, and terrains should not be allowed in the ubers tier
Based on the discussion so far, I believe that banning dynamax on ubers by tiering mons is the best solution for the current metagame. There has not been an example of a non-uber pokemon that would actually be broken in the current metagame with dynamax. The examples listed by the above posters (Gengar, Rotom-Wash) are not even particularly good or often seen dynamax abusers, both pre and post home. Gengar is too frail and not quite strong enough, getting walled by the darks, and faces competition from the overall superior Marshadow and Lunala. Meanwhile, Darm should never stay in on Rotom-Wash anyways and Rotom-Heat is better as a Darm check. I would also point to pre-home as an actual metagame and not theorymonning as proof that dynamax is not broken on non-ubers. Maybe once the DLC drops, stuff like Lando-T and Kartana would be broken with dynamax but I don't think a suspect based off theorymonning and speculation makes sense. If those stuff are broken, just revisit dynamax after the DLC drops.
As someone who's played a lot of SS, both pre-home and after its release, I disagree with the notion that dynamax is inherently too broken for Ubers.
Like Manaphy said, the mechanic was okay before home. But with the introduction of threats that hit hard while also having superior bulk (looking at you, DM and Lunala), dynamax abusers became increasingly hard to check defensively.
Banning dynamax entirely would go against the spirit of Ubers a tier. In addition, most of the non-ubers Pokémon used currently and pre-home are defensive. I doubt that dynamaxed Rotom or Ferrothorn are too strong too handle. A complex ban will also promote more diverse teams through the use of specific dynamax users (as was seen pre-home with Hatterene-Gmax and Excadrill).
I think Nayrz concern about the future implications of such a solution are valid but they apply to BST specific bans as well. In fact, a BST ban is quite one-dimensional in nature and tends to favour hard-hitting Pokémon while preventing their potential checks from using dynamax defensively.
As an example let's say dynamax for Pokémon with a BST of 670 or higher is banned. Life orb Marshadow could run rampant. While it only has a BST of 600, its stats are distributed quite efficiently (as is the case with many attackers) into speed and its primary attacking stat (physical). Would-be checks such as Necrozma-DM can't respond with a dynamax, thus limiting defensive counterplay. Note that this discrepancy between BST and strength is not unique to Marshadow and especially relevant for all-out attackers with low defenses. It seems foolish to ban dynamax in a way that favours attackers when dynamax is mostly used as a tool to offensively break teams.
That's why I agree with banning dynamax for Ubers Pokémon. This might require a complex ban at some point if specific OU threats turn out to be more than Ubers can handle, but still seems like the cleanest solution to me.

I'm not going to elaborate on a ban based on legendary/mythic rarity, custom items, or a designated dynamax user because those are terrible solutions UwU.

Edit: TrueNora posted as I was about to finish my essay. I agree with him 100%
Also shoutout to Goat Heart ♥ ice-master-523 Terracotta for their input.
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Rarycaris covers exactly what my first impressions are. OU’s tiering decisions directly affecting Ubers metagame super bothers me just on principle.

If I’ve understood things correctly; Dynamax Mewtwo and the like are obviously problems, ideally a line is drawn to boot them without hurting meta diversity and losing a key beta SS ubers quirk, there isn’t much time to do things one by one thoroughly but a decision needs to also be mostly future proof?

In that case, is it possible to ban current ubers pokemon (or whatever really obvious unanimous group) from dynamaxing and then add or remove to the list on a case by case basis?
Rarycaris covers exactly what my first impressions are. OU’s tiering decisions directly affecting Ubers metagame super bothers me just on principle.

If I’ve understood things correctly; Dynamax Mewtwo and the like are obviously problems, ideally a line is drawn to boot them without hurting meta diversity and losing a key beta SS ubers quirk, there isn’t much time to do things one by one thoroughly but a decision needs to also be mostly future proof?

In that case, is it possible to ban current ubers pokemon (or whatever really obvious unanimous group) from dynamaxing and then add or remove to the list on a case by case basis?
It is possible but it would make the ban list complicated and I don't think smogon enjoys doing complex bans as it usually ends up being a mess.
it’s very frustrating seeing the same tired blanket anti-Dynamax sentiment when it’s super clear we can figure out a workable solution that fits the spirit of the Ubers tier. Dynamax was NOT a problem with ANY mon pre-home (all the problematic mons are ubers). I think starting with a 600 BST ban is a good starting point (and we can experiment it down if we are annoyed at stuff like Darm but the meta will only get bulkier and bulkier as the expansions come out). I do believe BST should be the cutoff rather than tier to not have OU affecting the Ubers meta. BST ban is no more conceptually complex than saying
Rayquaza can’t click the mega evolve button, it just covers more things.
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it’s very frustrating seeing the same tired blanket anti-Dynamax sentiment when it’s super clear we can figure out a workable solution that fits the spirit of the Ubers tier. Dynamax was NOT a problem with ANY mon pre-home (all the problematic mons are ubers). I think starting with a 600 BST ban is a good starting point (and we can experiment it down if we are annoyed at stuff like Darm but the meta will only get bulkier and bulkier as the expansions come out). I do believe BST should be the cutoff rather than tier to not have OU affecting the Ubers meta. BST ban is no more conceptually complex than saying
Rayquaza can’t click the mega evolve button, it just covers more things.
I like your point, but Dynamax was a bit of a problem even pre-home. There were tons of Pokemon walling other Pokemon and using stat boosts and weather conditions every battle. It should be realized that the Dynamax mechanic in any metagame is something to be wary of, since almost any Pokemon is able to abuse it freely. As more Pokemon come back in the game, Dynamax will be more of a high risk of ban, since there will be so much more Pokemon that can abuse this mechanic. It is not always the Pokemon that uses Dynamax, but it is the mechanic itself. Take all of the other tiers that have banned Dynamax for example (LC, OU, Monotype, UU, etc.) and none of them ever put a Dynamax clause on any specific Pokemon, because take a look at all the other Pokemon that can use Dynamax for many functions rather than just Uber Pokemon (or in this case, the specific "overpowered" Pokemon I have listed in the other metagames that have banned Dynamax.) If we ban Dynamax by itself, then not only will the Uber pokemon no longer use it, but other Pokemon wont get to abuse it, either. In simple words, there should be no reason to put a Dynamax clause on only Uber pokemon when there are other non-User pokemon that abuse it just well. The other metagames that I have listed are a perfect example of that.

Anyway, I think we should just ban Dynamax as a whole because it seems to be a huge problem around alot of metagames. I think banning Dynamax to AG would be a good idea, since it seems to be fine there. The people above me have also made some points about Dynamax being banned. Feel free to reply or react to my comment with Angry if you disagree, I guess.

(Also, not saying that Dynamax was as much of a problem before home, but there were a couple of abusers that still made it frustrating to fight against.)


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I don't like the ideia of a full ban on Dynamax. Ubers is a more liberal metagame and (at least basing from what I remember from the last tiering policy discussion) full on bans should happen only on more extreme cases; if we have the possibility of going for some complex bans on the favor of preserving most of the mechanic, why not go for it? Of course we can't get crazy, but still, I'm more in favor of preserving Dynamax entirely than fully banning it tbh.

About the main proposed solutions for complex bans:
- Uber tier limitation: personally, I don't like this. It's still simple to see and covers basically all of the bothersome Pokémon, but like others said, it has the counterpoint of basically making OU dictate what can Dynamax or not. It also doesn't cover stuff like the potential UBs that can be troublesome and can't fall into this category.

- BST limitation: I think this is the best one out of the proposed considering the overall public. Easy to do and other tiers won't have influence on them, which makes it have almost no drawbacks. I don't understand people saying to make an exception for "bad abilities": why are we even worrying about saving Slaking and Regigigas? Nobody will use them even with Dynamax, so a blank ban should be fine. The cut harder to define, but 670 or 600 seems good starting points. I think the only problems with that solution are the already mentioned Zygarde or Ash-Greninja, but maybe saying that they can't use it if the Pokémon can transform into a forme with higher BST? Only drawbacks that I think would be revealing that Greninja is not Battle Bond if it Dynamaxes, but lol that won't be relevant since Protean will be shown right after. Same problem for the UBs mentioned above, but to a lesser extent.

- Pokémon-specific bans: Melee's Mewtwo proposing is what I actually like the most, but idk what the rest of community feels about it. It might be "too complex" even for Ubers standards, I think? Maybe we can make a list on the forum on those Pokémon, but it's not intuitive for new players or even to implement on Showdown. This is the best on paper and what I would favor, but implementing it seems hard.
My inclination would be to tier Dynamax formes separately from their base formes. I don't think it's that complex - in past gens we had a "Rayquaza may not Mega Evolve" clause, which is in a similar vein to "Necrozma-Dusk-Mane cannot Dynamax". It would allow the flexibility to deal with current and future problems while still allowing Ubers to be as inclusive as possible, which I think we all agree is part of the core spirit of the tier.

Going forwards, I definitely see some kind of policy to deal with Dynamax threats a necessity - right now, Dusk Mane is a disaster and Mewtwo is a problem, but DLC2 will bring with it things like Dynamax Xerneas, which will be even worse:

Versus Necrozma-Dusk-Mane

+2 252+ SpA Fairy Aura Xerneas Max Starfall vs. 252 HP / 252+ SpD Necrozma-Dusk-Mane: 212-249 (53.2 - 62.5%) -- guaranteed 2HKO after Leftovers recovery

2HKO's while setting up Misty Terrain, while defensive Dusk Mane fails to 2HKO back:

0 Atk Necrozma-Dusk-Mane Sunsteel Strike vs. 0 HP / 168 Def Dynamax Xerneas: 282-332 (35.8 - 42.2%) -- guaranteed 3HKO

Dusk Mane can Dynamax to hard check Xerneas, but being forced to save your Dynamax to counter a single threat is hardly optimal.

Versus Zacian-C

Zacian-C gets outsped and roasted by Max Lightning after one layer of Spikes:

+2 252+ SpA Xerneas Max Lightning vs. 0 HP / 0 SpD Zacian-Crowned: 300-353 (92.3 - 108.6%) -- guaranteed OHKO after 1 layer of Spikes

I'm not sure if the damage calc accounts for Behemoth Blade's doubled power against Dynamax, but in any case Zacian-C is forced to run both defensive investment and Behemoth Blade to check Xerneas, hardly a optimal combination.

Versus Ho-Oh and Lugia

The birds do no better:

+2 252+ SpA Xerneas Max Lightning vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Multiscale Lugia: 232-273 (55.7 - 65.6%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

Standard Lugia with Boots can't roost back to full health after one Max Lightning, meaning it dies to the second one. Specially Defensive Lugia can stall out Xerneas's Dynamax turns with Roost (it can heal up as the first Max Lightning sets Electric Terrain, then take two more before dying), but this assumes no prior damage. Lugia also can't do anything back, since it can't phaze Xerneas while Dynamaxed or poison it under Misty Terrain. Also, you don't want to be using Specially Defensive Lugia.

Meanwhile, standard Ho-Oh doesn't stand a chance:

+2 252+ SpA Xerneas Max Lightning vs. 252 HP / 52 SpD Ho-Oh: 446-526 (107.2 - 126.4%) -- guaranteed OHKO

Point is, even if you don't think Dusk Mane is a problem right now, there are upcoming threats which are an issue, so we better get a policy in place to deal with these issues sooner rather than later. Xerneas is just one example - what about things like Deoxys-A, which can now set its own Terrain to avoid priority and boost its own offenses, while avoiding the SpA drops from Psycho Boost?


taking a break
is a Tiering Contributor
Upon further reflection after reading more of this thread and talking to other members of the VR council, here are some more of my thoughts:

A lot of people have put forward opposition to the "banning dynamax on Ubers" approach, as it would make OU policy affect how we handle our tier. I don't personally see this as a huge deal, since at the end of the day we're not bound to OU policy even should this be implemented, we can do whatever we want and ban/unban anything we decide to (we're independent from OU policy to the point that we can decide when and when not to allow OU to affect our policy decisions, if that makes sense). However I do get the sentiment and this solution does seem dirtier to me after thinking about it.

A solution I've thought of and recently expressed here in this thread by Melee Mewtwo is to simply have an initial banlist and to expand it as time goes on through suspect testing or some sort of consensus by top players. I actually think this could be the most elegant solution if we want to salvage the dynamax mechanic, and it's not some sort of unprecedented thing since this is essentially what OU does when every new generation comes out. Essentially, a list is made every new generation and OU players decide which mons to quickban, usually including all of the cover legendaries and some other legendary or just otherwise generally very strong Pokemon. Dynamax would basically act in the same vein for ubers. An initial list would have most of the 670+ BST Pokemon on there, as well as possibly some of the more troublesome Pokemon under that BST threshold, and then should any pokemon become problematic using dynamax as time goes on, we can simply do a suspect test from there. Some have argued against having suspect tests like this, saying they would be too problematic, controversial, and that there would simply be too many of them, but if such an initial list was to be made sufficiently big enough it shouldn't become too much of an issue. Almost everyone now agrees that the tier is in a bad place. so if such an option was to be chosen it should be done quickly and efficiently and then it can be fine-tuned over time. I guess you could call this a "complex ban" if you want to but that's also what OU has been based upon since the beginning of mons with their initial ubers banlist at the beginning of every gen, and there's not toooooooo much controversy there. With this option, you get the least amount of pokemon unnecessarily being banned to use dynamax and there's no weirdness with BSTs unnecessarily banning masses of pokemon or OU deciding uber policy.

The other option is just to ban dynamax, which I do have some growing fondness towards. The way I see it, fundamentally the best argument for keeping dynamax around is for the diversity it would add to the tier in making some of the less viable mons more viable. This wouldn't change how, in my opinion, the mechanic in itself is still fundamentally broken (hack took issue with me using this word, calling it a buzzword, but that's just semantics imo), however it is true that the diversity it would add to the tier, should it be balanced, is much appreciated even by many of those on the pro-ban side, despite the mechanic being an unbalanced one at it's core. Much of the arguments I've heard against keeping dynamax around are about how dirty it would be; for sure, there would be much debate about what to ban dynamax on, what not to keep it on, how the ban would be implemented in the first place, etc. These are all sound arguments, but the way I see it, at the end of the day should dynamax be balanced out properly it can be a net positive for the tier; it's a big risk though. In my opinion banning dynamax completely is the more conservative option for those who simply don't want to mess around, and it's of course the cleanest, easiest, and least controversial way of doing things. With that being said, I have heard many players, even those on the pro-ban side, being saddened about how the tier may become stale or too similar to gen 7 should the mechanic go away completely.

I would say I'm currently 50/50 on either of these options, and I can be convinced to go either way. I do think that having an initial dynamax banlist would be the best option to move forward with, should people want to keep the mechanic around. At this point it might just be the best thing to see what the playerbase decides to vote on, although I do know that some big names will be making posts here in the near future so maybe that will sway many people, we'll see.
After writing this, I have some things to say on what clare said. A "Tiers" idea is not awful on paper, but the way that the post would have it implemented is very flawed. While having a "Other forms may not Dynamax" clause is not a bad idea, it's definitely not enough to solve the Dynamax problem. I'm not just talking about in the future, but also for the current meta too. What about Mewtwo? It abuses Dynamax pretty hard. And so does Galar darm, that's why it was banned after all. Unless you want to include Galarian forms, which doesn't really make sense. And the second best Pokemon in the tier is still allowed to dynamax, which would then make it the best pokemon in Ubers. We want to alter the metagame, not warp it around this one mechanic in the opposite way then before. Ubers should not devolve into who can and cannot Dynamax. And although denying access to Dynamaxing to anyone and allowing others to still use it will obviously make it important who can dynamax, it shouldn't be as severe as this would inevitably make it.
Er, I didn't mean for it to be interpreted as "other formes cannot Dynamax" - rather, I was proposing to have clauses banning particular Pokemon from Dynamaxing. Dusk Mane was just an example, and maybe a confusing one (functionally, Necrozma, Dusk Mane, and Dawn Wings are different Pokemon, despite sharing a dex number). I don't see such clauses as much different from "Rayquaza cannot Mega Evolve" - we luckily only had one problem Mega in past gens Ubers, so we could conveniently call it the "Mega Rayquaza clause", but I'm sure if we had multiple Pokemon sharing Mega Rayquaza's level of brokenness and Mega Evolution mechanic, we would have had more bans, and called them something else.
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