Tournament SCL III DOU Discussion Thread


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arcticblast. i copied this post from Fc who probably copied it from someone else


Welcome to the Smogon Champions League 3 Discussion Thread -- DOU edition! This thread will be used to discuss DOU in SCL III related topics, whether it’s about the players, general metagame trends, matches, predictions and so on. Teams, Replays, and Usage Stats can be found here.

Commencement Thread


DOU Player Cores
Dynamos - Feyy, raf, Ash KetchumGamer
Platoon - Xrn, Lunar., Michaelderbeste2
Terrors - Nails, Actuarily
Islanders - JRL, Frania
Gible - zee, z0mOG
Breakers - Meminger21, bage1, umbry
Spartans - Tenzai, Toxigen
Machines - qsns, sempra, entrocefalo
Foxes - Akaru Kokuyo, Ann
Shoguns - xqiht, eragon11145

umbry - 27.5k
Michaelderbeste2 - 21.5k
Nails - 20k
qsns - 15.5k
Akaru Kokuyo - 14.5k
Xrn - 14.5k
JRL - 13k
Lunar. - 7k
Tenzai - 5k
xqiht - 5k
zee - 4.5k
z0mOG - 4k
Toxigen - 4k
Actuarily - 3.5k
Meminger21 - 3k
bage1 - 3k
eragon11145 - 3k
Ann - 3k
Feyy - 3k
raf - 3k
sempra - 3k
Frania - 3k
Ash KetchumGamer - 3k

Power Rankings and the season spreadsheet will be linked here when those are available.
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Since this thread is empty, I decided to make enemies in the community by giving my rankings of the SCL players. I tend to value having consistency for a longer period of time rather than higher peaks and lower valleys, so I would not be surprised if some other people rate some duos in a different position than I have them in.

1) Terrors - Nails, Actuarily

I think its very hard to argue that this is not the best, if not top 3 pairing for SCL. Nails got retained for the highest cost in the pool (for a cost higher than 2nd place qsns that could get you almost any other player drafted), yet has been one of the most dominant pokemon players I've ever seen - regardless of tier. Actuarily themselves could be a starter on most of these teams as well, and was picked up for a mere 3.5k. While having an admittedly shaky season in DUU for derby after dominating in the slot for DPL, he is starting to get back into form both with his play as well as as a builder for Robjr in our SV slot. As long as they have some level of synergy with builds (I think both prefer some level of bulky offence, which seems to fit the meta and each other well), they should put up a top 2 record together.

2) Islanders - JRL, Frania

The other retain, JRL has been having a terrific year teamtour-wise. Despite forgetting that tera-ghost smeargle can switch out of shadow tag, their floor puts them at a neutral record at worst. This is not the JRL of yesteryear, he has found success working alongside other European players time and time again, which makes their pairing with Frania make a lot of sense. Frania is probably the most veteran presence you could have here (besides maybe Z0m thinking about it harder), but more importantly friends with JRL and their manager for the DPL-winning Thieves. Frania is another one of the subs I would trust more playing if something happens to JRL, which should add to the consistency for the duo. For some reason, I think Ontario is behind these players as well.

3) Platoon - Xrn, Lunar., Michaelderbeste2

NGL I was not expecting to see Xrn in DOU, and thought that the retain here would be used so they could play OU and cheap out on support options for DOU due to having another player who can help with that tier. The platoon took the opposite approach, and instead went with longtime SCL support and fellow Sp_nda Lunar. Xrn's play speaks for itself, but this pick is bolstered a bit by a (hopefully) strong start due to the work they've done together previously. Lunar was personally very helpful in getting acclimated to the tour scene for doubles after I took a few years away from mons. While they didn't play SV in dpl, I am going to go on the side of good chat presence + knowing Xrn makes a good combination. Michael is Michael, idk how this guy is at the top of seemingly everything from randbats to 2nd place VGC worlds, but I am sure they will have some ideas and insights into the meta. I hope the three of them have fun working together. Go Sp_ndas!

4) Gible - zee, z0mOG

Starter Zee has been unleashed, and with a support that is their friend + can flex into pu/ou/idk whatever gibles want, this core makes the most sense in the where the team was player- and money-wise during the draft. This was what I was expecting from the Platoon, yet this worked out nearly as well for a much cheaper price tag. Even if zee goes negative but close, that is great value from the slot, which is why it is ranked so highly in my mind. While both are primarily VGC players now, DOU isn't hard to learn at all, and I have a feeling they already have some other teams they're communicating with to get up to speed. Zee's playing is above average, which is exactly what is needed here. Z0m support also may not be S++ tier as I primarily think of them as a pilot, but the friendship bonus offsets this and my prediction for how they will do follows the trajectory of Xrn + Lunar.

5) Machines - qsns, sempra, entrocefalo

This might be the hardest one for me to rank: qsns was the most expensive non-retain, which makes sense as they have played for years in the SCL circuit. Even if last year's run did not go as planned, they have been at the forefront of the meta with teams like "kingamit is an actual pokemon", "steal something from VGCPastes" and "Staraptor + Annihilape". If TFT gets a bad patch, expect to have a fully invested player here. However, the support here is not what I would be expecting: Sempra, 5th place at VGC worlds, paired with a good builder who went for a lot of money. I am not sure how this dynamic will work out, which is why it is ranked middle of the pack, as the two of them will have to adapt to the new meta. We may find that halfway through the season that sempra becomes the starter, but I am sure lots of practice games will be ran before then. Mons is Mons however, and VGC players have been able to adjust historically if they have connections in the tier. If the two of them have a finger on the pulse for the meta and figuring out rock Ogerpon is actually viable, then the two of them can do well. Entrocefalo is also listed here, however, I believe they will be more invested in Ubers and may not spend as much time in this channel.

6) Spartans - Tenzai, Toxigen

A classic pairing, two teammates from the last SCL who seem to enjoy from an outside perspective working together. These may be the two I know the least about: both are European, and both established themselves before I started playing while managing separate DPL teams who had wildly different trajectories. That isn't to say they're out of touch, but I would love it if some older players could comment their thoughts on this pair, I rated them this high just due to the experience both have and the fact they worked together already.

7) Breakers - Meminger21, bage1, umbry

Another interesting pairing. I am super high on Memiger as a player (they were by far the hardest player I faced during OSDT, and as a result I picked them to win in the predict tour... instead of the other person who beat me who is coming up later). They have been my dark horse for a while, and seeing them as part of a 6k pick-up partnership makes me happy. Even if they don't perform that's ok - expectations are low for this pair. Bage1 is someone who I think more for some of the weird derby tiers (kinda like me w/ DUU and DPP), but they have grown a TON over the past year. I think drafting these types of players around Umbry makes sense, she is another vet who can help guide them on proper prep, scl pressure and the commitment it takes to succeed in these kinds of tours.

8) Foxes - Akaru Kokuyo, Ann

Akaru is tied with Xrn for cost with this auction, but has been more inconsistent overall, which is why I ranked them lower. While they top cut for OSDT, they had the worst opponent ranking due to dropping a few sets early. This is not their first rodeo, however, and having some experience supporting should let them put up an okay record, especially vs. some of the newer players to SCL. Ann makes sense as their support: A fellow LATAM player so neither has to communicate in English, they already likely have a good working relationship and my guess is that Akaru requested Ann specifically as their support. This draft could move up a few spots, however, it is on the costlier side and as a result has a higher chance of backfiring if something goes amiss.

9) Dynamos - Feyy, raf, Ash KetchumGamer

Team APAC! I hope you snagged memo into your chat as well. I am surprised raf was drafted to SCL, but regardless I am proud of the growth you've shown and have joined the countless other NFE players who have managed to make it to scl/spl, albeit on a different trajectory than most. Feyy is most likely the starter, however, and they seem hungry to win something on the Smogon side after coming over from the draft community. That isn't to say they're bad or that their builds are inherently fishy: after dropping the hoodra we've seen a more consistent feyy throughout their OSDT run vs the Shogun's player xqiht. I probably know the least about feyy from any individual player in the tour, but when watching replays for this there were many times I felt that their thought process was just...correct, which is a positive sign if they have good nerves. Ash KetchumGamer may also help, however, I believe they were passed teams for osdt and may not feel comfortable helping build. If that's incorrect let me know, but I consider them more of an OU player than VGC/Doubles.

10) Shoguns - xqiht, eragon11145
Someone had to be last, and in my mind, it should be the people who are going to be the most inconsistent. That isn't to say their upside isn't high, as eragon has put up above-average performances in DPL/Derby and xqiht in in OSDT finals as well, but both are about as new to the community as I am and I would not trust myself currently to be starting in such a large tour. Additionally, I am not sure which of them is piloting. Eragon has the reputation of being a somewhat wild and chaotic builder, but there are nuggets within those teams I often use within my own teams when looking for inspiration. Xqiht is now just becoming more integrated with the community too, since they are Chinese and lacked discord until very recently. I think this pairing and the dynamos are the most similar, but I think this team has a lower baseline but a higher peak than them which is why I rated them lower. BO1 building may favour them in reality while I have been considering it a downside just due to the nature of their builds, and if that's the case they may be raised as well.

I hope you all enjoyed reading some PRs, and would love it if other ppl posted their own thoughts on the pairings or invited me to their teamserver to help. I'm looking forward to 3 months from now when I can look back and realize all of my opinions were incorrect!


formerly Frania
is a Tiering Contributor
DPL Champion
lets see how poorly this ages:

1. Islanders - JRL, Frania
2. Terrors - Nails, Actuarily
3. Machines - qsns, sempra, entrocefalo
4. Dynamos - Feyy, raf, Ash KetchumGamer
5. Shoguns - xqiht, eragon11145
6. Platoon - Xrn, Lunar., Michaelderbeste2
7. Foxes - Akaru Kokuyo, Ann
8. Gible - zee, z0mOG
9. Breakers - Meminger21, bage1, umbry
10. Spartans - Tenzai, Toxigen
This is how I see the pool, btw some are low on this list mainly because I've never faced / play with them recently. But all picked players really deserved to be here without any hesitation !
1. Islanders - JRL, Frania : GO EUROPE <3
2. Shoguns - xqiht, eragon11145 : The goats
3. Terrors - Nails, Actuarily : Big legacy and build
4. Machines - qsns, sempra, entrocefalo : Can surprise everyone with unorthodox build
5. Dynamos - Feyy, raf, Ash KetchumGamer : Solid base + GoatFeyy the king of Iron Throne
6. Breakers - Meminger21, bage1, umbry : imo the best legacy of the pool, not surprised if they're better than 6 at then end !
7. Platoon - Xrn, Lunar., Michaelderbeste2 : Legacy + best pokemon ingame player of all time, tournaments priority will be the key here, do they have time to prep for SCL ?
8. Foxes - Akaru Kokuyo, Ann : Good ingame players
9. Gible - zee, z0mOG : z0mOG always surprise me when I see him play, but I don't think it will surprise all legends in this pool.
10. Spartans - Tenzai, Toxigen : Good players, I don't think DLC will suits them in term of playstyle :/

You're all free to prove me that I'm wrong ! Hope to see good match !
(Feel free to mp me if you need helper :v )
Hello, everyone! Welcome to the Power Rankings post

1. Islanders - JRL, Frania: While some might be surprised to see JRL ranked above Nails, I can confidently assert that Jose's unwavering dedication and relentless training regimen make him the most deserving candidate for the top spot in the entire community. Furthermore, Frania's consistent support as his teammate cannot be underestimated. Their shared experiences in the WC and DPL this year have cemented their understanding of each other's strengths, making them my favorite pair to secure the best record.

2. Terrors - Nails, Actuarily: Nails is a player who demands respect in the Power Rankings. Despite not being particularly active in the DOU this year, it's unjust to rank him any lower. Last year, he displayed absolute dominance with an impressive 10-1 record in SCL. Furthermore, his partnership with Actu, who could easily secure a starting position on any team, promises to bolster Nails' team-building with a more solid tier foundation.

3. Machines - qsns, sempra, entrocefalo: Qsns is a seasoned veteran, boasting a wealth of experience in the game. Despite a less-than-stellar record in SCL last year, the transition to 9th gen has proven highly favorable for him, securing a highly respectable top 4 finish in OSDT. This achievement undoubtedly positions him as one of the frontrunners to establish a solid record this year. As for his support, Sempra, much like Nails, I anticipate that Sempra will bring innovative VGC ideas that will undoubtedly surprise and impress during the tour.

4. Platoon - Xrn, Lunar., Michaelderbeste2: I don't know who will be the starter on this team; anyone can do it really well, but...

Even if Michael doesn't end up being the team's starter, I would probably rank this team a bit lower

5. Breakers - Meminger21, bage1, umbry: Meminger21 has been sounding the alarm about his prowess for quite some time, and this year, he's finally earned a spot in SCL. His skill and style of play have impressed me greatly, and over the this year, he has honed his abilities to become a more formidable player. Additionally, for this SCL season, he teams up with an emerging player of the year, Bage, who is sure to bring an added layer of quality to their builds.

6. Shoguns - xqiht, eragon11145: At the start of the year, it was evident that xqiht showed promise, but I didn't anticipate him making it to SCL. However, his journey is well-deserved. Currently, he's in the finals of OSDT, and he's delivered solid performances throughout the year. I do have some concerns about his final record, given his limited experience in team tournaments and potential adaptation challenges. Nonetheless, his teammate Eragon, another rising star who has excelled in the during year, serves as strong support and will provide him with fresh ideas and unique cores.

7. Gible - zee, z0mOG: Zee have consistently impressed me with their innovative team compositions. While I may not have been completely enamored with their recent performances, I've always enjoyed their creative approach. Moreover, the fact that they are teaming up with their good friend, Zomog, ensures a positive working environment and a shared wave, which can only bode well for their collaborative efforts.

8. Foxes - Akaru Kokuyo, Ann: It's painful to place this duo here in the rankings because I truly believe Akaru Kokuyo and Ann have the potential to achieve an excellent record in this SCL season. Their synergy is top-notch, and Akaru, in particular, is a seasoned player with extensive experience. There's no doubt that he can go head-to-head with the likes of Nails or JRL without fear.

9. Dynamos - Feyy, raf, Ash KetchumGamer: I'm ranking this player duo last primarily due to a lack of familiarity, as I've had limited exposure to their replays and Raf's preparations. However, it's worth acknowledging that reaching the finals of OSDT is no small feat, and I consider Feyy a potential threat. From what I've seen in their games, Feyy appears to be a solid and well-rounded player. Nevertheless, someone has to occupy the last spot, so I'm placing them here based on the my limited information.

I feel that the player duos' rankings between the top 5 and top 9 could vary in position, but small details, in my judgment, have led me to settle on this order. So, I hope not to upset anyone with this, as it's all in good fun, and it forward to a great season. See you in the games! ^^
SCL has finally begun! With week 1 we are finally getting a good look into the high level of building and play in this new post DLC meta. Will something new take over the metagame like Ogerpon or Ursaluna? Or will the old proven strats with the broken Flutter Manes and Iron Hands rein supreme? I have no clue, but no better time to discuss and find out than now!

Week 1 Match Ups:
SV DOU: JRL vs Feyy
SV DOU: Meminger21 vs qsns
SV DOU: Xrn vs zee
SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs xqiht
SV DOU: Nails vs Tenzai
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SV DOU: JRL vs Feyy - More experience is important in early weeks
SV DOU: Meminger21 vs qsns - I’d like to pick qsns because they have a very strong grip on SV DOU it seems (built so many teams used in DOST but their performance last season left something to be desired). Some people struggle in big team tours and I hope they prove me wrong.
SV DOU: Xrn vs zee - way more experience in doubles and just a very good player
SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs xqiht - xq looked super impressive in DOST and Akaru was one of the last qualifiers
SV DOU: Nails vs Tenzai - I will blindly pick Nails in every match up until proven otherwise. Even if he’s less practiced in this format in particular he has been so consistent for so many years

Very excited for these matches! Good luck to all.
SV DOU: JRL vs Feyy I think JRL expérience more post DLC than our GoatFeyy cause of Derby and OSDT
SV DOU: Meminger21 vs qsns Meminger have a better experience but qsns is on fire atm
SV DOU: Xrn vs zee Both are solid, I flipped coin this one :v
SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs xqiht No discussion
SV DOU: Nails vs Tenzai both good player but Nails proved in too many tours that he's godlike
SV DOU: JRL vs Feyy - JRL numbah 1
SV DOU: Meminger21 vs qsns - Meminger favored with the amazing support
SV DOU: Xrn vs zee - Zee's on fire right now
SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs xqiht - Eragon's gonna get scouted
SV DOU: Nails vs Tenzai - Actuarily has 20/20 early meta foresight and Nails only plays when he knows he's gonna win
With week 1 concluding, here are the results:
SV DOU: JRL vs Feyy
SV DOU: Meminger21 vs qsns
SV DOU: Xrn vs zee
SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs xqiht
SV DOU: Nails vs Tenzai

I am going to try to go over each game a little to analyze both the teams and gameplay of every match. I think this week showed just how deep this meta can go, and with so many first time SCL players it'll be fun to put the spotlight on them a bit and go over their play on such a big stage! If you are interested in those I'll be doing a spoiler for it here:
SV DOU: JRL vs Feyy
To start off with we have the new OSDT champion vs one of the DOU greats! JRL opted to bring a team I like to call "abuse the brokens". We see the top choices of Flutter Mane, Iron Hands, and Chien-Pao while adding in new threats like Ogerpon-Heartflame and Ursaluna-Bloodmoon. Add Cresselia as a Trick Room user and you have a pretty standard good stuffs team. There is nothing wrong with this, but its something that everyone should've tested against and had in their builder at some point. I think JRL was opting to outplay this game with good Pokemon instead of winning in the builder. Feyy on the other hand has a very unique team. Double dragon while abusing the new snowbax core and, adding double grass with a Chi-Yu tossed in.. This team feels a little all over. The idea is simple though, set up Veil and then try to sweep with one of your dragons. In terms of preview I think its fairly even as long as JRL doesn't let the dragons get too much momentum. Chi-Yu can threaten big damage too and one thing to note is that Firepon is faster than Ninetales if Jolly. Overall this match up feels more even. The speed tiers come into play this game as Ninetales basically goes down for free it feels, but long term the Firepon takes a ton of damage and is basically useless the rest of the game. This is where Feyy's strategy came into play, bring out the Kommo-o when it can safely set up and try to sweep. Funny enough after some switching the Kommo-o reveals tera fire but JRL knowing how strong set up teams are opts to use haze on Chien-Pao. Keep in mind this was after the qsns game so its not surprising to see people trying to add techs around Kommo-o and other set up based Pokemon. Despite the haze tech though, Feyy happens to get a well timed burn to remove the Chien-Pao even after activating its Focus Sash. From there Rillaboom can safely come out and heal up the Kommo-o with Grassy Terrain until it sets up again. Once the Kommo-o used Clangorous Soul for the THIRD time this match, it was pretty much over. The Waterpon ended up being follow me and JRL desperately Shadow Balled into the Kommo-o which was Bulletproof. The game ended with both dragons on the field. Overall I think the teams made sense. JRL felt like he was the better player and went with a team that he thought he could outplay with as long as he had to tools to. However, Feyy abused how strong tera Kommo-o is and honestly with a team less centered around Kommo-o sweeping was able to dish out too much damage while JRL fumbled around trying stop Kommo-o from sweeping. I think the game showed the power of Kommo-o in general as tera removes the #1 issue holding it back, its x4 Fairy weakness. Both played well and overall I think it was a solid display of a more straight up team vs something a little more unorthodox but had tools to win. Well played Feyy.

SV DOU: Meminger21 vs qsns
I have a lot of respect for both these players. qsns and Meminger have shown they can play at a very high level and definitely deserve their spots in this tournament. However, teambuilding-wise I've always been much higher on qsns than most. Add that to Meminger being known much more for their play than building and you get a game where you need something solid from Meminger or youre going to struggle at preview. I don't think Meminger ended up with something solid. The team had 2 modes, Tailwind with Chi-yu and Flutter Mane, or slow Trick Room with Ursaluna and Farigiraf while hands being the fake out glue to hold it together. I do not think these pokemon meshed well together, sharing a lot of weaknesses and relying a lot on raw power in the right situations to break bulkier teams. On qsns' side we have a solid Kommo-o set up team with Ursaluna as the secondary carry. With Meminger's team lacking Taunt on the Tornadus, this game went pretty one sided. Kommo-o set up next to Clefairy, getting 2 Clangorous Scales off and slowly sweeping thanks to the constant healing from Grassy Terrain, Hospitality, and Drain Punch. Meminger also did not lead Iron Hands allowing a free set up turn one as they were forced to bring it out turn 2, but it was already too late to really force anything. I do think Meminger is a great player and can bounce back, but in this game it showed how strong Kommo-o is, qsns's building is, and overall how great qsns is at piloting teams. Also one last note, this was the first game of the season for DOU and you could see just how much of an impact it had with all the techs you see on teams to stop set up. Can't wait to see more out of these two.

SV DOU: Xrn vs zee
Xrn happens to be my teammate, but I wont be biased for this. Xrn finds himself vs zee, one of the more hyped up players going into SCL with a strong top 4 finish in OSDT while also being considered one the best builders in SV DOU. In terms of teams, I think zee's is solid but fairly expected. It may have been because they had already won the week, but it was pretty common knowledge that they liked psyspam and they loved Snorlax, so this team was just throwing everything they liked together. It looks solid and with how strong Snorlax is atm I can see it running through people. Xrn's team was yet another set up based team, this time revolving around Moltres-G and Waterpon. There was one big teambuilding error but I'll get into that more during the game, but overall it felt that if Xrn can shut down the Snorlax then the game just ended on the spot. In terms of the game, we saw Landorus-T + Snorlax out of zee to drop an Intimidate and hopefully set up freely, while Xrn leads Waterpon + Ninetales. We see zee get into the position they wanted, as they U-Turn into Indeedee and Belly Drum up while Xrn Swords Dances and puts up a Veil. This is where the team has a building issue, as Waterpon should definitely be faster than Ninetales in situations like this to get the knock out on the Follow Me pokemon instead of going second and Encore going into the Follow Me first. However, this is where zee makes the misplay that ends the game on the spot. There were two plays that were bad for Xrn, Follow Me + attack or Protect + Trick Room. I think zee not knowing Xrn's sets thought of a third situation, Roar Ninetales. This would make sense if zee opted to U-Turn into the Ninetales to break any Focus Sash for this situation. Possibly overlooking the Encore though, zee ends up Heal Pulsing + attacking, getting Encored into Belly Drum and the game just ends. There was a little shuffling on zee's end and Trick Room does go up, but there was no coming back from that situation and Xrn ended up taking it. I do NOT think this a great showing on just how good zee is as a builder and player, and they will prove just how good they are in future weeks. I think the game showed just how strong hard set up can be, but also how risky it is too. Yes when it works its broken, but one wrong move could end the game on the spot. You HAVE to keep that set up pokemon alive and undisrupted or it is very hard to come back. Excited to see just how far setup gets pushed this SCL!

SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs xqiht
OH BOY THIS GAME. This was one of the wildest rollercoasters I've ever been on. Lets start with the players. On one end we have xqiht who is the new OSDT pick of the season. xq showed a lot of talent in their OSDT games, but SCL is a whole different beast which is why its hard to translate success over right away. They are also paired with Eragon who is still very new and has no experience on this stage either, so this is a duo that will need time to gain their footing. Akaru Kokoyu on the other hand has been around forever and has put up multiple great results.. but has had a terrible team tournament season so far. They definitely have what it takes to do well though and with Ann and, judging by the team, SMB support they have everything they need to do well. Now we talk about the teams.. I was definitely thrown off. Akaru's team makes a lot of sense the more you look at it, with new Ursaluna being a strong special attacker in Trick Room paired with double Fake Out, a strong initial hitter in Firepon and... Toxapex?? First, using Toxapex vs the Shoguns is just mean LOL. Second.. it actually doesn't seem bad tbh.. The more you think about it, Fire Fighting stabs Kommo-o had just won this week, and in general Water Poison is not bad in this meta. With Haze and Toxic too, this Pokemon might be a hidden gem right now. xq's team on the other hand.. I wont lie I don't like it. The way you deal with Iron Hands feel like its Poison it and hope you hit it hard enough later.. or maybe put it to sleep? Double Dark this meta seems pretty weird, especially one being Roaring Moon who while not terrible is not very good atm. Only thing going for it is Acrobatics being good into double Grass teams. It just felt.. off.. like if you get Toxic Spikes off then anything that's Poisoned cant be put to sleep by Hypnosis anymore. It just didn't come together to me, and the funkiness of it showed in the game. There is a LOT to unravel from this game, with both sides having shots to end the game and then misplaying it. Some specific turns like Hazing the Firepon boost away was a little weird, but those weren't too bad as they were at least getting rid of other boosts. The second Coil against the Toxapex though.. I feel xq did not know it got Haze or assumed it wasn't running it. Whatever the case, this game started out as a huge disadvantage for xq, losing Glimmora and Flutter for basically free and then having to fight with a Roaring Moon in Trick Room. Akaru did give a chance to xq when allowing the Milotic and Kingambit to start setting up! However, xq ended up taking a huge risk greeding, as instead of Protecting or Sucker Punching the Ogerpon, xq either Swords Danced again and or attacked, either way losing to a Ogerpon waking up and OHKOing the Kingambit. I know I just talked about a lot of specific turns but these were big mistakes and I think xq is aware of them and will learn from them. Its hard to come into SCL with no experience and perform well right away with the nerves from so many people watching while you're playing for a whole team. I think people underestimate just how big of a difference it is to play for yourself as opposed to having a whole team's season on your shoulders. But these are things that must be worked on if you want to win in SCL. I don't think Akaru played perfectly, but they had a solid team and piloted the team well. I think they have the potential to do big things in this tournament. xq definitely can too, but I think they need to go back to their roots in the builder and find something that will give them more even match ups. Then from there show the play they had shown in OSDT to get onto this stage.

SV DOU: Nails vs Tenzai
Last but not least we have #1 vs #10 in the PRs. Nails needs no introduction, going 9-0 in regular season last year and always consistently putting up great results in every DOU tournament he joins. Tenzai on the other hand is a big mystery, disappearing for what felt like months but still ending up as one of the starters this year. Tenzai did have a really solid season last year though, going 4-1.. BUT their only loss was to Nails so.. who knows maybe this will be their only loss too! Nails brought a very.. Nails team, solid pokemon that have high stats and have proven to be strong in the past, its just about what you'd expect fighting him early weeks of a new meta. Tenzai on the other hand brought Rain? I wont lie I don't think Rain is terrible but this meta definitely made it a lot harder to use. This the team has 2 Flying types and an Ice type for the Grass cores, and Basculegion... so there is always a way to win. I don't mind the team choices too much, but I feel Tenzai may be going a little too far out there trying to fish a win out of Nails. Volcanion, Amoongus, and Iron Hands are all very strong into Rain. Add that to if Diancie gets up Trick Room there is basically no counter play from Tenzai and they definitely pulled a rough match up. The game itself Basically showed what you'd expect early game, Iron Hands sat there dishing out damage while Nails made a big read Sporing a Rillaboom as it U-Turned into Pelipper. There was a funny turn where the Pelipper turned into a Ground type as it got Wild Charged, but that turn didn't stop Nails from slowly out positioning Tenzai. At one point a Water Ivy Cudgel went into Water Absorb Volcanion, then at another point Trick Room went up, and the rest was history. Nails played this well while Tenzai had to play catch up the whole game starting at team preview. If this is any indicator of what's to come from Nails then we will probably be seeing another dominant season from him. As for Tenzai, I think like xq, he needs to go back to his roots in the builder and try to give himself more even match ups. Again, Nails was the only person out of 5 people that took him down last year.. So this could be Tenzai's 1 loss! Who knows!
(sorry if its not the best analysis, week 1 is hard to go over and I tried to rush this one out :smogduck:)

Week 2 Match Ups:
SV DOU: Tenzai vs Meminger21
SV DOU: xqiht vs JRL
SV DOU: zee vs Akaru Kokuyo
SV DOU: qsns vs Xrn
SV DOU: Feyy vs Nails
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fantastic post, thanks for putting this up lunar :)

on the zee vs xrn turn 2: I think using Heal Pulse was an extraordinarily risky, but potentially rewarding way to avoid the play of Spiky Shield + Blizzard. I saw the matchup and thought that zee was behind - Snorlax not taking OHKOs on the most threatening 'mon on the board really runs you out of resources quickly, since zee's team dedicated a ton towards redirection, and Veil is the one of the only things in the builder stopping that. Spiky Shield + Blizzard into Follow Me + Body Slamming the Ogerpon leaves Zee in an atrocious position after taking a big chunk on Lax, while Heal Pulse would keep the Lax immediately threatening.

Obviously do not know what's going on in zee's head, and probably would not have made that risky move myself, but I can see the payoff. Thanks for the analysis!
Hi I didn't actually have any part in this but Lunar., Nails, qsns, and zee did a great recap of week 1 on Lunar's Twitch. Check it out, there is a ton of super great insight along with just being entertaining. I especially recommend new players check this out if they want to get better, listening to top players talk in depth about Pokemon is one of the best ways to get better at the game imo.

Ty all for the recap and I look forward to future weeks!
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DPL Champion
SV DOU: Tenzai vs Meminger21 - normally id predict Meminger, but Tenzai was much better in the first week
SV DOU: xqiht vs JRL - xqiht is not there yet
SV DOU: zee vs Akaru Kokuyo - we shouldn't judge zee's choke too harshly, but akaru had a good week 1 and she did not
SV DOU: qsns vs Xrn - just like in JRLs case, qsns is simply a better player and they're going well now
SV DOU: Feyy vs Nails - only the protagonist (JRL) can defeat Nails


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SV DOU: Tenzai vs Meminger21 - Not much to say about this matchup, just think it's going to come down to who's the better player here.
SV DOU: xqiht vs JRL - Despite his strong showing in odst I dont think xq is up to jrls standard of play nor are his team choices as evident from the week 1 team which made no sense.
SV DOU: zee vs Akaru Kokuyo - Fun match, zee needs a bounce back week after week 1 and should come out hot
SV DOU: qsns vs Xrn - I am on the xrn is one of the best players in the tier train, qsns is definitely the better builder but i also think that could be part of the problem for them in this matchup
SV DOU: Feyy vs Nails - Will continue to bold nails until he loses no matter who he plays against
Here are the results from week 2:
SV DOU: Tenzai vs Meminger21
SV DOU: xqiht vs JRL
SV DOU: zee vs Akaru Kokuyo
SV DOU: qsns vs Xrn
SV DOU: Feyy vs Nails

This was a very interesting week with quite a few upsets! After this week we have three undefeated players left: Akaru Kokuyo, Nails, and Xrn. Two of which were ranked 8th and 9th in the PRs! There is a chance they will stay undefeated too as none are playing this upcoming week. Something else I want to touch on is just how diverse the teams were this week (besides zee and Nails using the same exact team)! It may be partly because of players agreeing to not use Male-Basculegion, but overall this meta feels pretty diverse! With statistics from weeks slowly piling up, it'll be interesting to see what pokemon stand above the rest. Small note that after this week: Alolan-Ninetales has been brought 4 times and has a 100% win rate! Still too early to hype it up but cool to see the Snow changes seeming to make a difference for the better! Anyway onto analyzing the games:
SV DOU: Tenzai vs Meminger21

We start off with Meminger vs Tenzai! Both starting off 0-1, they are trying to redeem themselves and get that nice even record. Meminger's team is a pretty standard Hyper Offense build with a Glimmora added in, while Tenzai is running... this? I'm not saying the team is bad, but at preview you can't really tell what the plan is outside of set up Trick Room or set up Goodra.

I'd say the first turn of this game went pretty poorly for Tenzai, while being able to set up Trick Room, the cost was both Diancie and Iron Hands getting Poisoned while also having to Fake Out the Landorus. The reason this is a big deal is because Landorus basically always has Stomping Tantrum, and with no way of KOing besides a possible Ice Punch, it looks like something is going down turn 2. This is where we see Meminger's first misplay, going for a U-Turn to get positioning over damage. Yes positioning is great, but in this scenario there are two of the biggest threats to your team that you can easily KO right there. I think its easy to get caught up in wanting to gain momentum, and clicking U-Turn is typically a simple way of doing that, but in this situation always going for a knock out is more ideal in my opinion. Funny enough the Iron Hands is later revealed to be Ice Punch, picking up the KO on Landorus as it comes back in. Tera Fairy revealed on Kingambit for Meminger did seem pretty threatening to Tenzai's team, but in reaction Tenzai turns his Diancie into a Grass type. Removing Diance's Steel weakness and solid Sinistcha switching on Tenzai's side allowed the Diancie to stay on the field longer than it should've, getting good damage off and even setting up a second Trick Room. Meminger did play the second set of Trick Room turns well though, stalling well enough to get into a late game position where there was a weak Volcanion, Goodra that was +4 Defense, and Flutter mane in the back for Tenzai vs a Fire Ogerpon and a Flutter Mane in Tailwind for Meminger. Meminger ends up going for a double on the Goodra, which is definitely the right play, but with the recourses left the Shadow Ball needed to knock out the Goodra to in order for Meminger to win.. And it ended up living on only 3%. Funny enough despite all of this, the Flutter Mane on Tenzai's side ended up being booster, so depending on the moveset of the Volcanion this is still a win for Meminger despite everything. Sadly for them it reveals the Heavy Slam, locking the win for Tenzai while only having 6% left on the Volcanion, which would've fainted from poison that turn if the game didn't end.

This was definitely by fast the closest game yet, and it all comes back to the early turns. I think Meminger could have won this if they opted for a more damage-trade oriented early game as opposed to position based. It was so close but there were just too many turns they had to play around Trick Room that even with very solid positioning and resource management they still just barely couldn't squeak it out. It did feel like despite having so many turns in Trick Room Tenzai still didn't have much of an advantage long term, which may be an issue with the team building. There are threats on his team, but a lot need time to set up to get to that point. Missing a key instant hard hitter like Ursaluna may be why this game was as close as it was. Either way I think both players played fairly well, and I don't see many major holes in the teams besides the lack of initial damage on Tenzai's side. Overall good game! Side note I think Meminger is way better than 0-2, and I wouldn't be surprised to see a bounce back from here!

SV DOU: xqiht vs JRL

Next up we got another battle of 0-1s in xqiht and JRL. I personally think both these players are very solid so as long as the builds allow it this should be a very exciting game. JRL's team is interesting as I don't quite know what its trying to do. Not in a bad way, in fact I'd say in a very good way. I can see Kommo-o, Gholdengo, and even Chi-yu all benefiting from Veil being up so they can set up. The fact that Chi-yu and Gholdengo can both swap the roll of Choice attacker or set up sweeper makes the team kind of hard to read. I like it, very cool build. On xq's side we have a pretty standard Hyper Offense core with a Trick Room mode slapped on. I think Ursaluna is still solid, but its definitely a lot harder to abuse with how good the Grass types are now. With Diancie sharing that Grass weakness, you really need your HO mode to weaken those threats enough to position into a possible Trick Room clean up end game. I don't think its a bad team, just needs some pretty solid positioning or else you can fall behind very easily. One thing to take away from preview is that Fire Ogerpon and Tornadus are two of the best Pokemon for stopping Ninetales. I think a lot of JRL's strategy involves getting those Screens up, so if xq can stop Ninetales then I can see JRL's set up Pokemon taking too much damage and eventually losing the game.

Going into the game it felt like JRL went for an anti Torn Oger lead with Lando, and then Gholdengo next to it which may be a Tera that baits out the Fire move. Instead of Ogerpon we ended up seeing Flutter Mane on xq's side next to Tornadus. Turn 1 is where my Gholdengo prediction was completely wrong, as it Tera Steels and goes straight for a Choice Scarf Make it Rain while xq, probably getting baited by the possibility of Gholdengo being Nasty Plot, goes for a Sunny Day instead of Tailwind. This is a very bad trade for xq as not only do you lose the Flutter Mane for free, but you take damage on Tornadus while JRL now has Fake Out support with Rillaboom getting switching in on the Landorus slot. Ogerpon ends up coming in but with Fake Out as an option its a very safe turn for JRL, getting an intimidate off and damage on the Ogerpon. This is the one real chance xq has at momentum, with Tailwind being up and threatening a KO on either Pokemon in sun. JRL decides its time to get better positioning again, which leads to sacrificing the Ninetales to a Tera'd Ogerpon. The Chi-yu is also revealed to be the set up of choice from JRL, being Grassy Seeds. JRL proceeds to make a play I really didnt like, switching in the Kommo-o while Tornadus was still on the field. This was bad because Chi-yu is lowering the Special Defense of Kommo-o so after a Bleakwind it will go down and JRL will lose a key wincon to this game.. However it misses not one but both Pokemon! JRL doesn't end up getting punished at all, and with Heat Wave knocking out the Tornadus, and Ogerpon at -1 the position that should've been fine for xq is now looking very hard to come back from. To make it worse, xq's Diancie then gets burnt by Heat Wave immediately. Yes Trick Room gets to go up on xq's side, but with Diancie pressuring no damage, Landorus continuing to Intimdate stack the physical attackers, and Rillaboom pressuring knock outs with Grassy Glide, JRL was able to slowly clean up the rest of xq's team.

This one was a little weird.. I think xq looked pretty solid despite the first turn, while JRL made some questionable midgame plays but overall played the early and late game well. The main takeaways for me were first that xq is slowly looking better, and with another week or two to get back into form and work on their teams, I think this slot can pull some wins. I also think that JRL proved set up teams can function more normally without a ton of support like Clefairy or Sinistcha. Also liked the subtle baits in preview here, hope to see more of this!

SV DOU: zee vs Akaru Kokuyo

Here we have Akaru vs zee, our first and somehow only match of a 1-0 vs 0-1. Akaru brought a pretty cool team last week and piloted it fairly well, while zee didn't really get to play, opting to not Follow Me on a turn that decided the game right there. This game zee has decided to bring a proven team, Nails' team from THIS week, hoping to focus more on their piloting, while Akaru has a TailRoom team with Farigiraf as the the Trick Room setter. Not too much to say about the teams here. Overall I think both teams are good, they have goals and the tools to hit those goals. The one issue I can see is if zee allows Trick Room to go up, as their only real way around it is Kingambit which does not like fighting Iron Hands.

We see three Genies in the lead, with Flutter Mane on Akaru's side to round it out. zee opts to go for all set up turn 1, setting up Tailwind and Stealth Rocks, while Akaru matches Tailwind and Moon Blasts the Landous. zee ends up sacrificing the Landorus next turn and taking over half on the Tornadus for a little damage on Akaru's Tornadus and Flutter Mane. zee decides to to bring out Flutter Mane here, but overpredicts and decides to Dazzling Gleam instead of go for a KO on Flutter Mane slot, losing their own Flutter Mane in the process. There is a good part of this position though, as Flutter Mane on Akaru's side has gotten 2 speed drops allowing Tornadus and Oger to outspeed, and with a nicely timed critical hit on the Chi-yu, zee is able to pick up a double knock out. The issue with this is that despite Akaru losing two Pokemon, he can bring Fake Out Trick Room in safely and will now always get it up. As I said earlier this is the one thing zee could not allow for free, as Trick Room worked really well into their team. After Trick Room goes up, the Iron Hands reveals Close Combat, which gives Akaru a very easy KO on Ogerpon. From there Iron Hands and friends are able to clean up the rest of the game, putting Akaru at a nice 2-0 record.

I think biggest issue of this game was zee overpredicting too much early game. Landorus also felt very strong in this match up and trading it for Stealth Rocks felt like it hurt more than it helped. We saw just how strong Trick Room late game was vs zee's team here, and missing that Intimidate and super effective option on Iron Hands really hurt zee's chances. I also feel like reusing Nails' team the same week could show a lack of confidence. I think zee needs to get that first win so they can get out of their own head, because this is not the well planned play we are used to seeing from them. With that said, Akaru played this game very very well, and is looking like a top runner in this pool. If he keeps playing like the has been, and the teams continue to be solid, then I could see him making a strong run!

SV DOU: qsns vs Xrn

First battle of the 1-0s this week! On one side we have qsns, known for their top tier building and excellent piloting! On the other side we have Xrn who is my teammate so I have nothing good to say at all :psysly:. Okay I guess he is good.. Looking at the teams qsns brought a fairly standard Hyper Offense build with.. a Roaring Moon? Over Flutter Mane? I never question qsns these days but that adding another physical attacker felt a little weird here. Can definitely work, but just feels like Flutter Mane covers more on this style of team. Xrn, on the other hand, is running a SnowBax and friends team. The idea of this team was simply set up Baxcaliber while having partners that can help handle it's weaknesses, having a lot of options for Steel and Fire types. One thing to note is just how weak qsns's team is to Ice, with 4 pokemon being weak to it and only 1 resisting. If qsns lets the Baxcaliber sit on the field too long or get set up, it may be hard to play around it.

This game starts off very interesting, with Roaring Moon being in the lead but not having Booster Energy? I remember seeing this and instantly questioning if it was Choice Band, Assault Vest, maybe Covert Cloak? Whatever it was, it definitely was definitely a good mental game by qsns. Because of the lack of Booster Energy, I felt it was safe to assume this Roaring Moon may have Iron Head. Despite this, Xrn still goes for the Veil, getting Iron Headed and just barely living on Ninetales.. but ends up getting a flinch. If Veil went up the game looked extremely rough for qsns, as they would no longer have the damage output to stop Baxcaliber from safely setting up. After a little shuffling the Baxcaliber ends up in. Xrn makes a good read here, doubling the Ogerpon as it switches in, getting a free knock out on one of the most threatening Pokemon for Xrn's team. This switch felt a little risky from qsns but honestly nothing on their team safely switched into Ice and Fighting coverage. After a little more shuffling, Xrn reveals Poison Tera on the Baxicaliber and gets a KO on the Roaring Moon while it was using Breaking Swipes. At this point the only real win conditions for qsns are Heatran and Landorus, as turning into a Poison type gave Baxcaliber a Ground weakness. I felt the Tera wasn't necessary on Baxcaliber for this reason, but Xrn catches yet another switch, getting a free KO on Landorus with Icicle Spear. From here the game was basically just Xrn keeping his Heatran alive long enough so it could Flash Cannon the Tera Fairy Heatran on qsns' side. After a little more shuffling and some well timed protects on Xrn's end, he was eventually able to clean up the rest of qsns' team.

Overall I feel both players played very well here, with Xrn falling behind with an early flinch but able to come back with solid leads and good positioning with Baxcaliber and Heatran. I think qsns played well but this match up seemed rough. They already had a lot of Ice weaknesses, and then the play that really made it difficult was the raw Ogerpon switch, as it felt like one of the few solid ways of breaking Heatran Baxcaliber. With Ogerpon gone Baxcaliber was able to sit on the field a lot longer and dish out super effect Icicle Spears. It was the one thing qsns couldn't allow to happen, but they for the most part lacked the tools on this team to stop Baxcaliber from just sitting there. I expect a lot more out of both these players and I'm excited to see their future games! Also Ice Body Baxcaliber is funny and seeing it get burnt was even funnier.

SV DOU: Feyy vs Nails

Last but not least, another battle of 1-0s! Nails needs no introduction, going 9-0 regular season last year and starting off 1-0 this year! With Nails being the veteran talent, Feyy can be seen as the new talent, being 1-0 so far as well as the OSDT champion! This is a big match, as if Feyy wins here then this could be the point where people have to recognize them as a possible next big name. The match up is honestly very similar, with both having technically 5 of the same Pokemon, the only differences being the type of Ogerpon and Cresselia vs Flutter Mane. I think both are fine, as Flutter Mane is probably the best non-restricted Pokemon ever made, while Cresselia can give Trick Room support to a possible Swords Dance Kingambit. I don't think there is an edge here team-wise, which means this game is most likely coming down to play!

Both players decided to lead their Gambits this game, with Nails bringing Ogerpon while Feyy brought Tornadus. As expected, the Kingambit Swords Dances for Feyy, also Teraing into Fairy type while Rain Dance gets set up to take basically nothing from Low Kick + Ivy Cudgel. The issue for Feyy is what it means to see Low Kick from Kingambit. Swords Dance sets will typically run double Dark moves, so this is most likely Assault Vest. This means that its probably running Iron Head, and as a Fairy type you cant afford to take one at 66%. We end up seeing a good read from Nails, attacking the Ogerpon switch in while Kingambit protects. There was no Tailwind setup so there is no telling which Oger is faster, and with Nails' Kingambit pressuring Iron Head still, there is a lot of pressure coming from Nails' side. Nails instead of attacking with Ogerpon opts to Follow Me, getting KOed by the opposing Water Ogerpon but successfully getting a KO on the +2 Kingambit on Feyy's side. Flutter Mane comes in for Nails while Feyy brings out Basculegion. This turn in my opinion decides the game, as Feyy makes a big read saying Nails is going to Sucker Punch the Basculegion, so to counter it they go for a Aqua Jet on the Kingambit. The issue is, Nails just goes for Shadow Ball to knock out the Ogerpon and Kowtow Cleaves Basculegion for the one shot. I'm assuming after some calcs Nails found that Wave Crash maybe didn't get the one shot on Kingambit, which means the double attack was the best option to pick up a double knock out. After this turn it was just clean up duty for Nails, with Flutter Mane and Kingambit cleaning up the rest Feyy's team.

I can't really say anything too bad about this game from either player. Nails seemed to just have a better understanding of when to sacrifice, when to attack, and when to slow down in the Hyper Offense mirror. Games like these can be decided on a single turn though, and that was definitely the case here. Nails never took his foot off the gas, never even switching a Pokemon. This straight up style allowed him to punish Feyy's more reactive play, which may be what truly cost him the game. Its not always the case, but in a Hyper Offense mirror if you are forced to switch instead of attack there is a good chance you're going to fall behind. With this game Feyy drops to 1-1, but to be honest having to play rank 1 and 2 on the PRs and going even is a very strong start. Nails is now 2-0, the second 9-0 dream looking even more possible now!

Week 3 Match Ups:
SV DOU: JRL vs zee
SV DOU: Xrn vs Tenzai
SV DOU: Akaru Kokuyo vs qsns
SV DOU: Nails vs Meminger21
SV DOU: Feyy vs xqiht

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