Team Report Primal Tag! Top 32 Worlds Report


Who let marco in here????
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Name’s Alvin. I got top 32 at worlds. Not the most notable accomplishment, but worlds was fun so I’ll write something up.

Bit of history: I started playing competitive Pokemon in 2005. Played JAA in 2006 (which had restricted mons), and spent most of my time playing Singles, and primarily playing Ubers. There’s just a lot of thrill playing the game’s strongest Pokemon, and it’s something that I’ve continued to believe in for more than a decade.

For those asking where my username came from: Selfdestruct was my favorite move to spam in JAA. Selfdestruct is Jibaku in Japanese.

I watched some VGC in 2009 and 2010, but never stepped into the scene until 2011. I got top 4 at some Virginia regional which I don’t remember, but this was Wolfe’s breakout if I recall (top4 was Wolfe/IPS/Tyler/me iirc). Thank you Ruben for the team! I spent more time playing 2012 but ultimately ended up 22nd in some 51-man regional at the virginia barn. Oh and Wolfe lost to a Cryogonal. Stopped playing for a while, though I attended 2014 worlds as a spectator as it was 1.5 hrs away from home. I didn’t start playing again until the end of 2015 where I went 5-4 at Lancaster which highlighted how rusty I was. During this time I played Generation Showdown, a Battle Spot online competition that was pretty much a precursor to VGC2016. I got 9th in the world/1st in the US with a team I built primarily using Singles Ubers knowledge more than actual doubles knowledge. It was really fun, and reminded me how much I regretted not playing in 2010.

For the record, here was the team I used during Generation Showdown

The team building process was the simplest I’ve ever done. Groudon/Xerneas felt like an immediately synergistic duo, and I threw in hot supports for Groudon (Cress) and Xerneas (Kangaskhan). I added Salamence somewhat of a discount Mega Ray as a way to check Groudon and opposing Rayquaza, and Aegislash because I wanted a good steel type and it learns Wide Guard/can bonk Cress. I gave Cresselia Skill Swap because I overheard somebody in Nuggetbridge IRC mention that Skill Swap was an underrated move in VGC and that many Pokemon relied on their abilities. What better way to use Skill Swap than to reset the sun and give Groudon Levitate?

I hadn’t planned on continuing to play Pokemon in general and was going to go back to playing League of Legends. When the 2016 rules came out, I immediately got off my couch and knew that I was going to commit to this VGC ruleset. I mentioned before that I love Ubers, so I was extremely ecstatic. Having missed 2010, I could not miss this opportunity to use them once again in competitive play/

The transition from Singles and some VGC2015/basic doubles knowledge to VGC2016 was one of the toughest metagame transitions I’ve had to go through. Despite playing in Generation Showdown and performing well, I really underestimated how much of a chokehold Smeargle had on the metagame with these powerhouses. Getting above 1500 was a true struggle. Like most people, I started with Groudon/Xerneas. After finally somewhat fixing my Smeargle issues, I got top 4 at the first International Challenge, but I never really liked the team because Xern felt mediocre without proper protection. I stumbled upon Double Primal near the end of January and stuck through with that for most of the season.

Double Primal immediately became my favorite archetype, although my offline event records were mediocre with it. I fared poorly in Virginia regs (i went barely above 50% again i think), and my midseasons haven’t been great (got t8 in a 12 man midseason though!). Most of my accomplishments were through online stuff. Top 8 at the March IC, and 8-1 at the NPA (I used various archetypes for this, but mostly played primals). When it got close to Nats, there were so many anti Double Primal techs that I just ditched the archetype and went back to Groudon/Xerneas. Except I sucked at Groudon/Xerneas in general so I went 5-4 and barely got my worlds invite. I considered dropping at X-3, but I am really glad I didn’t. I squeaked in at 122nd place to finalize with 396 CP and with a worlds invite.


I watched the Kalos League to amp myself up for worlds. I can’t say this works for everyone, but it did for me. It reminded me how exciting battling can be, and quite honestly spending too much time prepping and not finding the perfect solution was really starting to drain my motivation. That is not the mentality I wanted going into worlds. I wanted worlds to be a great experience, and I did not want to stress too much while battling.

Let me explain a little something that’s probably unique to me, and that something other people might be weirded out by. I sometimes visualize battles in action form (as opposed to how they look like ingame). That basically means that I visualize my ingame battles like if it’s in the anime. By this, I can create effects in my head that make matches so much more hype and epic than they are, and it really helps me with enjoying them, especially in this year where restricted mons are allowed. Precipice Blades is already incredibly epic ingame - imagine if you can add your imagination onto that and tweak it into something a lot more. Extra hype -> extra fun at worlds. Extra fun -> less stress. Less stress -> better performance.

Ok I hope that didn’t uh...weird people out too much.

After failing to make Day 2 at Nats I immediately committed to not running Groudon/Xerneas for the rest of the format, or at least until the end of worlds. I guess this is a bit of a silly train of thought, but I felt that Groudon/Xerneas didn’t really have positive matchups and my knowledge of the archetype/general metagame isn’t good enough to prepare me for various anti G/X techs that’ll come about at worlds. Furthermore, the mirror matches aren’t something I felt confident with. I opened myself up to Double Primal once again, realizing that the archetype possesses some of the best pieces to take down the omnipresent Groudon/Xerneas. At this point of the format, people have gone through the depths to protect their Xerns, rendering most of the original Zong DP squad mostly outdated (Kang/Mence/Zong/Thund/Ogre/Don). While I’ve considered just bringing that to worlds, I realized that Double Primal will probably need quite some adjustments.

What actually got me interested in DP once again is when I ran into Gavin on the ladder using an interesting squad of Gengar/Bronzong/Kyogre/Groudon/Manectric/Talonflame. You may recognize this squad as the same six that Jon Evans took 2nd place at worlds with. Gavin smashed me (and I also played badly) so it piqued my interest. Gavin allowed me to use the team, and I liked it for the most part except that it kinda gets bopped by Gravity blades so I had to be extra careful around that. The core of Gengar/Zong/Kyogre/Groudon was something I’ve mostly stuck with for the remainder of worlds prep.

Meet my friend blarajan, or Rajan if you want to say hi to him irl because he gets triggered if you call him blara irl but I do it anyways. You probably recognize him as the Indian Smogon dude who can’t stop talking, and also as the 12th place player at Nats. He’s the brains behind the Mega Gengar/Zong/Kyogre/Groudon core (or actually, just MGengar/Zong/Ogre, but Groudon was a natural fit for the 4th slot). The core was intended to give an efficient and playable set of mons to fight against Groudon/Xerneas teams, maximizing the chances of beating the most common archetype. Our worlds call is that Groudon/xern will by far be the most dominant archetype, and we are committing to covering that more than anything else. As I’ve promised myself to not run G/X, I had to take that route. Or I could go with the Nails route and 50/50 matchups and stick with a protect the deer comp, but I have strong preference towards more balanced teams/defensive teams. Taking the Mega Gengar route instead of the usual Kang/Mence route does pose some issues as MGengar isn’t a catch-all mega unlike those two, but its ability to threaten top mons and dismantle enemy board positioning with Shadow Tag is incredibly valuable. Rajan and I decided to work on the worlds call together given our similar playstyles.


We started with Gengar/Zong/Ogre/Groudon. Actually that’s a lie. I started with Gavin’s 6, giving it a run on ladder to get a handle of its weaknesses and its strengths. Abusing Mega Gengar and Primal weather lockdown was the basis and it was something that didn’t take me long to get comfortable with, although I had some doubts (and I still do) of Mega Gengar’s overall effectiveness. Ironically, double primal was the toughest team to abuse Shadow Tag + primal weather against, because the archetype is heavily based around field control and it’s hard to do that against Trick Room and Skill Swap.

For worlds practice I mostly threw several alts into the 1500-1600 area. Too high on the ladder and I’ll get scouted. Too low on the ladder and I’ll get memes. Nats taught me that comfort is extremely important, and I made sure I got some games on the ladder to ensure that I went to worlds without having to overthink my options and get timered out. I want to be able to play my own game and not worry too much about protecting myself from what my opponent might do. I wanted to be proactive, and less so reactive. I also practiced some bo3s with Aaron Traylor and Rajan, and Aaron often brought the Groudon/Xerneas variant that would give the team the greatest issues, which was really helpful to us. Except for the part where we could never really find a solution around that. In return, Aaron got a lot of practice against Mega Gengar, which were surprisingly rather common by Day 2.

The immediate issue I found was the team’s staggering inability to take Gravity Blades, having 5 mons weak to it and 4 of them being outright OHKOed. It was manageable with Kyogre + Safeguard, but I still felt unsafe. There are certain setups that can bypass the team’s limited barriers, so I decided to look for replacements. Furthermore, while tanky Talonflame was actually solid, Manectric felt mediocre. It is worth noting that I can’t find a better replacement for Manectric alone, as Manectric checked a number of important Pokemon that no other mons could. Thus, I had to remove Talonflame if I wanted changes. I asked Enosh for help as I think he’s one of the few people who is actually bold enough to test virtually everything in this meta. We ended up with something like this


If you saw the NY/NJ invitational, you’ll see that Jon Evans rocked this team at the tournament. While we don’t know which side got the team first, it didn’t matter (his had different sets too). The Venusaur option was incredible vs. most Groudon/Xerneas teams, and Groudon/Venusaur/Zong/Ogre was for the most part relatively safe vs Big6 teams (though Smeargle/Groudon is a bit tricky to handle). So I liked Venusaur but Togekiss was pretty mediocre. However, certain issues arose when the team needed a Kangaskhan check that wasn’t Gengar if I can’t bring Venusaur. I also struggled vs primal mirrors in theory, though it was slightly easier in practice because Venusaur was something people were not quite familiar with. I replaced Togekiss with Zapdos as a catch all check to primals/Rayogre/Yveltal, although it’s not super good at any of those.

But we didn’t limit ourselves to Gengar/Zong/Ogre/Groudon + 2 mons. We looked into various other restricteds over Groudon. Some options included Rayquaza, Giratina-O, Yveltal, Xerneas, etc. I suppose that’s not a ton of options but we thought that Groudon was the most fitting (nevermind the part where Rayquaza won worlds with the Gengar/Zong/Ogre core!). Also yes, Giratina-O was close to being my Worlds call. Gengar/Hitmontop was also a combo we considered (but we didn’t have Eject Button).

I never ditched Gavin’s team during this part of the process, however. It served to me as a base of comparison. Whatever I wanted to use must be compared to Gavin’s six, which I was willing to fall back on if I can’t think of anything better. Here were some other variants that we were testing

Gengar/Zong/Ogre/Groudon +
  • Salamence/Smeargle
  • Salamence/Thundurus
  • Hitmontop/Salamence
  • Whimsicott/Terrakion
  • Kangaskhan/Whimsicott
  • Togekiss/Cresselia
  • Salamence/Thundurus/Amoonguss -Bronzong (this setup got several accs to Top10 on Showdown ladder - not mine ofc - and I wanted to test it out)
Along with things like Life Orb Salamence and Rocky Helmet Hydreigon. Jon also suggested Swampert at some point during teambuilding, while Enosh recommended Regigigas. We were quite desperate for options. In the end, I scrapped all the above options, leaving me with Manectric/Talon and Venusaur/Zapdos.

I’m also going to say this right now that offensive Cresselia was the bane of our teambuilding. And even with our finalized product, Cresselia is still a pain.

Also what’s a khan artist counter???

Part of me still doubted Gengar during those times. I looked into CressZong primals for a bit, but it either often suffered from too many Yveltal issues or I couldn’t fit a good 4 against Big6 variants. Enosh was convinced that Gengar wasn’t good and to some extent I agreed. I left myself open to options to replace Gengar with for a little bit, before moving back to Gengar anyways because part of me really felt that it was the worlds call.

2 Days before worlds I began to really see cracks in Gavin’s squad vs Big6 variants. Not to say that Gavin’s team was bad of course. I actually was pretty comfortable with running it for the most part and it gave me a breath of fresh air to a playstyle which I was beginning to doubt before using the team. But I wanted to be more secure vs Big6 variants. The Venusaur squad was helpful for that purpose, but its matchups vs other archetypes left quite a bit to be desired. At that point I stopped worrying about the gravity blades issue on Gavin’s squad. I’m not going to detail these issues, however. I think Gavin’s squad is still a really good team and Jon came 2nd at worlds as proof. It was more of a personal discomfort and I personally just wanted something a little bit more secure, and there’s nothing wrong with that I hope.

Anyways, I began to panic. On the flight to worlds I was thinking of just using my old double primal squad (Mence/Cress/Bat/Kang/Primals). Rajan was also stuck figuring the last two because he really disliked Manectric on the team. In the end, we consolidated Manectric and Talonflame into Zapdos and threw in Smeargle as a catch-all of some sort. However, by this time we no longer had the time to test Zapdos/Smeargle and did everything with those two based off theory. Despite that, I had a good amount of comfort with Gengar/Zong/Ogre/Groudon, and I was willing accept the theory-based play with Smeargle and Zapdos. I was also considering Mence/Thund/Zong/Smeargle/Kyogre/Groudon, but ultimately went with Smeargle/Zapdos. Basically I played worlds with a relatively unpolished team and learned how it works on the spot.


Me and Rajan ran the exact same squad. He'll be writing his own report later

Gengar-Mega @ Gengarite
Ability: Shadow Tag
Level: 50
EVs: 44 HP / 240 Def / 4 SpD / 220 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 30 Def / 30 SpA
- Sludge Bomb
- Will-O-Wisp
- Hidden Power [Water]
- Protect

Meet Mega Gengar, the star of the show. Mega Gengar provided the team with an answer to the game’s most popular Pokemon such as Mega Kangaskhan, Primal Groudon, and Xerneas. But more than that, Shadow Tag made it easy to let it achieve that goal. Combined with the primal weathers and the primals’ own ability to just destroy stuff, Gengar ensured that there was no escape to their wrath, and no way to reset board position (hey this is a cool buzzword). Gengar served as a way to dismantle cores, punishing improper board positioning and sealing games early. It’s a bit hard to explain what Gengar does in its entirety, but Shadow Tag is a really strong ability in this format despite things dying quickly enough that you aren’t switching around much anyways. Being able to exploit the weather dependencies of the primals by locking down a favorable position grants me so much control as long as I can manage my KOes effectively so I don’t end up making my trapping useless by giving them a “free” switch by recklessly clicking Eruption or something.

Sludge Bomb is self explanatory, Will-O-Wisp is there to weaken Kangaskhan and Rayquaza, primarily, and HP Water removes Groudon. Protect is a necessity imo so Gengar can lengthen its trap duration. There are like 17 or so viable moves Gengar can run, but overall we (me/Rajan/Gavin/Jon, at least) felt that this particular set was the most punishing to the most common team in the format. I really wish we could fit Shadow Ball, and removing HP Water was an option since Groudons have started to become wary of HP Water Mega Gengars and often fled the scene before I could Mega Evolve and trap it. However, the insurance vs early game Groudon was crucial to how the team functioned, and wasn’t really replaceable IMO.

Most of you are probably wondering why I have so much Defense on it. The point of having that much defense is that I have an 80%ish chance to survive Jolly MKang Sucker Punch, which is useful in cases where I can’t burn it (ahem Crafty Shield). This much Defense was more useful than I thought, as it allowed Mega Gengar to survive Mega Ray Dragon Ascent most of the time (without extra boosts), and most Mega Mence actually can’t OHKO it. During the tournament, it lived every Kang Sucker Punch thrown at it (barring one which was Helping Handed. It survived the first hit which bothered me as it revealed how much defense my Gengar had lol). Most importantly, having that much defense allowed me to confidently Sludge Bomb in the face of Kangaskhan so I was never really pressured to make reads against it when Wisp was an unsafe move to go for. I can’t stress how useful the physical bulk was.

The Gengar is shiny and in a Dusk Ball for a small competitive edge - it ensured that Sludge Wave was a possibility.

Bronzong @ Lum Berry
Ability: Levitate
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 68 Def / 188 SpD
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
- Gyro Ball
- Trick Room
- Skill Swap
- Hypnosis

The posterchild for blind Hypnosis.

Still don’t like Zong as I feel that it’s basically half a Pokemon, but Xerneas has made it almost a necessity on teams that want Trick Room as the sole Trick Roomer that can actually beat it. Set isn’t really anything special, except I had the forbidden Skill Swap + Hypnosis combo. Skill Swap is crucial to the functions of double primal imo. I had Safeguard over Hypnosis initially (Safeguard + Gengar is pretty fun vs Smeargle!), but I missed the pressure and Swagger-esque panic button that Hypnosis offered. It also gave me an out vs Gravity to some extent. I’m not going to get in depth for Bronzong since it’s kinda obvious what it does (Groudon+Xern check when paired with Kyogre). EVs allow it to survive Kyurem-W Fusion Flare in the sun or something. I’m done losing to Kyurems. Regardless of my dislike for Zong, it did what it was supposed to do.

I suppose blind Hypnosis isn’t really a satisfying way to clutch me out of matchups, but it’s like a 60% accurate OHKO move in this meta.

Why can’t this slot be Cresselia instead

Groudon-Primal @ Red Orb
Ability: Desolate Land
Level: 50
EVs: 36 Atk / 220 SpA / 252 Spe
Mild Nature
- Eruption
- Overheat
- Precipice Blades
- Protect

Groudon itself needs no new introductions. Strong Pokemon. Also my 2nd favorite mon in the whole game. What probably needs introduction is the set. I’ll say this right now that I’m not a fan Special Groudon and glass cannon Groudon in general. I’ve always felt that Groudon should be a tank rather than a sweeper, but I decided to not go with my beliefs and instead run something a bit wild. Unlike Gavin’s/Jon’s team, I was more comfortable with having a split fast/slow primal in double primal (ironically due to Gavin himself as his original February squad featured fast Groudon and slow Kyogre and I got used to having split speeds for flexibility). Being fast allowed Groudon to be a better lead vs Big6 variants, outpacing fast Smeargle and bulky Xerneas. At the same time, however, I felt that Max Speed was a bit excessive and I just wanted to blow stuff up. I don’t care much about Groudon speed ties as I have two HP Waters and Zong/Ogre anyways. I also feel that most Xerneas won’t be hitting 142+ speed if they’re not running 156+ anyways. So I decided to use a +SpA nature.

Eruption = win. Expecting an upsurge in Groudon/Xerneas teams, I made my Groudon more specially based to leave behind the biggest trail of destruction upon them if given the chance. Eruption with +SpA allowed Groudon to just flat out OHKO Mega Kangaskhan if given the chance (and it happened twice I think). Overheat also did a ton of damage, once again OHKOing Kangaskhan and wiping out glass cannon Cress with a little bit of chip damage. This is important as Cresselia was a major pain, and having the option to just blast it away is really strong. I opted for Precipice Blades over Earth Power because I hate full Special Groudon and I still think PBlades is Groudon’s best move. The 36 Atk EVs were mostly cosmetic and I wanted a tiny bit more punch to PBlades.

I opted for Mild instead of Rash because I didn’t want to just get dunked on by Ogre Ice Beams/Mence HV/Xern Dazzles.The chance to get OHKOed by PBlades was annoying (though potentially useful), but I never got OHKOed by one except by a crit.

Kyogre-Primal @ Blue Orb
Ability: Primordial Sea
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 252 Def / 4 SpA
Bold Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 0 Spe
- Origin Pulse
- Ice Beam
- Thunder
- Protect

The 2nd part of Double Primal. Actually no - this is a Kyogre based team, but I didn't feel like fixing the team's ordering. Kyogre in conjunction with Bronzong and Mega Gengar applies heavy pressure to Groudon/Xerneas teams as they have a difficult time taking its extremely powerful Origin Pulses, and the constant threat of Shadow Tag+HP Water and Trick Room+Skill Swap between the two non restricteds gives me outs vs both fast and slow modes. I opted for Origin Pulse/Thunder/Ice Beam to maximize coverage (really, this is just hitting opposing Kyogre, but I think this is important because of Double Primal’s natural weakness to RayOgre. Also mirrors) at the price of being able to blast through Wide Guard more easily. I’ve also always used that set on Ogre, except against Randy in NPA because I knew he’d run some Big6 stuff.

I’ve used Modest with max physical bulk for pretty much the entire season (with some speed creep here and there), but for this one I opted for Bold to give myself a really good chance of surviving a Gyro Ball + 2x PBlades. Another relevant calc is surviving Kangaskhan Double Edge + Timid Groudon Earth Power. I also expected most people to be calcing for Modest, so Bold’s extra bulk can throw people off for a bit. Being Bold has been really clutch overall and I don’t regret it, though the drop in power is somewhat noticeable and annoying. I opted for 0 Speed because I wanted to underspeed most Groudons in BigB, while maintaining a Speed advantage against Mega Salamence in Tailwind. However, it appeared that BigB Groudons have slowed down even more for the most part so I never really outsped anything in Trick Room. I’ll have to re evaluate.

Zapdos @ Sitrus Berry
Ability: Static
Level: 50
EVs: 28 HP / 224 SpA / 4 SpD / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / 30 Def / 30 SpA
- Hidden Power [Water]
- Thunderbolt
- Substitute
- Tailwind

#TeamInstinct. One of my favorite nonrestricteds in the whole game too. Too bad it’s always a bit in the shadow of Thundurus...

Ahem...ok. One of the two last minute techs on the team, Zapdos was mostly there because the team likes Tailwind and that it could be used as a soft check to primals/Yveltal/Rayquaza/Salamence. It doesn’t do a particularly good job at any of these (and it especially doesn’t beat Rayquaza, although it can set up Tailwind in front of it, fearing nothing but LO Draco), but it’s not bad either. Tbolt and HP Water are standard. Don’t tell me 2 HP Waters is excessive. Substitute was clutch and helped out vs Salamence/Smeargle leads. A Zapdos under a Substitute is difficult for the core of Salamence/Smeargle/Bronzong/Groudon to deal with, and forces Salamence to Double Edge the Sub away if it wants to stop Zapdos from wreaking havoc. This is great because this burns Sleep turns from my Groudon, and Zong/Groudon required some setup so it was difficult to take advantage of Zapdos’s sleeping turns. Essentially, Zapdos gave me a gameplan that allowed me to tank sleep in certain scenarios, and played a role against BigB where the team’s lack of Xerneas protection combined with my multiple anti-Xern measures deterred Xerneas from being used. The Sub Zapdos + Groudon setup vs BigB would have been a bit better if Groudon had HP Ice. If I can snipe the Salamence, then Sub Zapdos would have been super hard to break with Smeargle Zong, and Groudon has to fear HP Water and requires Gravity and TR setup, which means that Zapdos will get a solid amount of free hits.

Anyways, Zapdos’s use vs BigB was mostly theoretical and it worked out better than I expected at worlds. I hadn’t really considered its use to burn sleep turns from its partner before actually playing it, and I want to look more into this. Zapdos is also not awful vs Khan Artist because nobody wants to Fake Out the Zapdos so I feel like I can often get a free Sub. Zapdos’s performance wasn’t superstar-level, but it did what it had to.

Smeargle @ Chesto Berry
Ability: Moody
Level: 50
EVs: ---
--- Nature
IVs: 0 Atk / --- Spe
- Wide Guard
- King's Shield
- Dark Void
- Crafty Shield

“If you think you have a bad matchup, just bring Smeargle” - blarajan 2016

Public enemy #1. Smeargle set isn’t mine so I’m blanking out several aspects until I’m allowed to post them. Tbh Smeargle’s role on this team wasn’t quite clear. It was quite abstract, or so to speak, giving me a general utility and also a universal panic button to virtually every matchup because Dark Void + Moody is just straight up silly. Smeargle offers immense team preview pressure and is the reason why this meta feels flowcharted sometimes. Slapping a Smeargle on various team archetypes can mess with these flowcharts and leave opponents confused. The set is for the most part standard, but the combination of King’s Shield + Chesto Berry gives me an out vs Khan Artist. This set is extremely Taunt bait and lacked Focus Sash so I had to be careful.

You know you’ve done something horribly wrong to the meta when your name is also used as a verb. There were a few opponents who were Smeargled by me and I apologize (especially Tommy). Anyways, it is what it is. Smeargle wa overall a fantastic performer. Chesto didn’t get used Day 1, but came in handy for Day 2, though it didn’t matter too much I guess, because every time Chesto came into effect I was facing another Chesto Smeargle. I really did not expect Chesto Smeargle to be a thing outside of me and Rajan, but I guess it is now.

Team’s goal: Make my opponent just as clueless against my team as I am at piloting it. Then have Smeargle do its thing. Use Groudon to weaken things early game, then clean up with Bronzong + Kyogre.


I came into this with not a lot of expectations. All I set for myself was not to go negative at worlds. That does not mean I’m not aiming for the top! But I want to keep my expectations low so I don’t stress myself. One hurdle at a time! Keeping calm and playing comfortably is incredibly important if I want to go far, but I had to mentally set myself to short goals to ensure that I’m not pressured in my later rounds.

Round 1: Luke Dunscombe


Round 1 quickly punched a hole in the team. Weavile + Primals is a really hard matchup, and I don’t have a lot of outs to that. What’s more is that I found out that the Weavile is Life Orbed, OHKOing Zapdos with a single Ice Punch. At the end of Game 1 he sealed away my chances of winning with Role Play Thundurus, and his fast Special Groudon gave me no chance of a comeback. Game 2 went similarly, except I tried to dance around the Weavile using Gengar and the primals while saving Zapdos for later. But this led to an issue where his Salamence got a Tailwind off while I couldn’t match it as Weavile was very threatening. I was able to Gengar lock his Groudon in, but Gengar was in no position to take down Groudon due to Tailwind being up. Origin Pulse also missed, which sealed away my hopes of winning. Needless to say this was not the kind of start I wanted.

In the meantime Rajan got Mark McQuillan round 1 and it was streamed near the entrance. He had to reveal basically every tech to win that round. This put both me and him in danger as we are running the same team, and a lot of people watched that match due to its length and convenient placement.

LL [0-1]

Round 2: Alberto Lara


Round 1 got me a hard matchup and Round 2 got me a Day 2 player from US Nats. Kangaskhan + Whimsicott scared me, and Cresselia was not something I wanted to face. I led Gengar Zong into Kangaskhan Cress. I really shouldn’t have led Gengar Zong, but I did, and it worked somehow. Kangaskhan Fake Outted the Zong and Cresselia Icy Winded. Gengar burned the Kanga while Zong flinched. I switched Gengar out to avoid the potential Psychic and set up Trick Room as Kangaskhan deals no damage thanks to the burn. Fearing the reverse Trick Room, I threw a blind Hypnosis at the Cress and it hit. Then I OHKOed it with crit Eruption. Game was pretty much over from there as he had no way of handling Zong Ogre. Alberto adjusted to Salamence/Cress lead game 2 while I went with Gengar/Groudon. Salamence Protects but I nuke Cress with Sludge Bomb Overheat. The rest of the game went downhill for Alberto as Bronzong was able to wall the rest of the team.

WW [1-1]

Round 3: Tyler Bennett


Another Groudon Xerneas. This match isn’t something that I fully remember the details of, but Groudon was able to deal immense amounts of damage with Eruption. I led Smeargle Groudon into Salamence Scrafty. I don’t remember what exactly happened but Tyler went straight for the OHKO on Smeargle with Double Edge if I recall. I also probably crit Scrafty with Eruption and the game just went downhill for him from that point. Game 2 he led Smeargle/Mence while I went for Zapdos/Groudon. I was able to get a Sub up and put him in a horrible position, but almost threw the game when I went too greedy for the HP Water on Groudon as it Protected while Kyogre got Dark Voided. I was in such a good position that doing that going for that kind of play was really risky. I should’ve just KOed the 1 HP Smeargle. Regardless, the match was fairly close and a lot of switches happened, but I was able to take it in the end. After the battle he revealed that his Groudon’s OT was mine. I gave away Groudons at the start of this format (took me 3 weeks to soft reset for one…). I thought that was cute and wished Tyler the best of luck in the rest of the tournament

WW [2-1]

Round 4: Panyamut Noijan (???)


Sorry, my handwriting sucks so I don’t remember his first name. Anyways, Dialga Groudon is an interesting combo and is certainly not a bad one. Dialga is quite annoying to my team as I don’t have a good way to dent Dialga outside of Groudon. Luckily, my Groudon had Eruption so I had no issues getting past this wall of Intimidates from both Mence and Lando, so my plan was to get Groudon to spam that. Game 1 he led Landorus-T and Dialga while I led Smeargle/Groudon. I pressed Wide Guard + Eruption while Lando Protected and Dialga dented Smeargle with Dragon Pulse. Smeargle got a Speed boost and I spent the rest of the game clicking Dark Void and Eruption. Sorry about that.

Game 2 I decided to go Zapdos/Groudon to improve my matchup vs Salamence, but he led genies instead. I could go for Tailwind/Protect into Eruption spam, but I predicted the Taunt on Zapdos and Earthquake on Groudon. Instead he Tbolt Rock Slides the Groudon and put me in a rather tough spot. But Smeargle comes in and gets a Speed boost. After a successful Wide Guard vs Crafty Shield prediction, I was able to take over the game once again with Dark Void + Eruption. Again, I’m sorry.

WW [3-1]

Round 5: Jonathan Neville (TMGold)


More genies. Jonathan was sporting the hugs and kisses archetype, and I was a little scared facing him as my team doesn’t fare too well vs Kangaskhan + Thundurus + Kyogre in back. Game 1 he led Thundurus/Ferrothorn while I led Gengar Zong. I immediately attempted to Gengar lock him + Groudon but I was a little impatient and didn’t scout out his Ferro’s Protect like I should have. This enabled me to get only a single KO on Thundurus while Ferro shields itself and kyogre comes in. This wasn’t good but I was able to turn the position around again as I attempt to reset the sun by switching around. Kyogre dodged a Power Whip, but survived the next one (good to know that Water Spout + Power Whip doesn’t KO mine). Sun comes back up and I win.

Game 2 started by him leading Kang/Thund while I led Gengar/Kyogre. Bit of a nasty lead matchup but I was able to somehow set the tone for this game. But I tried to overreach somewhere and my Bronzong got KOed early. Whatever the reason, I ended up losing control of the weather and lost game 2

Game 3 was him leading genies. By this point, I know that his Thundurus is bulky life orb and his Lando is Choice Band. Kyogre hangs on to Thunderbolt + EQ with 2 HP thanks to Bold but double misses Origin Pulse. I don’t remember what happened but Kyogre was useful as a death fodder so I can reset the sun. Game came down to Zong/Groudon vs Kyogre, and I hit a couple of PBlades to win the game.

WLW [4-1]

Round 6: Aline Kleinschnitz


On team preview, this looked like the team that Phil used to win Australia Nats. This one was a bit bothersome as I figured out that the Xerneas was speedy and therefore weakened my Eruption game 1. She appeared to not have Wide Guard however, as I was able to spam spread moves repeatedly to take down Xerneas. With Xerneas down, the rest of the game fell from there. I don’t remember what she brought game 2 but I adjusted my lead from Smeargle/Groudon to Gengar/Groudon. Xerneas was moved into the backline which also helped make things a bit easier for me. Not a whole lot I can actually say in this series. She ended up shutting off her DS because she didn’t want to see the defeat screen, although she didn’t look like she ragequit.

WW [5-1]

Round 7: Tommy Cooleen (Tman)


I really didn’t want to have to face Tommy for Day 2 qualification, and once again Dialga was a tricky matchup as Groudon was my only actual out against it. Anyways, Tommy had a really neat team featuring the Groudon mode from BigB and a Dialga to patch several Kyogre related issues, and I was honestly surprised that he didn’t bring Groudon/Xerneas like he would to big events. I recommend others to look at this team, given that Rayogre won worlds. Although Tommy told me he lost to Wolfe but let’s be real Wolfe probably knows how to play against Dialga more than anyone else + timer is still a thing.

For Game 1 I led Smeargle/Groudon into Scrafty Dialga and I OHKOed Dialga with crit Eruption and the game was over for him from there. Tommy made the smart adjustment to move Dialga into the back and led with Salamence Scrafty so that my Groudon can’t just destroy it. I didn’t play well in this match, but my Smeargle got some evasion boosts and proceeded to become a pain. I ended up winning the match later at the back of my own primals. I wished Tommy the best of luck in for his final round.

At this point Rajan was 6-0, taking down James Baek to qualify for Day 2.

WW [6-1]

Round 8: Nobody

Thank you, autodrop. That round I just had to sink in that I survived Day 1. Tommy didn’t make it which made me really sad. Spent the night deciding on whether I should change my team or not. Chesto Smeargle was useless (but was useful for Rajan), and I'm still feeling a bit uncomfortable. In the end, I made the final decision to not change a single thing.

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Who let marco in here????
is a Top Team Rater Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Live Chat Contributor Alumnusis a CAP Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion

Round 1: Patrick Smith(SalaMenace)


Starting off the day, I got none other than the NPA MVP. Patrick is a powerful battler, having also gotten 2nd place at Anaheim regionals. With that said, I knew I was in for a tough match, but I try not to fear names. Respect all, fear none. Patrick brought BigB which meant that I was fairly comfortable in the matchup, although it is by no means an autowin

Game 1 began with our Smeargles trading Dark Voids. Patrick revealed that he too had Chesto on Smeargle. Nothing really happened for a bit. My Smeargle got Speed boosts while his Smeargle got Speed drops, but he set up Trick Room and it became a problem as his Smeargle took approximately 10% from Gyro Ball and got an evasion boost. His Smeargle eventually got a Speed boost, allowing my Bronzong to knock it out. Some time during this match I threw a blind Hypnosis at Groudon, only for it to wake up in 1 turn while he threw a blind Hypnosis at my Kyogre. The match eventually came down to me pressing Hypnosis on the wrong target as he went straight for a Swords Dance on Groudon while I Ice Beamed the Groudon slot in rain predicting the Salamence switch in to help reset the sun. The intention was to swiftly OHKO Salamence so I can claim weather as I still have a Groudon left to switch out to. My Kyogre then got highrolled by +2 PBlades while sleeping. In retrospect this was just a really poor move on my part and I lost the game as a result.

I don’t remember exactly what happened Game 2 other than Patrick playing better than me. I’m also pretty sure I got Moodied somewhere, but that doesn’t matter. Patrick deserved the win over me. Like yesterday, I started the day with a defeat.

[LL 0-1]

Round 2: Tsao Che-Ming


Big6...with Clef over Smeargle. I led Gengar/Groudon as he led Kangaskhan/Clefairy. I believe he went for Return + Magic Coat, probably predicting Taunt, but the Magic Coat didn’t matter as my Gengar Sludge Bombed anyways. He Helping Hand Sucker Punched my Gengar, revealing my extra physical bulk when it took the first hit. Somewhere along the way he got a PuP off and I almost lost because I wasn’t aggressive enough towards the +2 Kang but he sent in Groudon into my Kyogre while I went for Skill Swap Origin Pulse, knocking out both Clefairy and Groudon. He had the game pretty much locked up if he went for Follow Me + switch to Groudon though.

He led Kang/Clef again game 2, and started with HH Return on Groudon while I reveal Wisp to burn his Kangaskhan. I got some solid Eruption damage and he went for HH Sucker onto Gengar to deal ~70% while I knocked out Clefairy and used Bronzong + Kyogre to clean up.

WW [1-1]

Round 3: Anielo Iuliano


He never brought Gengar, so idk if it’s mega or not. I also can’t assume it is because both Gengar formes are viable.

An interesting take on Groudon/Xerneas, I didn’t know what to lead against this so I led Smeargle/Groudon iirc. He led Kang/Crobat and it was kinda annoying but I managed to win it out in the end thanks to PBlades miss, along with him missing Super Fang twice I believe. Game 2 I adjusted to Gengar/Groudon as he led the same. I don’t remember too much about this game except he missed Super Fang again (don’t recall it being a crucial miss though) and subsequently ragequit by slamming his DS and storming off the table.

I would normally feel bad about people I haxed out, but like I can’t really say anything about this one because of his poor attitude. Whatever. A win’s a win.

WW [2-1]

Round 4: Jiwawiyat Thitasiri


More Groudon/Xern. This one was a bit scary because of Kecleon and Meowstic. Meowstic had Safeguard so I couldn’t just burn it and call it a day, and Swagger was also not fun. For Game 1 I led Gengar/Groudon into Kangaskhan/Meowstic. Went straight for Sludge Bomb (and crit) on Kanga. He revealed Kecleon in the back, only bringing Groudon as his restricted. Kecleon was a problem as it took less than half from Origin Pulse and was dealing significant damage with +2 Sucker/Sneak/Low Kick while taking advantage of my Trick Room. For game 2 we both led the same thing, but he Sucker Punched my Gengar turn 1 while I Sludge Bomb/Erupted. Gengar lived with 1 HP and I removed both Kangaskhan and Meowstic with Eruption. He had Kecleon and Groudon in the back and I was able to take the game with the help of Kyogre. Getting tired of these Safeswag shenanigans, I led Zapdos/Groudon game 3 to try and gain a speed control advantage over Meowstic/Kangaskhan. He led Kangaskhan/Kecleon instead and had Xerneas in the back. I immediately regretted that I didn’t bring Gengar because it would have been so good against this lead. Kecleon paralyzed itself by Faking Out Zapdos, and by the time Kangaskhan was vaporized my Groudon was very low. He revealed Xerneas and my low HP Groudon + Zapdos wasn’t going to do much to it. Yellow Magic saves the day as it got fully paralyzed as it attempted to finish off my Groudon with Sucker Punch. My PBlades took down Kecleon from approximately 80% and chunked Xerneas. I still had Bronzong + Kyogre in the back and the game was won from there. I’m sorry that I had to hax to win this round.

LWW [3-1]

Round 5: Conan Thompson


I respect conan a lot because he’s more than just a meme in the community. He’s a meme that can cave your face in and show dominance. Conan plays an important role as the vgc trashtalker/villain and it’s absolutely something that the community needs. As far as battling him, though, I wasn’t overly concerned. It would be a surprise if he brought anything other than Groudon/Xerneas or some other top placing Japan inspired team. I was ready to smash his Groudon/Xerneas with my primals. Kinda.

Game 1 he led Salamence Smeargle while I led Smeargle Groudon. My Groudon took a Hyper Voice and put it just outside of KO range to OHKO Smeargle with Eruption. His Smeargle reveals Chesto and Salamence dodges a Dark Void while he put both of my mons to sleep. This put me in a rather awkward position and I couldn’t salvage it with Bronzong+Kyogre in the back. I noted that his Smeargle’s Speed is less than 95 at least. Onto Game 2

Game 2 I switched my lead around with Zapdos/Groudon. I do not remember what fully went in this series, mostly because I played by tanking Dark Voids. Goal was to leave a dent on Smeargle so Zong + Ogre can win. Endgame came down to Zong/Ogre vs Zong/Don in rain, Gravity up, and we both ended up just spamming Hypnosis at each other. My Kyogre woke up first and claimed the game with Origin Pulse. However, I think my chances were better as Kyogre can take a +2 Blades + Gyro Ball in the event that he woke up. I don’t remember if I had a Groudon in the back or not.

Game 3 was Smeargle/Groudon vs Salamence/Smeargle again. I reveal King’s Shield to protect Smeargle now that conan knows he can OHKO me. With a similar train of thought conan’s Smeargle used Spiky Shield to block my Overheat, but I had the upper hand as I successfully got the attack drop on Salamence. The next turn was something I regret terribly - this was the perfect opportunity for me to use Wide Guard + Eruption as Mence can’t really KO stuff with Double Edge anymore so if I mispredict I’d have an extra turn to fix it. What I ended up doing was Dark Void + Overheat which was really silly and Hyper Voice left a dent on the team. Not sure what happened after this, but the game came down to conan’s Zong using blind hypnosis, missing my Kyogre, but I missed Origin Pulse in return. Then I forgot to stall out my own TR turns with Protect on Groudon, sealing my chances of winning

LWL [3-2]

I was a little flustered by this loss, knowing that I had a turn to leave such a giant dent on conan’s squad but didn’t go for it. Nevertheless, I had to shake the loss and move on

Round 6: Sam Pandelis


I’m really surprised that Zelda here didn’t use some Big6 variant like he’s been running all season (except during Australia Nats). He’s running Gavin’s nats team (or would have been had there not been very unfortunate circumstances that day). Rajan faced Sam already a few rounds before and won by Smeargling him. I was told that Sam is the type of guy who likes going for the 50/50 turn 1 and that he had Scarf Smeargle. I was in for a tough ride.

Surely enough, he led Khan Artist game 1 and went straight for the side pup/switch to Yveltal. I led Smeargle/Groudon, clicked Eruption and both of them vanished. He forfeited

Game 2 he led Thundurus/Groudon (surprise!!) while I led Smeargle Groudon. I was able to maneuver the bad lead matchup but he made a great play with Eruption in the rain to catch my Kyogre switchout or something. I lost this one

For the deciding match he went right back to leading Khan Artist. I decided to go for the Eruption/DV again because I think that, if he does actually commit to staying in instead of side pupping, he’d have to go through rolls to win. In retrospect I should have gone for Eruption/Crafty Shield because I don’t think Dark Voiding was necessary. He actually does stay in and he went for DV and Double Edge onto Smeargle, but I got some early wakeups and pulled the game in my favor. The end came down to his paralyzed 90% Yveltal + full health Groudon vs my Kyogre in Tailwind. I made the grave mistake of trying to scout out his Groudon’s Protects instead of just attacking, forgetting that the game was basically 1v1 at this point, and I ended up throwing the game

At this point I contemplated on dropping, but I wanted a positive record, so I moved on

Round 7: Rachel Annand


Ah XRay...the format’s cheesiest archetype. Although there weren’t really any cheeses here. That could have been Sing/Dragon Dance Lapras, but I chose to not count for that possibility. My team has Mega Gengar and Bronzong so I wasn’t scared of her restricteds, however, she beat me Game 1 because I mismanaged my KOes and Xerneas managed to set up. Additionally, her Rayquaza had Earth Power, swiftly dispatching Gengar. There wasn’t much to remember about this set except for the part where I clicked buttons and won Game 2 and 3 because Bronzong was too much for her to handle. I knocked out Lapras with Kyogre’s Thunder to secure my positive record. Jon Hu came by to congratulate me on knocking out her “heretic” Lapras as she had Ice Beam.

LWW [4-3]


Final Scores:

Vs Xerneas/Groudon: 6 wins, 2 losses

Vs Primals: 0 wins, 1 loss

Vs Xerneas/Kyogre: 1 win, 0 losses

Vs Dialga/Groudon: 2 wins, 0 losses

Vs Yveltal/Groudon: 0 wins, 1 loss


Eliminated from Worlds, placing me 31st in the rankings (and 1 placement above the top placing Japanese wheeee). I will admit that I played a vast majority of my games on autopilot, utilizing familiarity with double primals and the fact that I’ve historically performed best by piloting semi-technical teams by just pressing buttons instead of overthinking. In other words, I spent <10s for almost every turn. On the other hand, Rajan, who piloted the same team, took the game to timer fairly often. I’d often be one of the first to finish my matches, and he’d often be one of the last. Unfortunately, this has left a fraction of my play being suboptimal and crucially robbed me wins vs conan and Zelda, which meant that I have to work on slowing down my pace of the game. I was more disappointed by messing up vs conan because beating him with double primal would have been a great personal pride, and i think I’d have the game if I had gone for Wide Guard Eruption on that particular turn.

I’m still unsure if my team is good or not, since it was a last second thing. It worked out for me, sure, but that doesn’t mean everything. I do know for sure that I’ll have to re evaluate a lot of things on the team because Wolfe’s team will be common and my team has a negative matchup against that. If I want to be successful in the events in the near future, I’ll need something else.

Despite a regretful ending, I had such a great time at worlds. Meeting everyone was a huge blast (especially Edu whose joy for the game is contagious aaaa big fan <333). For the rest of that day I focused my positive energy to cheer for Jon Evans as he by some unexplainable miracle made it super far in the tournament rocking the Gavin squad. As one of the two top cutting double primal players, Jon did us all proud by knocking everyone down to reach the finals. Except for the part where he flipped the crowd. This meant that he was denied the opportunity to give shoutouts, although Jon said he wouldn’t give me one anyways >:(. Oh well, we got to witness the birth of a new meme.

MOST IMPORTANTLY, I got top 32 at worlds using some of my favorite mons. Groudon, Kyogre, Zapdos, and arguably Mega Gengar (whom I have a love/hate relationship with). Thus, just making it past day 1 meant a lot to me. Everything means a lot more when you’re using something you really like, and I’m glad I didn’t crash and burn Day 1. Even though I consider myself fairly lucky in this tournament run, I’m still fairly proud of myself. This is an opportunity that will only happen once in a couple of years, and I will, without a doubt, miss restricted mons when they move back to the banlist in the following years. Can’t say the same for other people, of course.

Thank you Primals. We will meet again someday.

I’ll conclude my worlds experience with a paragraph from Grant

“Did I make some mistakes throughout the tournament? Yes. However, making mistakes is the only way to improve. Learning from each and every one and applying that knowledge in the future is the hallmark of any success. I cannot blame every mistake on nervousness or pressure, some were just pure miscalculations, and in others I was tunnel-visioned. These are aspects of my play that I can improve on in the future. With the Nationals format this year being all best-of-three sets and all X-2 Cut on both days, the format ensures that the best and most prepared players make it to the top. It's really hard to fluke your way through the sheer number of games, especially with them all being best-of-three. Overall, I won the right matches and played to the caliber of a Nationals Semifinalist, and I am extremely proud of my play as a whole and what I was able to achieve.”

I’m not a Nationals Semifinalist, so just replace that with a Day 2 Worlds Player.


Gonna still say that I enjoyed VGC2016 more than most people. I’ve yet to play a metagame where there are so many instances of field control on the field, and I really enjoyed having global objectives to fight over, creating a more interactive gamestate than just trading blows and switching. I can’t really explain why, probably because I’m not a doubles expert or maybe I’m just throwing buzzwords out (or I’m just out of touch with competitive Pokemon), but I really enjoy weather wars. Double Primal then naturally came to be my favorite archetype, and RayOgre was probably my 2nd most comfortable archetype throughout the season. The worlds finals involving these two archetypes made me very happy.

Of course, having restricted mons as my favorite mons allowed me to easily suppress negative thoughts of the metagame. Smeargle is still dumb and Dark Void needs to get banned. Geomancy is borked but I’ll let that one pass for a bit. I feel that these two can take over games too quickly that you’re gonna end up with flowcharted or hyperoffensive games, which aren’t fun imo. Flowcharting can also become a bad habit, and I learned from Nats that you want experience so you can pull off instinct based plays. Other than that, I enjoyed the rest of the restricteds in the meta. Groudon is arguably too strong but I think there are ample ways to counter it even if it does often require the use of Rayquaza and/or Kyogre. Groudon is a mon that facilitates various archetypes and playstyles, and as a result, I don’t mind its unmatched presence. I’m not one to care too much about individual variety - team style variety is more important, and Groudon is a good mon for the metagame to be centralized around imo.

Nerf Special Groudon though. I don’t think Special Don is good but it’s impossible to switch into for sun based teams and often creates an Earth Power speedtie coinflip vs other Groudons of the same kind. This isn’t very healthy.

One thing that really surprised me was how Wolfe managed to find a team that’s just so fitting for his technical playstyle in an overall hyperoffensive metagame. I have lots of respect for that.

I’d actually be very upset if the rules revert to 2015 post worlds till 2017 because I barely played 2015 and I don’t want to learn a meta that’s going to be gone in like 3-4 months. No thanks.


Get ready for a long list

Thank you to:
  • Danny Mclanahan (cosmicexplorer) and Scott Henrehan (muffinhead) for kickstarting my VGC experience in 2011 and teaching me doubles.
  • Aaron Traylor (Unreality) for being a great friend and a practice partner. You were also there for me in 2011 to help me get started.

  • Markus Stadter (13Yoshi37), Alex Kuhn (Hibiki), Aaron Zheng (Cybertron), and Wolfe Glick, for providing a lot of VGC content early in the season for me to learn from. It was a blast to watch the videos, and I learned so much from them. Big fan!

  • Tommy Cooleen for providing great streams for the first half of the format. I learned a ton from here, and I enjoyed interacting with you and the other viewers. I’m sorry that I had to Smeargle you out to get into Day 2.

  • Cruisers (Simon, Jio, catme, Scar, Lexicon, Hongyu, DarkPenguin, Snake, Kamz, Biosci, Amarillo. Oh and Angel) for being amazing teammates and believing in me

  • Grant Weldon (Velocity) for inspiring me to go back to running primals once more. You never directly told me to do it, but your success reminded me that I was wrong to ditch something I had a lot of comfort with. I owe my worlds run to your Nats placement.

  • Ricardo (RPIndaHouse) for discussing matchups and situations with me on twitter and for providing a great resource (top performing teams compilation).

  • Chris Danzo (Lunar) for being a great friend and also supposedly my rival.

  • Team Virginia (Yan (not sogeking), Dani, Jancarlo, SUN DUDE, Karl, Ian). I’m pretty sure I forgot people.

  • Nick Borghi (LightCore). For helping me practice and being such an amazing friend. You made worlds and Nats very exciting.

  • Conan for being the greatest VGC meme, and a source of metagame progression.

  • Team Smogon (Nails, blarajan, Porengan, kamikaze, TFC, uhhh does Sam count?).

  • Chuppa for being an inspiration as one of the most consistent Double Primal users in the country. Sorry your worlds run wasn’t as great as your other runs, but watching you really helped me.

  • Eduardo Cunha (EmbC) for being super nice and happy irl.

  • mudhiman

  • Double Primals

  • Honestly there are likely people I missed. Don’t get salty pls ;_;
The list doesn’t end there, of course. Now for the main ones
  • Rajan Bal (blarajan) and Nick Navarre (Nails) for:
    • Getting me into VGC in the recent year

    • Being the main person I bounce ideas to

    • Providing me with means of transport and a place to stay during events

    • Having dumb ideas I can make fun of

    • Ladder skype sessions

    • (for blara) for basically building my worlds team, and creating the cores for Jon and Gavin’s squad. The same core (reminder: Gengar/Zong/Ogre) also won worlds, so his meta calls have been on point in the latter half of the season.
    • Also being great friends

  • Gavin Michaels for:
    • Setting the standard for Double Primals...twice. Once during February, and once again at Worlds. You created the framework for the most fun archetype in the format.

    • I was often skeptical of how the teams functioned, but I can’t doubt the success they have.

    • Having an insane Chuppa impression

    • Also screw you for creating the team that eliminated me from worlds

  • Enosh Shachar for:
    • Being a crazy tester and being willing to test virtually anything. Most people aren’t open to creative ideas, but you always brought something fresh. Talking to you was always great

    • You gave us a lot of ideas to use for our teams. While we didn’t use them, we were often heavily considering them. You really helped with the teambuilding process, and opened us to consider that the metagame is wider than we thought. I really enjoyed that aspect and I wish that I’ll be able to repay those ideas with success in the future.

  • Jonathan Evans for:
    • I’m still utterly mystified that you got 2nd place at worlds btw

    • For being my punching bag in randbats and battle factory

    • Primal Squad

  • Gengar Illuminati (jon, me, enosh, blara, gavin)

  • Aaron Traylor for:
    • Uh I’m posting his name here again because the first shoutout part wasn’t good enough.

  • SMOGON HOUSE (blarajan, Nails, Porengan, SamVGC, kokoloko, rozes, Kiyo, CBB, CasedVictory)
Feel free to drop any Pokemon related questions, and thanks for reading! Oh and if you haven’t played VGC, you should really consider it. It’s really fun meeting up with people from all over the nation and the world!

That is all

- Jibaku
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