Sand Discussion

Are in favor of testing Sand in UU without Stoutland?


  • Total voters
    140
Status
Not open for further replies.

reachzero

the pastor of disaster
is a Top CAP Contributoris a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
Pocket said:
It has always been my belief that Stoutland was the main reason for Sand's banishment (alongside Sand Veil hax). With Sand Veil now tucked under Evasion Clause, I want to request your consideration for testing Sand without Stoutland - basically suspect test Sand with Stoutland banned.
For several months now, it has become apparent that the UU metagame has reached a fairly idyllic state of balance. The last major change was the re-test of Abomasnow, which resulted in Abomasnow sticking around in UU, without causing any serious balance repercussions. Considering the last few months' usage statistics, it does not seem like any more Pokemon will be dropping from OU in the near future. We almost certainly have several months before Pokemon X and Y are upon us and fully playable. We have time, we know that this metagame is a stable one.

Pocket has suggest to the Senate via PM that we re-test Hippopotas and ban Stoutland. Some preliminary discussion in #genvuu revealed that the Senate is quite divided on this issue, and further discussion would be helpful.

I personally feel that Sand is fairly unlikely to be overpowered without Stoutland--it encourages repetition of typing to an even greater degree than Hail, leading to rather extreme team weaknesses; it relies on Hippopotas, which is an extremely bad Pokemon (it is hard to overstate how bad Hippopotas actually is). The abusers that are left without Stoutland (or Sand Veil) are good, some of them excellent, but I am skeptical that they are gamebreaking enough to warrant leaving Sand banned. Let's overview them.

Sandslash


Sandslash is probably the Pokemon most people will think of first when discussing post-Stoutland Sand abusers. Base 100 Attack (the same as Stoutland) isn't bad at all, but it is far, far less efficient that Stoutland in terms of sweeping for exactly the reasons Pocket mentions:
Pocket said:
Unlike Stoutland, Sandslash must choose between power + bulk and speed + flexibility. For the reason stated in #1, Earthquake is a much suboptimal move to spam than Return. Thus it would often forego Choice Band for Life Orb, which sacrifices its bulk. Even more, it would have to choose Jolly Nature most of the time, lest it wants to be outrun by Scarf Jolly Darmanitan or Scarf Jolly Flygon / Victini. This is contrary to the case of Stoutland, who can afford to spam STAB Return and run Choice Band and Adamant Nature, thereby optimizing power and bulk. Sandslash can only choose one or the other. Not to mention it cannot break through most teams without a turn of Swords Dance, a turn of which it would most likely have to sacrifice its health to attain the boost.
Cradily


Probably the most frustrating Pokemon in UU to kill when Sand is up. Specs Chandelure can 2HKO it with Fire Blast, barely. Not many other special attackers can say the same. Having Storm Drain means that Cradily can take on the Water attacks that are often the bane of Sand teams. Cradily's weaknesses include a lack of offensive presence, and weaknesses to Fighting and Ice. This is the Sand abuser I hate facing the most, but it is definitely not strong enough to break the metagame by itself.

Rhyperior


Getting a SpD boost from Sand makes Rhyperior much more difficult to kill, letting it last a lot longer. However, Rhyperior shares weaknesses with every common Sand abuser, as well as Hippopotas itself.

Omastar

Getting the SpD boost from Sand makes it significantly hard to KO Omastar even after a Shell Smash, making the attractiveness of Shell Smashing much greater. Very dangerous at +2/+2, but outsped by +Speed base 90 Choice Scarf users and up. Shares weaknesses to Grass and Fighting with a number of other Sand abusers.

Regirock

Extremely high SpD in Sand allows Regirock to wall many of UUs most dangerous special attacks, such as Chandelure. Has to choose somewhat between high SpD investment or boosting it's acceptable Attack stat. Shares the Water and Grass weaknesses of Hippopotas and Sandslash, and is weak to Fighting as well. Allows an almost free switch-in to Rhyperior, especially if Attack investment is low.

There are other potential abusers, such as Aerodactyl, but these are the ones I would expect to be seen the most often. I think it unlikely that any of these would push Sand over the top, so I would personally be very interested in seeing Sand tested without Stoutland.

What do you think?
 
Am I the only one who just doesn't like weather? My main reason for leaving OU in the first place was my distaste for the abundance of weather in the tier.
 

PK Gaming

Persona 5
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Live Chat Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
Am I the only one who just doesn't like weather? My main reason for leaving OU in the first place was my distaste for the abundance of weather in the tier.
You definitely aren't the only one. I thing part of the reason why we didn't sand for so long was that we wanted to keep the metagame it way it was. That said, UU is home to hail (which still has the unrealized potential imo) and hippopotas!sand doesn't seem that deadly as we theorycrafted, especially if Stoutland is banned.

The thought of dealing with sand abusers like omastar and cradily makes me ill though. :pirate:
 
I used to play a lot of DW UU on the Beta server on PO before Sand Rush Sandslash was legal in regular UU, and I found the Double Rush strategy of Swords Dance Sandslash and LO/CB Stoutland to be very effective, and easily broken. With only one of the two available however, and that one generally requiring a turn of set-up to perform optimally, I don't see sand being overly broken, and I think it could make for an interesting metagame.

Also, just throwing out there that Omastar was REALLY good in standard UU when sand used to be legal, I used to run Shell Smash, Surf, Ice Beam, Hidden Power Grass and it just killed shit, the SpD boost from Sand made it easy to set up. Without Stoutland, I'm thinking using Sandslash as a physical sweeper and Omastar as a special one, with the rest of the team offering support could be pretty good, but again this is totally untested.
 

CoolStoryBrobat

The hero Smogon needs, but not the one it deserves
is a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
Oh my god YES. I've always wanted to try sand in UU for SO LONG. Sandslash always was, and probably always will be my favorite Pokemon, but all preferential matters aside, I don't see how much it could hurt to at least TEST it in UU before we make any decisions on it.

However, among other negatives, this means people are gonna be spamming FEAron left and right (well, most likely not but hopefully I didn't just give anyone any dark ideas.) I never had a problem with Aron, but I know it's a general annoyance, so hopefully peeps bring their ghost-types along. Another Pokemon I could see having some kind of merit in sand would be Rock Polish Aggron. Same story as Omastar, with the SpD boost in sand (on top of Aggron's ridiculous physical bulk), setting up on something that isn't carrying a Ground/Fighting/STAB Hydro Pump is going to have to deal with it running through their team at +2 throwing those STAB Head Smashes left and right. Pretty scary, if you ask me. However this still isn't game-breaking.

In a nutshell, I say: If Hail can do it, Sand can too. Without the big fluffy dog.
 
I'd say Sand might be less broken with the stache dog out of it. Stoutland has great power and speed with CB and Sand Rush, and it has solid coverage in Return+Superpower+Crunch, making it quite deadly and hard to handle. I'm honestly torn on whether Sand should really be retested, Sandslash and Omastar in particular seem really deadly, and Sand might make the former rise from mediocrity in RU, though it lacks the Speed Stoutland had and has to run SD if it plans on being fully effective, since Ground isn't exactly a type to be locked into. Omastar seems to be cool though and it would benefit from Sand by having a smoother time setting up, but it still has to deal with the omnipresent Scarf Mienshao. I don't see Sand being broken in UU without Dog, (I love Dog, and it wouldn't matter if he were BL'd since he has no use in the lower tiers anyways without Sand) and overall I could see it being fine if hail is, since Hippopotas is a shitty Pokemon outside of summoning sand, and without Sand Veil and dog it'll be fine imo.

I'd be perfectly fine with retesting sand, and I'd probably try it out too.
 

TPO3

Never practice; Always perform.
As for retesting it, I'm really not sure. The extra Special Defense it gives to Rock-types is really good. It makes things like Raikou pretty much useless until you can get by their Cradily or their Regirock. (If you ever do.) Also, I'm not sure why the OP says that these two in particular have to choose between either bulk or power. Both of them have Curse which makes them resilient even to Fighting-types, while allowing them to hit for large amounts of damage.

If the community wants to re-test it, I wouldn't be opposed to a test, but in theory anyways, I feel like Sand would be pretty broken.
 
I listed 'somewhat opposed' just because I felt LonelyNess's point last night on IRC about testing things that are banned. That is, what's our criteria for it? How do we know whether we should test something that's banned? It's usually much clearer to test things that aren't banned, as these tests arise because many people think the subject is broken.

On second thought though, I realize that the list of testable things isn't that big. It's just BL Pokemon, Drought, and Sand Stream. It's reasonable to retest any of these things if either the result was questionable when they were tested, or if the metagame has changed significantly since their testing.

Also, I'd like to note that "Sand would make the metagame bad" does not justify being opposed to testing. This is something we would decide during the testing. I'd say that the central question of whether to test involves ban complexity.

EDIT: Didn't realize that Stoutland would simply be banned. Then, I retract what I said. I think I'd be indifferent to the test now.
 
I don't really get why stoutland would be banned, it seems sort of silly, it might be OP, but allowing a weather that was previously banned, but not letting a mon who goes from being terrible to really good use it seems like kind of a waste to let it flex it's muscles in a tier where t isn't completely outclassed in sand. Oh well, can't get everything I guess.

What I do see coming out of sandstorm testing in UU however is a rise of usage in bulky Kingdra. With pretty good natural bulk in 75/95/95 stats and a quad resist to water, it could almost function as a Latias counterpart in UU, taking only the many water types that threaten sandstorm teams. It is a shame that it doesn't have reliable recovery, but it does get rest and sleep talk, which always be paired with a powerful outrage so that it has a powerful attacking move that very few pokemon in UU resist, not to mention you aren't locked into it if sleep talk rolls it.

Edit: would also like to note that Kingdra gets yawn for pseudo-phasing.
 

Nas

Banned deucer.
Seriously, the next post asking to unban Drought without Victini or anything along those lines is going to get infracted.

There seems to be some confusion about what we're proposing here. First of all, we're not introducing any complex bans. "Sand without Stoutland" simply means that Stoutland would be banned, not a complex ban on Hippopotus + Stoutland. (Those of you who actually read the op would know this) Another thing, if we decide to retest Sandstream, Stoutland will be probably be tested as well. In the likely case that Stoutland proves to break Sand, it will be banned and we'll carry on with testing Sand without it.
 

dcae

naughty list
is a Tiering Contributor
I might not have a very long opinion, but it is rather simple. As the OP mentioned, UU has reached a time of unique stability, which is truly enjoyable. There is no exactly overpowered broken threat that has everyone cowering, and the only auto-weather in the tier isn't breaking anything. Imo this state of balance should be preserved, and not thrown out of balance by introducing a potentially broken threat in the form of Sand. Keeping in mind there is about half a year left until Gen VI and UU is really nice right now, I do not see why this is necessary.

My position on this is to not test it.

EDIT: Addressing the problem of Stoutland, not unbanning Sand allows people to enjoy their dog in peace in UU, and thus avoid any complications that might arise as a result of straight up banning Stoutland.
 

Pocket

be the upgraded version of me
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnus
First of all, thank you for the UU senate for allowing this discussion to take place publicly, and especially reachzero for posting this thread. I am going to copy / paste exactly what I wrote to the UU senate, so most of you can understand the complete picture of this request. Not to mention it holds rebuttals to a lot of the issues posted here.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It has always been my belief that Stoutland was the main reason for Sand's banishment (alongside Sand Veil hax). With Sand Veil now tucked under Evasion Clause, I want to request your consideration for testing Sand without Stoutland - basically suspect test Sand with Stoutland banned.

The 3 reasons stated for originally banning Sand:

1) Stoutland - I am proposing to ban Stoutland to BL. The lower tiers wont miss him, cuz he sucks without sand (#224 in RU and #156 in NU as per April usage stats)
2) Sand Veil - now banned by Evasion Clause
3) Residual Damage - Hail is allowed in UU now, which is a more egregious case of residual damage than sand, which has handful of Pokemon immune to it.

With all 3 reasons for banning Sand more or else resolved, I see no reason to keep it out of UU, if we can preserve an entire playstyle that UU players can enjoy by simply banning Stoutland.

The only concern that most of us have is the following Pokemon: Sand Rush Sandslash. Will it take Stoutland's place to plague UU to the same degree? To this I answer no.

The reasons why Sandslash wont screw UU the same way Stoutland did:

1) It has plenty of hard counters and checks. Ground-typing has increased number of resistances and immunities than Normal-typing. Not to mention it's considerably slower than Stoutland, and Pokemon with 306 Speed or more are faster when scarfed (such as: Mienshao & Raikou). Here are a list of Sandslash checks and counters.
  • Bronzong
  • Virizion
  • Tangrowth
  • Bulky Heracross
  • Blastoise
  • Cofagrigus
  • Gligar
  • Slowbro
  • Shaymin (physically defensive)
  • Amoonguss (physically defensive)
  • Flygon
  • Hitmontop
  • Swampert
  • Suicune
  • Porygon2
  • Cresselia
  • Dusclops
  • Jolly Sharpedo (versus Adamant Sandslash)
  • CB Azumarill
  • Scarf Mienshao
  • Scarf Raikou
  • Hail Teams
  • Manual Rain
2) It compounds the sand's weakness to Grass-, Ice-, and Water-type moves. In a metagame where Shaymin, Roserade, Hail, and Kingdra are prevalent, these weaknesses are major handicaps for a UU team to have.
  • One of the reasons why sand teams were so despised was because Stoutland + Hippo was such an effective offensive and defensive cores, with Stoutland's checks being checked by Hippo. The pairing of Sandslash + Hippo produces the opposite effect - the exacerbation of Sandslash's weaknesses.
3) Unlike Stoutland, Sandslash must choose between power + bulk and speed + flexibility. For the reason stated in #1, Earthquake is a much suboptimal move to spam than Return. Thus it would often forego Choice Band for Life Orb, which sacrifices its bulk. Even more, it would have to choose Jolly Nature most of the time, lest it wants to be outrun by Scarf Jolly Darmanitan or Scarf Jolly Flygon / Victini. This is contrary to the case of Stoutland, who can afford to spam STAB Return and run Choice Band and Adamant Nature, thereby optimizing power and bulk. Sandslash can only choose one or the other. Not to mention it cannot break through most teams without a turn of Swords Dance, a turn of which it would most likely have to sacrifice its health to attain the boost.

With the previous faults that banned Sand addressed and the shortcomings of Sandslash as a sand sweeper listed, I believe I presented enough support to re-test Sand & ban Stoutland.

I simply do not see any reason to deprive UU players from using Sand if they so chose, and thus I strongly motion re-testing Sand / ban Stoutland. It's almost analogous to banning Victini or Scrafty - you can ban these mons without affecting the metagame for good or worse, but why ban them in the first place / after they lost their edge in the current UU meta?

Thanks in advance, for any honest and open consideration or feedback to this request.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Also I strongly urge that we do not waste time testing Sand with Stoutland, since UU senators know full well of its extent in UU already - now that will certainly be a waste of time! At the very least, Sand should be first tested without Stoutland, and if Sand ends up sticking, then consider re-testing Stoutland if you all so desire.
 
I'd like it to be tested, even if I find Hippopotas to be utterly disappointing. The tier is in a right place right now, but we shouldn't get lazy because of it, this could bring some pokes such as Aerodactyl back into the spotlight, so why not?
 

ElectivireRocks

Banned deucer.
I'm strongly opposed at the idea of re-introducing sand in UU.
With both hail and sand being allowed in UU, the situation would quickly degenerate into the same envirorment we had to suffer for the entirety of RSE OU and DPP OU - namely the constant presence of residual damage - which heavily punishes every pokemon without Leftovers/Black Sludge except ice types in hail and rock/ground/steel types in sand.

Hail by itself isn't that bad because it's relatively low in usage, in fact Abomasnow's usage isn't even 5%.
However, two different weathers in the same tier means that weather wars will often take place considering that many common sand abusers, such as Cradily, Sandslash and Hippopotas itself are weak to ice, thus encouraging the usage of hail teams.
I wouldn't be surprised if the combined usage of hail and sand would get as high as 40%.

Do we really want UU to turn into a constant passive damage hell?
 
I think it would be nice to test it, Hippopotas is just a really bad pokemon so at least that's a liability (I could see an eviolite slack off/whirlwind/toxic/stealth rock set being barely usable). What made RSE OU fun to me was the fact that you could run Tyranitar + many sand storm immune pokemon that didn't take damage from spikes (aero, skarmory, flygon, ...,) and play a stall + offensive team relying on resistances. Back when I played this style it was unique, I felt like I could customize it to my own preferences and playstyle. In gen 5 (both UU and OU but especially OU) I feel like I am somewhat forced to play style [x] for maximum effectiveness. Unbanning Hippopotas but banning Stoutland (which I think is unavoidable; Stoutland would just be too good) could allow for more diverse play without severely impacting the metagame. It would be moving away from what everyone calls 'overcentralization'.
 

Laga

Forever Grande
is a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnus
Many are saying that it would be a good idea, many say it would be a bad idea. My idea is: why not at least test it? Pocket spoke of exactly what I thought of when i first saw this thread:

Pocket said:
It has always been my belief that Stoutland was the main reason for Sand's banishment (alongside Sand Veil hax). With Sand Veil now tucked under Evasion Clause, I want to request your consideration for testing Sand without Stoutland - basically suspect test Sand with Stoutland banned.

The 3 reasons stated for originally banning Sand:

1) Stoutland - I am proposing to ban Stoutland to BL. The lower tiers wont miss him, cuz he sucks without sand (#224 in RU and #156 in NU as per April usage stats)
2) Sand Veil - now banned by Evasion Clause
3) Residual Damage - Hail is allowed in UU now, which is a more egregious case of residual damage than sand, which has handful of Pokemon immune to it.

With all 3 reasons for banning Sand more or else resolved, I see no reason to keep it out of UU, if we can preserve an entire playstyle that UU players can enjoy by simply banning Stoutland.
If this were the case, and Stoutland was to be banned to BL, Sand would not really be that good anymore. Let us take a moment to think about what Sand would actually do to UU. Here is a (pretty small) list of all the things Sand would impact UU with.
1) Puts residual damage on most pokemon (helps stalling opposing pokes with pokemon immune to it)
2) Boosts Rock Type Pokemon's Special Defense by 50% (Rhyperior is gonna be be extremely good)
3) Activate Sand Rush; which only Sandslash can effectively use.

Yeah that's basically it.
One may ask this question: If sand really is that bad, why do so many use it in OU? With Sandslash even less effective there, how come it's so used? I have made a list of things it does in OU too.
1) Counters the living shit out of rain. Rain, being so dangerous, can be completely shut down when you Toxicroak doesn's heal itself or your Tornadus keeps missing Hurricanes.
2) Tyranitar is a big ass threat. Hippowdon doesn't do much but wall all the physical attackers, but TTar can hit extremely hard with the CB set, wall a lot of special attackers with SpD set, and hit for surprise damage on Ferro / Gliscor / Lando-T with the MixTar set.
3) Sand Force Landorus-I has way too much power.
4) The things it would do in UU

So since I have now argued for Sand being even less effective than it is in OU, don't you think we should give it a test? :]
 

kokoloko

what matters is our plan!
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Top Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
Okay I think it's about time I post here.

One thing I can say with 100% certainty is that I will not be allowing Sand to re-enter the standard ladder until it is unbanned (if that even happens). In other words, the test would have to be conducted another way.

Now, I'm not saying I'm not willing to test Sand at all, but in all honesty I remain unconvinced that we should. I, for one, am thoroughly enjoying the metagame we have at the moment; given that the only threat that is even remotely considered overpowered is Chandelure (and that isn't even by everyone). We have worked really fucking hard for the past ~2 years to get UU to be widely considered the best BW metagame, and as much as some of you will hate to admit it, being virtually weatherless is a big part of why this is true.

Some of you will argue that sand will get Hail levels of usage, which would mean basically nothing in the grand scheme of things... but I really disagree. While some think Hail is probably a better weather condition in general, Sand is far easier to use, and has abusers with much more obvious benefits than Hail does. This will lead to higher usage than what Hail gets. In addition, people will begin using Hail specifically to counter Sand. I estimate that upon the unbanning of Sand, we'll get around 12% weather usage. That's huge, annoying, and honestly just not worth it.

What I'm trying to argue here is basically: "Why fix what isn't broken? Especially when it will almost certainly decrease the quality of both play and enjoyment in our metagame." In all honesty, I just don't want to change (and potentially fuck up) the nigh-perfect balanced metagame we have worked so hard to achieve.

It's funny that when we all first got that PM from Pocket I was actually okay with the idea of testing Sand, but the more I think about it, the less convinced I am.
 

Pocket

be the upgraded version of me
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnus
Thank you, kokoloko, for responding. May you clarify this, though:

One thing I can say with 100% certainty is that I will not be allowing Sand to re-enter the ladder until it is unbanned.
You wont allow Sand until Sand is unbanned... Not only is that confusing, but... that is exactly what I'm requesting - ban Stoutland instead of Sand (ergo unban Sand like you're suggesting).

I am disappointed, though, that you gave me the same ambiguous answer as the time when I brought this up to you many months ago (that is, "being cautious about the change sand without Stoutland may bring"). When I tried to pursue further, you banned me from #genvuu (you unbanned me months later after prohibiting me to bring up the subject again), so I appreciate you giving sand another honest discussion in the public.

We don't know how this strategy would affect the UU meta. Whenever one mentions sand, Stoutland is always the highlight of the topic - I think it's safe to say that no good sand team existed in UU without a Stoutland (what other reason would one waste a teamslot on hippopotas for?) The Sand strategy I am requesting to liberate is NOT the same as the sand we have known before. To draw any conclusions from experiences based by an UU meta where Stoutland and sand were both unbanned is useless in the discussion.

For instance, with Hail only seeing 4.8% usage, do you honestly think that Sand + Hail would see a combined usage of 12%? Even back in June when Stoutland was allowed Sand only hit 5.2% usage! I find it hard to believe that in a metagame without Stoutland, Sand would see more than 5% usage, and it is a stretch to think Hail's usage would increase significantly just to counter a non-threatening strategy (there are countless counters to Sandslash without needing to resort to Hail, as I've already listed previously)

I also argue that Sand is not easier to use than Hail - again, this is not the same sand team as we've known before. There's no perfect dual offensive / defensive core as Hippopotas + Stoutland anymore. If you expect Sandslash to replace Stoutland's role, you will be sorely disappointed in your Sand team. I also find Hail's Ice Body Sub + Protect spam from Walrein and Blizzard spam from any decent special attacker a far more egregious abuse of weather than whatever benefit Sand teams can offer (Sandslash is a considerable downgrade from Stoutland as a Sand Rush user; there are no notable Sand Force abusers; only a select few Rock-types can actually take advantage of the specially defensive boost, and that's after significant defensive investment). Not to mention Abomasnow >>> Hippopotas.

I understand that you have invested a lot in this metagame, and you are proud and attached to the current UU metagame that you shaped. However, this drastic attachment to one metagame has apparently made it difficult for you to let go; you became obstinate to changes, even if it can potentially be a fun one. All I can ask from you is to be less self-centered, and be more open to the rest of us. The ability to accept viewpoints from people who are less biased and who look things from an objective 3rd person point of view is a quality that any strong leader possesses.

And again, I am only asking for a test, so it's not even a guarantee that Sand will stay instead of Stoutland - it's up to you and the senators to come up with that decision after actual play experience. Unless you cannot trust your senators from making the right decision, there's honestly nothing to fear.
 
While I wasn't around for the first time sand was allowed in UU, I'm somewhat surprised no-one has mentioned Cradily's other ability in Suction Cups and it's access to Curse.

Basically, being protected from being phazed out, Cradily can acquire many a boost to the point where it is simply untouchable, while resting if afflicted with status and such. (So a moveset of curse, rest, sleep talk and rockslide).

Now, to be fair, this would not be entirely unbeatable, but this would be VERY hard to remove, even moreso if it were the last pokemon standing. Stat reset moves, tricking choice items, taunt + heavy hitting or boosting along side give you a shot of beating it, but its quite the strain. For example, I cannot think of too many pokemon other than amoongus in UU which carry a stat reset move, instead of a phazing move or as their only option. Trick is slightly better, but is somewhat risky in tricking to the right target. Taunt might be okay, but outside of sableye, it really depends on number of boosts acquired before taunt is used. One's own boosting sweeper has the best chance probably, which might be the saving grace.

Or perhaps I am over-exaggerating a non-existent threat of sand...Still, most of the threats sand can throw at you seem more easily countered than this (Or rather, its easier to implement checks to pokemon such as Omastar and Sandslash).

Additional thought: I think sand is quite right to cover its weaknesses though, especially for a stall based variant. Pokemon such as amoongus and slowking patch up the grass/water/ice weaknesses nicely while having access to regenerator to offset SS damage. Additionally, they offer great support in their own right through status/phazing/stat resets.
 
Pocket, I think you're understating the effect that Sandslash will have on the metagame. I want to start by examining the list of checks and counters you proposed:
Here are a list of Sandslash checks and counters.

  • Bronzong
  • Virizion
  • Tangrowth
  • Bulky Heracross
  • Blastoise
  • Cofagrigus
  • Gligar
  • Slowbro
  • Shaymin (physically defensive)
  • Amoonguss (physically defensive)
  • Flygon
  • Hitmontop
  • Swampert
  • Suicune
  • Porygon2
  • Cresselia
  • Dusclops
  • Jolly Sharpedo (versus Adamant Sandslash)
  • CB Azumarill
  • Scarf Mienshao
  • Scarf Raikou
  • Hail Teams
  • Manual Rain
There are 22 checks/counters here, which I would agree is plenty for an offensive Pokemon. But these aren't all checks/counters. Physically Defensive Shaymin, Bulky Heracross and Jolly Sharpedo are current pretty much nonexistent, so if we're examining Sandslash in the metagame now we should discount those. Virizion and Flygon are easily dealt with by running Return as the second coverage move and Gligar loses one-on-one because EQ is pitifully weak. I should clarify I'm assuming Adamant LO because I think it will be the best pure sweeping set; Flygon doesn't matter as a scarfer because it can't kill you so you only have to worry about losing to Victini and Darmanitan, neither of whom can OHKO you (although they do come close). After SR and one layer of spikes, which isn't difficult to lay down in UU, Sandslash has very few solid answers - Honkalculator is giving me 5 Pokemon with enough usage to be UU that can take a +2 EQ or Return after SR and live to tell the tale 100% of the time. Those are Suicune, Bronzong, Dusclops, Porygon2 and Gligar. Bronzong is certainly the best answer, but it's prone to being worn down and Gyro ball isn't always a 2HKO. Gligar loses because of its poor damage output and Dusclops sucks and also loses if Will-O-Wisp misses. Of course, If you're willing to accept some chance to be KOd, Pokemon like Slowbro start to be decent answers, but some of the time they're just going to flat-out lose - additionally, they have to be in very good condition in order to check it. Something like Cofagrigus will want to switch in right away lest Sandslash be a spinner, but one LO EQ and it has no hope of beating a sweeping variant later in the match. I simply can't see it being a healthy addition to the metagame; it will fuck speed tiers, centralise the metagame around balanced teams and also fuck defensive teams over more than the meta already does by being by far the best spinner in UU.

It might not do what Stoutland did, but it's going to have a significant undesirable affect on teambuilding and composition.
 

kokoloko

what matters is our plan!
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Top Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Past SPL Champion
lol man Pocket, idk how you do it but your posts have a way of pissing me off every time.

First of all,

Pocket said:
You wont allow Sand until Sand is unbanned... Not only is that confusing, but... that is exactly what I'm requesting - ban Stoutland instead of Sand (ergo unban Sand like you're suggesting).
kokoloko said:
One thing I can say with 100% certainty is that I will not be allowing Sand to re-enter the ladder until it is unbanned (if that even happens). In other words, the test would have to be conducted another way.
Next time you should attempt to read the whole paragraph.

This is mostly because I am in no way willing to alienate the part of our playerbase that likes UU specifically because it is the highest virtually-weatherless tier. However, it is also partially out of concern for RU, mind you. I don't want to alter UU usage stats in such a drastic manner that it would cause drops that shouldn't happen on what is literally that last tier shift in BW.

Now, as for your actual proposition. There's several other reasons why I think its bogus.

1. You were one of the proponents that Stoutland Sand was not broken, so you're not exactly arguing for us unbanning something you think was unfairly banned, you only want us to bring back part of it. Why, exactly? I get that shorter ban lists give you a massive boner, but I honestly think you're just arguing for the sake of feeling like you "won" at this point.

2. That leads to this: A test without Stoutland wouldn't be thorough. This is pretty self-explanatory. If Sand were to be unbanned, I'm not just going to go "okay I'm exchanging the ban on Sand for a ban on Stoutland!" If we do this, we do it all the way. Why? because we could also end up realizing Sandslash is broken as shit (more on this next) and deciding to ban Sand Rush instead.

3. Sandslash, unlike what you want to delude yourself into believing, is not a downgrade from Stoutland. In fact, it's probably an upgrade. How in the actual fuck could you possibly believe that something with access to Swords Dance, STAB Earthquake, and Rapid Spin is a downgrade from something that could literally only spam Normal STAB moves ?_? FastFlygon made the argument for me in the post above this one. Your list of checks/counters is utter bullshit, and is, in reality, shorter than the list of Stoutland checks was back then (you know, before it got Superpower).

So basically, fuck off. I am still willing to hear from people who want to make a case for this, but those who do should learn from Pocket. He's taught you exactly what not to do.

Oh, and another thing. I want to preserve the metagame that is widely considered the best metagame of the generation, but it's not out of bias, it's because--again--I don't want to fix what's not broken. I think the biased one here is you, Pocket. Maybe instead of making useless tl;dr posts that accomplish exactly nothing, you should try to come up with a way to test your incomplete proposal that doesn't involve unbanning it on the ladder.

^__^
 

Qwilphish

when everything you touch turns to gold
I definitely agree with Kokoloko here.

I can see no positive effects by allowing Sand into the tier even with the exclusion of Stoutland. Unlike when we unbanned Hail (in which very few pokemon benefitted) Sand would completely revolutionize the metagame that we have already established as being relatively balanced. Suddenly, with only a few months before the release of XY, people must learn an entirely new metagame than the one that we already know. With Stoutland being banned, Sandslash would easily be the biggest threat in the metagame with the most reliable counters being levitators since its access to Swords Dance and EdgeQuake.

Personally, that isn't even the reason why I don't want Sand to be unbanned. I don't want for it to be banned because I dislike weather in general which is the reason I came to UU in the first place. Weather in general (besides Hail obviously) is incredibly centralizing and would create a metagame that I don't think that UU should head towards. At the moment, the metagame is in a state that is fun to play and I don't think that unbanning Sand would better the metagame and if anything it could only harm it.
 

Ace Emerald

Minimal effort with maximum profit
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Top Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
This is responding to no one in particular, but I want to address some big differences between Hail and Sand.

1: Team restrictions

One of the reasons I voted to unban Hail is that Hail is a very restrictive play-style in current UU. You can't stack Ice-types (more on that later), there are really only a handful of direct abusers (albeit some good ones), and everything else you put on the team is going to be at least a little hindered by Hail damage. Hail teams have to try hard to fight these faults, and the result is only a few different types of Hail team. Sand doesn't have that problem to nearly the same degree. Cradily and Empoleon can cover Water weaknesses while providing great bulk and support. Shaymin can cover Water/Ground weaknesses while stacking passive damage and recovering with Leech Seed. Nidoqueen and Golurk can cover Fighting types and provide hazards. All of this is done without even really opening your team up to passive Sand damage, where as Hail has to open the majority of its team to passive damage. Sand has more and better team options, even if its abusers may seem to benefit less from weather than Hail abusers.

2: Performance vs the metagame

A major factor in my vote to unban Hail was that it is shit on by the metagame. The big three of UU types are Fighting, Electric, and Fire. You absolutely need to cover these types, and Ice is weak to 2 of them. Electrics don't fair poorly as Zapdos negates its Ice-type weakness with Heat Wave, Raikou can carry Aura Sphere, and Walrein is weak to Electric. The abusers of Hail are just shit on by the best Pokemon in the metagame, and combine this with the fact that Hail doesn't have the best team options, Hail is very manageable. But Sand is a different story. Rhyperior without a SpDef boost is used on many teams for its ability to counter/check 2/3 types. Cradily is all over Electric, Swampert can handle Fire. Fighting is the best option, hitting Steel and Rock for super effective and Ground for neutral, but using a Nidoqueen or Golurk (or lol Gligar) Sand can check Fighting without even roaming into non Steel/Rock/Ground Pokemon. Put simply, Sand stacks up leagues better against good Pokemon in UU.

Where this leaves me: I can't say for certain Sand is still broken. It was before, but many factors have changed. Sand Veil was hell and Stoutland was great (though I do think with access to Swords Dance, Sandslash can be a better sweeper, even if it's a worse revenge killer). In theory, I'm actually pro weather. I think it's an interesting mechanic that provides more playstyles in theory. But I think GameFreak didn't balance it effectively and not every weather is right for every metagame. I just wanted to clear the differences between the two weathers while showing that Sand is definitely more dangerous than Hail with this post. Personally, the Sand theory I just outlined makes me apprehensive to test it, but I'm not passionately against setting up a suspect ladder without unbanning it, like we did for Hail.
 

Pocket

be the upgraded version of me
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Team Rater Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Community Contributor Alumnusis a Tiering Contributor Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnus
I think I get it now, kokoloko. It took me awhile, because usually suspect tests involve banning or unbanning suspects on the ladder, but apparently you're telling me to find another way to test it without affecting the UU main ladder. It's a weird suggestion to make, because you're essentially saying you are not open to giving sand the standard suspect treatment (meaning, you don't want the entire UU community to be involved in it), no matter how convincing the argument for testing it.

If you insist on not giving this the standard test, you can ask Zarel to make a wholly separate UU suspect ladder. Senators and qualified others who wish to vote will play on both main and suspect ladder in order to come up with a tiering decision. This will allow UU players who wish to not participate on the suspect ladder to continue playing on the main ladder.

kokoloko said:
1. You were one of the proponents that Stoutland Sand was not broken, so you're not exactly arguing for us unbanning something you think was unfairly banned, you only want us to bring back part of it. Why, exactly?
Like many UU players back then, I found Sand to be not broken (until Sand Veil was added to the picture). However, I can see a losing fight when I see one, and I was actually pushing for suspecting Stoutland instead of Sand back then, too, which was the next best thing. You obviously missed / forgotten this part, and I wont blame ya, since you're not a stalker. Banning Stoutland was out-of-the-question back then, but with Sand Veil banned, it simply makes more sense now. That's why I am pushing for it.
kokoloko said:
2. That leads to this: A test without Stoutland wouldn't be thorough. This is pretty self-explanatory. If Sand were to be unbanned, I'm not just going to go "okay I'm exchanging the ban on Sand for a ban on Stoutland!" If we do this, we do it all the way. Why? because we could also end up realizing Sandslash is broken as shit (more on this next) and deciding to ban Sand Rush instead.
If we reach the conclusion from this suspect test that Sandslash is a broken fucker, then at this point it really doesn't matter what we do next. A hippopotas team without any notable sand abuser is shit; whether we end up banning Sand Rush or Hippopotas is a trivial issue - either ban would kill sand usage anyways, and now we're back to status quo. It's that simple.
kokoloko said:
3. Sandslash, unlike what you want to delude yourself into believing, is not a downgrade from Stoutland. In fact, it's probably an upgrade. How in the actual fuck could you possibly believe that something with access to Swords Dance, STAB Earthquake, and Rapid Spin is a downgrade from something that could literally only spam Normal STAB moves ?_? FastFlygon made the argument for me in the post above this one. Your list of checks/counters is utter bullshit, and is, in reality, shorter than the list of Stoutland checks was back then (you know, before it got Superpower).
I will cover the Sandslash issue below, but seriously - that is the main purpose of this experiment. We want to know if Sand and Sandslash can harmoniously be integrated into UU without excessive centralization (aka making UU less fun?). We can theorymon all day whether Sandslash with sand support would be too much for UU or not, but a suspect test was implemented to put these theorymons to rest in the first place -_-
FastFlygon said:
After SR and one layer of spikes, which isn't difficult to lay down in UU, Sandslash has very few solid answers - Honkalculator is giving me 5 Pokemon with enough usage to be UU that can take a +2 EQ or Return after SR and live to tell the tale 100% of the time.
It may be easy to provide SR + Spikes support to Sandslash in UU, but do you know what's hard to do? Getting that SD boost while having enough health to pull off a sweep. That's what makes CB Stoutland great, because it can start dishing boosted hits from the get-go.

It may sound broken on paper that Sandslash can dish out +2 LO EQ or Return (I'd personally go with X-Scissor, though), but in reality, it's a handicap to not be able to nuke things from the get-go. Sure, Sandslash hits hard with Adamant and Life Orb-boosted Earthquake without the need of Swords Dance, but it aint sweeping, and the number of Pokemon that can take on an unboosted Sandslash drastically increases.

Not to mention that the opponent who is facing a Sandslash player is competent, too. He will also have SR + Spikes on Sandslash player's field, and Sandslash is a lot more vulnerable to residual damage, due to its reliance on Life Orb. A good player will also not be giving Sandslash free set-up opportunities without leaving Sandslash half-dead in the process (unless he is a playing a stall team that doesn't give a shit about Sandslash).

And to reiterate, we actually have common Scarfers (Darmanitan, Victini, Mienshao, Raikou, Zapdos) and Azumarill that can revenge kill a slightly weakened Sandslash (or even at max health), which will be the case most of the time after Spikes + LO recoil. Basically, as long as these mons are around, Sandslash aint sweeping. A Pokemon that can be revenge-killed by scarfers aint breaking Speed tiers (this argument was used initially as a reason to ban Excadrill, a Pokemon untouchable by most Scarfers), unless you want to use this phrase liberally.

Ace Emerald: From your post, all I see is a bunch of reasons to use Sand in UU, not why we should keep it out. Yes, Sand is good - otherwise we wouldn't have banned it in the first place. But it has gotten worse, and it is far worse than Hail. Did you forget that Abomasnow was the first to leave UU, and only after its departure did Sand become a thorn to UU's side? Granted there has been many nerfs that has led to releasing Hail back to UU (introduction of Bronzong and strong Fighting-types, the ban of Snow Cloak, the elevation of Mamoswine to OU), but so has Sand (introduction of Bronzong, ban of Sand Veil, the loss of Stoutland).

Sand does perform well versus Electric- and Fire-types, like you said. However it aint getting past Fighting-types (say hi to Heracross, Virizion, and Mienshao). Not to mention you're forgetting the powerful Water-, Grass-, and Ice-type Pokemon like Kingdra, Shaymin, Roserade, and Hail Pokemon that are prevalent in the UU metagame. Oh yea, and must I remind you that Abomasnow >>> Hippopotas as a Pokemon? Basically, I see sand more than enough checked by the current UU metagame to fit in seamlessly.
Qwilphish said:
Personally, that isn't even the reason why I don't want Sand to be unbanned. I don't want for it to be banned because I dislike weather in general which is the reason I came to UU in the first place. Weather in general (besides Hail obviously) is incredibly centralizing and would create a metagame that I don't think that UU should head towards.
- People play UU to escape the powerful weather effects of OU, true. However, weather has a far less of a foothold in UU than in OU, even with the re-introduction of Hail, as you've also admitted. Sand is no more better than Hail, and the weather summoner (Hippopotas) is shit. There are no crazy powerful weather abusers in UU akin to Keldeo in Rain. You will still enjoy the UU metagame with minimal weather effects even with Sand being allowed. Nobody cares about weak weather.

If my hypothesis is wrong, then we simply do the right thing and keep Sand out.
 

Ace Emerald

Minimal effort with maximum profit
is a Site Staff Alumnusis a Top Smogon Social Media Contributor Alumnusis a Super Moderator Alumnusis a Contributor Alumnus
Ace Emerald: From your post, all I see is a bunch of reasons to use Sand in UU, not why we should keep it out. Yes, Sand is good - otherwise we wouldn't have banned it in the first place. But it has gotten worse, and it is far worse than Hail. Did you forget that Abomasnow was the first to leave UU, and only after its departure did Sand become a thorn to UU's side? Granted there has been many nerfs that has led to releasing Hail back to UU (introduction of Bronzong and strong Fighting-types, the ban of Snow Cloak, the elevation of Mamoswine to OU), but so has Sand (introduction of Bronzong, ban of Sand Veil, the loss of Stoutland).

Sand does perform well versus Electric- and Fire-types, like you said. However it aint getting past Fighting-types (say hi to Heracross, Virizion, and Mienshao). Not to mention you're forgetting the powerful Water-, Grass-, and Ice-type Pokemon like Kingdra, Shaymin, Roserade, and Hail Pokemon that are prevalent in the UU metagame. Oh yea, and must I remind you that Abomasnow >>> Hippopotas as a Pokemon? Basically, I see sand more than enough checked by the current UU metagame to fit in seamlessly.
I agree with your first sentence. Like I said, I was differentiating between the weathers and showing Sands superior strength, not making an official comment on why it shouldn't be in UU. If there's popular support and the necessary upper support, I'll play a suspect test and leave all judgement till afterwards. But I literally spent my entire post saying that Sand is far better than Hail, and I think you're underestimating Sands playing vs the metagame. Water types are going to have a serious problem getting past Cradily or Shaymin, Ice types are stopped by Empoleon or Escavalier (which can handle Grass ok as well), and Fighting's best option against Golurk is Heracross's nonSTAB Night Slash (outside Virizion, which I concede is a legit threat to Sand teams). Look at this team I theorymonned up: Rhyperior/Cradily/Golurk/Hippo/Esca/Sandslash. I mean in the wide metagame, the only two scary things to this team are Virizion and Hail, while the normal good Pokemon are easily crushed. Which leads me to a clarification of my point: yes, sand returned would be beatable, but it easily crushes so much of the good metagame, and doesn't fair poorly against any of it. In the top 20, I'd say only Bronzong fairs particularly well against Sand (2 shotted by Esca). And while the Fighters don't do poorly, between Golurk, Hippo fodder, and Sandslash offense, they don't really do well. I mean this is my point: Sand might deserve a test in which all judgement is withheld until the end, but looking at the situation, Sand is undoubtedly a playstyle leagues more solid than Hail and with very few threats in the top 20 UU Pokemon.
 
Status
Not open for further replies.

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 1, Guests: 0)

Top