I find (always) the Classic tours calendar too much shrunk.
It's difficult someone can be "on the route" on all tours after 4 rounds, so next rounds can prepare those in which he's still inside in the right way, even if he had only a week.
But first rounds are all stuck and overlapped. Also, we should consider we don't live in the same place, so our availability is "constrained" for our time zones, actually reducing the time available.
A better way to do that?
Well, we can schedule tour with an extra time (3 days?) for first 3 rounds deadlines (for BW/DPP/ADV tour) and/or postpone the start of some tours (GSC and RBY for example) one more week before. Give two weeks/10 days for first 2/3 rounds could be the right way for me.
Even starting each tour in a different week, can be useful IMHO to do that in a better way.
Well, I hope that will be next year. Finally. Now it seems perfect for those who have nothing else to do...(mumble)
So, it is my 200th post here on Smogon, and I wanted to do something special. :) As it so happens, this coincides very nicely with a post I wanted to make in this thread. Seeing as though this is the closest approximation to a general thread for Smogon Classic, I wanted to take some time and talk about my first Classic experience! Many people on Smogon have dreams of winning and achieving one event or another; for some it might be winning SPL, or it might be making a deep run in OST. For me, I've been very excited for Smogon Classic. This is the illustrious Classic Gen OU tournament that brings out many of the best players of all time. I already have a love of and passion for old Gens in Pokémon, and so needless to say, I was excited from SPL onward for this tournament.
As a really new player, I didn't have high expectations on advancing deep into this tournament. I mostly just wanted to experience Smogon Classic and perhaps face some quality, experienced opponents and try my best for the matches. I have a personal saying, which is "I live for the challenge." I actually tend to play much better in matches against players against whom I'm expected to lose. That being said, winning matches against really tough opponents is a big boost to confidence as a player, especially if you're newer. While I am out of Classic now and have been for a short while, I did manage to overcome some pretty difficult matches and win them! Over CyberOdin and Honor GSC Cup, and over Sacri and starry in DPP Cup before losing to Tony. To even beat one SPL player in Classic is amazing in my eyes and far surpassed what I hoped to get out of this Classic.
That all being said, I wanted to take the time to go over a couple of teams I made and used for Classic that worked well for me. :)
DPP Cup Round 2--mc56556 vs. starry blanket
Swampert @ Leftovers
EVs: 240 HP / 216 Def / 52 SpD
- Stealth Rock
- Ice Beam
One of the things I like about DPP and ADV OU a lot is that you can blend offensive and defensive elements to make successful teams. On this team, it has a number of important defensive backbones. Swampert is one, and it's very effective as a lead here. Not only can it set up Stealth Rock early in the game, but as a lead it can fend off opposing significantly offensive lead threats (minus those with Grass-type coverage of course), and you have Protect to scout and potentially prevent an Explosion.
When I was prepping for my Classic matches, I researched a number of sets in analyses and through replays. I wanted to track down potentially some cool sets that are solid and could have big impacts in battles, but aren't perhaps the most standard. I knew my opponents would have significantly more meta knowledge than me, so I wanted some unorthodox sets to keep them on their toes. Perhaps the best example of this I found for this team was Nasty Plot Azelf. It's a seldom used set for sure, and many would argue that Band Azelf is really what should be used, but again, I wanted that unpredictability. The goal was to get my opponent to switch out to a standard Azelf check or use Protect, and at that moment, I could use Nasty Plot. And it worked wonderfully. :)
Another such set was Sub, Bulk Up Breelom. But, this one was a little different. I pored over the DPP Breelom analysis, and I realized that here wasn't a Bulk Up, Sub set in there. Perhaps it is for good reason, but I just decided to make one myself. My thought and basis for the set was I really wanted to create a set where through boosts to Def, I could prevent Jirachi from breaking my Subs. As it turned out, this worked perfectly in this battle as well.
Hariyama is another unorthodox choice for the team, as it sees little to no usage in DPP OU as far as I'm aware. However, that did not deter me! The stats on it, after all, are impressive enough. It possesses a ridiculously good HP stat, and with Refresh, Whirlwind, and Force Palm to potentially inflict Paralysis, it can withstand some attacks and phaze opposing Pokémon out if they attempt to boost their offense through one means or another.
The remainder of the sets on the team are pretty ordinary/not too noteworthy. While this team is not perfect by any means, I really enjoyed using it in my DPP Cup match, and the reasons for the sets I described paid off.
GSC Cup Rounds 1, 2, and 3--mc56556 vs. CyberOdin, Honor, Real FV13
I built this team a little while ago for the Winter GSC OU SSNL. As it turns out, it’s become by far the most solid GSC OU team I use and one of the better teams I’ve built overall. Here’s just a brief rundown about its synergy and the role of the Pokémon and their respective sets.
Snorlax: Snorlax is a very common lead Pokémon in GSC OU, and it has good counterplay against a lot. Against Zapdos, it is bulky enough to withstand a hit from Thunder and Curse, allowing it to hit back quite hard the next turn if Zapdos stays in. Otherwise, +1 Double Edge won’t hit bulky, physically defensive Pokémon like Steelix or Skarmory tremendously hard, but in GSC OU, every bit of damage counts. In the event that one of those Pokémon switches in to absorb the Double Edge, Flamethrower is a potent move as it will hit each quite hard while they expend a move either Cursing or phazing Snorlax out. I prefer Flamethrower over Fire Blast on this set because it hits Steelix and Skarmory really hard, without being pressured by minimal pp.
Zapdos: This Zapdos set is quite common in GSC OU, and that is for good reason. Some sets run HP Water, which can also be solid, but I prefer HP Ice for this team given that it can hit other Zapdos hard while really punishing Pokémon like Exeggutor. While never desired, Zapdos can be a good option to absorb Lovely Kiss and/or Thief from Nidoking as HP Ice through Sleep Talk or through a direct move can provide a good way to chip it down continuously.
Skarmory: Skarmory is perhaps the bulkiest defensive Pokémon on this team, and it has a solid role here for sure. It provides a nice check to Curse-boosted Machamp and Heracross, two Pokémon that can present large threats otherwise to many teams. Drill Peck allows Skarmory to hit both very hard, and while it won’t hit Zapdos hard, it does at least chip it to potentially force a Rest. The combination of Rest/Sleep Talk allows for Skarmory to keep up its defensive potential and not fall behind in a Curse race should it come up against a Pokémon like Heracross or Machamp, as before mentioned. This Skarmory set also is a nice check to non-Flamethrower/-Fire Blast/-Thunder Snorlax sets. Some run Curse/Double Edge/Earthquake, which cannot hit Skarmory hard enough to significantly matter.
Golem: One of best Rapid Spinners in the GSC OU metagame, Gooem provides a crucial role to prevent accruing damage from an opposing Spike. Golem also has Roar, which is helpful to force out opposing Curse-boosting Pokémon, like Curse/Double Edge Snorlax. It is important to scout, however, to make sure Golem does not get hit hard by Curse/Earthquake, for example. One helpful tip I can offer based on my experience with this team is to use double switches intelligently to bring in Golem, either to Rapid Spin off a Spike or to phaze out the opposing Pokémon to accrue damage from a Spike on their field. Lastly, Explosion can be an effective resource to take care of pesky, hard-to-break defensive walls.
Raikou: Raikou is another critical defensive backbone on this team. It is perhaps the best Zapdos check in the metagame, yet it still has impressive Speed and SpA stats. This is a standard Rest/Sleep Talk Raikou set, but I substituted HP Ice for HP Water on this set in order to hit Pokémon like Golem and Rhydon (both of which are nearly OHKOd by HP Water due to being 4x weak to Water-type moves) and Steelix. I significantly prefer Rest/Sleep Talk on Raikou to other sets due to its ability to not have to burn Sleep turns in order to hit an opposing Pokémon.
Cloyster: Last up on this team is none other than Cloyster, perhaps the best Spikes setter in GSC OU. Cloyster’s movepool is fantastic, so this often makes it difficult to choose certain moves over others. For this set, I chose Spikes, Toxic, Surf, and Explosion. Spikes is of course a staple for Cloyster sets, and Toxic is designed to hit other Cloysters and start the clock on their ability to switch in continuously. Surf is an offensive move to also hit opposing Cloysters or just other Pokémon in general, such as those weak to Water-type moves. Explosion is helpful for similar reasons as Golem—this can break through defensive walls that may be able to continuously Rest and regain HP.
I hope these teams are interesting and might help people out! Overall, I had a stellar first experience in Classic, and I hope many of you did as well. :) I'd love to see posts similar to this one based on all of your Classic experiences!
Bonus: Here's this lovely image of triumphant Golem to spur you on through this pandemic!