Re: King’s Rock (and other “luck items”)

Eo Ut Mortus

Elodin Smells
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It is a bit strange to me that the council held a binding vote to decide the state of King's Rock. It's not like the council holds binding votes when deciding whether or not to suspect Pokemon. Your hands are tied if you commit to no suspect, and upcoming metagame shifts completely invalidate that stance. And it's clear that nobody has an idea of what constitutes an acceptable timeframe for conducting a revote. I don't think these votes should be conducted without the structure necessary to support them, and that includes not only an adjustment of the percentage required to pass them, but also the conditions under which they can (should) be conducted, the conditions/timeline for holding a revote, and the conditions under which an individual vote can be considered valid or invalid. Alternatively, just don't conduct these internal council votes (or adopt a system like the one peng outlined); as long as council members are complaining about their own peers voting "incorrectly," then the idea that they can apply our tiering philosophy more capably than the average voter seems to hold less weight.

That aside, I know these are less topical issues, but I think they should be addressed. Bringing up National Dex (a literal mod), Monotype, and BW (an old gen that has historically been tiered inconsistently to CG OU) as some sort of meaningful precedent is ridiculous and makes the ban argument look like a joke. These arguments have no place here. Also, as I said in my survey submission, mandating a yes/no response to the King's Rock question without providing an option for abstention in order to complete any of the survey was inappropriate. In general, the survey results should not be used in any official capacity as long as you cannot verify the true identity of submissions. From my time on the council, I know there was very little done to verify that people submitting were truly who they claimed to be, and I personally uncovered one case where someone submitted under the guise of another (qualified) user. I know people don't care about this stuff as much as King's Rock, but this rubbed me the wrong way, and I had to call it out.
 

Finchinator

You're so golden
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OU & NU Leader
Alternatively, just don't conduct these internal council votes (or adopt a system like the one peng outlined); as long as council members are complaining about their own peers voting "incorrectly," then the idea that they can apply our tiering philosophy more capably than the average voter seems to hold less weight.
Agree with this bit entirely. The only time the council should be voting is on quickbans directly after releases and what we did was not proper. The initial vote was a misstep and it largely falls on my shoulders for rushing it for the sake of getting a resolution -- I apologize for that. It was a grey area and we should have found a better solution. I need to be better than this.

As for the surveys, they have been used this way in every tier, including OU, for a while now. OU, UU, RU, and NU all use surveys. The results are NOT used as the sole decision makers because of what you say -- they are at the mercy of people being who they say they are and they are informal -- and the council input is still very important in the entire process, but it has been a way for the council to stay in-touch with the pulse of the playerbases. I feel the surveys have been a massive success to OU. The council has virtually no transparency last generation, but now I have been able to share our discussions through council minutes and the community has been able to share their thoughts through the surveys. I quite like this infrastructure for all of the tiers I mentioned and have firsthand success with it in OU and NU.
Also, as I said in my survey submission, mandating a yes/no response to the King's Rock question without providing an option for abstention in order to complete any of the survey was inappropriate.
Yea, we can absolutely make this change moving forward. Thank you for pointing it out in your response and again here.
 

Finchinator

You're so golden
is a Tournament Directoris a Top Social Media Contributoris a Community Leaderis a Community Contributoris a Live Chat Contributoris a Top Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Top Smogon Media Contributoris a Battle Simulator Moderatoris a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Past WCoP Championis a former Tournament Circuit Champion
OU & NU Leader
At long last, we have a conclusion to the King's Rock saga in SS OU. After speaking with the SS OU tiering council, SS OU tiering leader, and Smogon tiering administrator, King's Rock is now banned from SS OU.

While I would like to keep this post on the briefer side as every argument has been exhausted numerous times over across the last five pages, I would like to note a few important pieces of information that factored into this decision:
  • We received 86% support among qualified survey respondents
    • This is not sufficient alone, but such a strong majority absolutely prompted further council discussion and review with leadership
    • It was clear the prior vote was insufficient given how a very small minority of the playerbase -- 7 councilmen -- conflicted with the opinion of the larger playerbase
      • On top of this, even the overall playerbase had a majority of players supporting a ban in the survey
  • There was less certainty among councilmen, leadership, and administration that the result of the past council vote was truly reflective of the metagame
    • Council size was something discussed
      • We only had 7 members, which is the lowest it has been in recent memory and not necessarily representative of the full playerbase
      • It is likely we look to expand the council moving forward in order to combat it as the status quo is insufficient
    • Some councilmen who voted to keep King's Rock ultimately were content banning it
    • The support throughout the community was discussed
      • We received a great deal of posts arguing for King's Rock being banned
      • Again: the survey results we discussed in the prior point
      • I received dozens of messages expressing concern about the outcome of the initial vote, the result of the initial vote, the preceent it set, etc.
  • The presence of King's Rock in the metagame is not one we can underplay in good faith
    • Players have consistently discussed this topic throughout the generation
    • The topic has gained greater traction in recent months, especially with this thread being present
      • Cloyster's usage has doubled over the last couple of months
      • It currently sees more usage than: Blissey, Scizor, Zeraora, Zapdos, Slowbro, and Slowking in SS OU
        • OLT has done a great job proving how effective and disruptive King's Rock strategies can be
Ultimately, we have discussed this matter within the thread, through a public survey, internally among councilmen, and finally with the community tiering administrator. The consensus is that there is widespread community support for banning King's Rock from SS OU. We intend to improve our process and increase the size of the council moving forward in order and I take firsthand responsibility for any errors leading up to this.

Tagging Marty and Kris to implement the ban of King's Rock in SS OU.
 
I have asked for this thread to be unlocked. The SS OU Council has banned Evasion a few days ago.

My question is: Why hasn't this done in every tier for one and good? Why does the premier competitive Pokémon online community keep allowing items like Quick Claw or Bright Powder to be used, when they add nothing but negatives? SPL starts in one week, more than enough time to get rid of all the uncompetitive garbage that this game still has to offer.

There's not really much else to say, thanks for reading.
 
re: BW

Banning brightpowder is a direct follow up from king’s rock AND sand veil bans. We got rid of a “luck item” and an evasion ability. So, surely the evasion item can be done away with, unless you want to ban cloyster instead of king’s rock and free sand veil.

On that note, there’s also no reason not to get rid of quick claw and co once you establish king’s rock as undesirable.

re: Other Tiers

I disagree with it but it makes sense to try to keep king’s rock and quick claw allowed. That said, we already have evasion clause in place and half the tiers at least have sand veil banned too. There is legitimately 0 reason to keep brightpowder.

tl;dr

Brightpowder needs to be banned from all gens except MAYBE gsc because they haven’t touched evasion abilities (they don’t exist). Every other tier realistically should ban it. King’s rock / quick claw may be debated but they need to go from bw unless cloyster is banned instead.

Have a peaceful new year
 

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