As promised in the interests of transparency, here are the minutes of the most conclusive Council Meeting on Salamence. MoP, TAY and Lady Bug were absent, and I will paste the accounts that MoP and TAY gave underneath the main minutes.
Session Start: Mon Jul 12 18:48:18 2010
Session Ident: #council
[18:48:18] * Now talking in #council
[18:48:18] * Topic is 'Why Salamence is OU: http://shaym.in/uploads/justinawe.png'
[18:48:18] * Set by MoP on Fri Jul 09 21:39:04
[18:48:19] * ChanServ sets mode: +qo Aeolus Aeolus
[18:49:56] <~Aeolus> I think I may have made a daylight savings time error in my PM
[18:50:05] <~Aeolus> but it appears we have something of a quorum here anyway
[18:50:27] <@reachzero> other than the fact its EDT rather than EST, I don't really see how it's a problem
[18:50:32] <@reachzero> I don't think anyone here is that picky
[18:50:38] <~Aeolus> i just wasn't specific :(
[18:50:51] <@ToF> im here
[18:50:52] <@ToF> anyway
[18:50:54] <~Aeolus> which always seems to be a crime of epic proportion on the internet
[18:50:56] <~Aeolus> especially here
[18:51:48] -> -+#council- did anyone receive notes from council members who couldn't make it?
[18:51:56] <@reachzero> me
[18:51:59] <@Earthworm> me
[18:51:59] <@reachzero> well
[18:52:04] <@reachzero> DarkLucario seems to be here
[18:52:07] <@reachzero> but it's nearly 2 AM for him
[18:52:10] <@ToF> dl said he wouldnt be here
[18:52:12] <@ToF> he's probably idle
[18:52:14] <@reachzero> so he left me a PM with his thoughts
[18:52:16] <~Aeolus> well at least he can view the chat
[18:52:28] <~Aeolus> I say we go ahead and get started
[18:52:35] <@DarkLucario> yeah i am here
[18:52:39] <@DarkLucario> though I am fucking tired :x
[18:52:40] <~Aeolus> I'd like to go down the list, each of you give a short opening statement
[18:52:45] <~Aeolus> and share whatever notes you have been given
[18:52:51] <~Aeolus> and then we can discuss what's been said
[18:52:56] <~Aeolus> DL, if you don't mind, let's start with you
[18:53:12] <@DarkLucario> i think reach has my 'essay'?
[18:53:15] <~Aeolus> if you'd like to paste what you gave to reach, that would be fine
[18:53:17] <@reachzero> I do indeed
[18:53:19] <@reachzero> ok
[18:53:44] <~Aeolus> let's have a paste
[18:54:36] <@reachzero> gonna paste in pieces, so it doesn't get cut off
[18:54:40] <~Aeolus> ok
[18:54:43] <@reachzero> My main thoughts about Salamence are: Salamence isn't clearly broken because it can be revengekilled (especially MixMence) without great effort and has problems against offensive teams. Though it hasn't got a real counter except for Cresselia but no one really uses Cresselia. With Latias gone there is an important check less. You can't call Salamence Uber because of single points. Many aspects together make it Uber in my opinion. I has a good Speed and a
[18:55:09] <~Aeolus> cts together make it Uber in my opinion. I has a good Speed and a
[18:55:11] <~Aeolus> cut there
[18:55:18] <@reachzero> oh
[18:55:30] <@reachzero> great SAtk and Atk, so you can play both MixMence and DDMence effectively. Predictions are usually 50:50 so you can’t always predict correctly.
[18:55:43] <@reachzero> If you predict wrong in these situations a match can be decided because of wrong ‘guessing/prediction’ because of Salamence’s huge power. Often you don’t know what set to expect especially in the Midgame. For example if you switch Blissey in Salamence to take Draco Meteor and your opponent uses Dragon Drance on the switch in your opponent will get a big advantage.
[18:55:55] <@reachzero> Additionally it has two great STABs with Draco Meteor and Outrage and with 2 further Attacks it gets nearly a perfect coverage (Pokemon like Infernape for example need 4 moves). So there is always a spot left for either Dragon Dance on the DD Set and Roost or a 4th attackemove on the mixed Set.
[18:56:08] <@reachzero> In Comparison to other dangerous Sweeper it can switch in easier because of its typing and Intimidate. Also Salamence often forces switches so with prediction it can use Roost which is important because of its Stealth Rock weakness. Because of these points I think Salamence is Uber.
[18:56:17] <@DarkLucario> yeah, thanks reach
[18:56:29] <~Aeolus> ok thanks to both of you
[18:56:32] <~Aeolus> Earthworm
[18:56:37] <~Aeolus> if you'd like to go next
[18:57:01] <~Aeolus> he is here, right?
[18:57:04] <@Earthworm> yes
[18:57:08] <~Aeolus> ok great
[18:57:19] <@Earthworm> i haven't gotten my thoughts written down right now so i'll just write them out
[18:57:30] <@Earthworm> also i have panamaxis'
[18:57:33] <~Aeolus> ok that works
[18:57:43] <@ToF> yeah if you dont mind aeolus im gonna take 5 min to just make it easier for you to read
[18:57:49] <~Aeolus> that would be better
[18:57:52] <~Aeolus> we can resume in 5 minutes
[18:58:02] <~Aeolus> if you don't have your remarks prepared, just go ahead and do that
[18:58:14] <~Aeolus> we'll see everyone back here in 5 minutes
[18:58:49] <~Aeolus> I'll notice the channel when we're ready to start again
[19:04:36] -> -@#council- Ok hopefully that's given everyone a chance to gather their thoughts
[19:04:54] <~Aeolus> if you need more time, go ahead and keep working... just be sure to review the entire log
[19:05:27] <~Aeolus> if everyone needs more time, we can wait a bit longer
[19:06:11] <~Aeolus> otherwise, Earthworm, if you'd like to resume
[19:06:17] <@Earthworm> ok
[19:06:20] <@Earthworm> just writing one more sentence
[19:06:22] <~Aeolus> the opening statement doesn't have to be a dissertation
[19:08:42] <@Earthworm> ok
[19:08:44] <@Earthworm> i've finished
[19:09:00] <~Aeolus> ok go ahead
[19:09:05] <~Aeolus> and then we'll hear from panamaxis
[19:09:19] <~Aeolus> Krack, you'll be after that
[19:10:08] <@Earthworm> At the present time I am leaning in favour of voting Salamence Uber. This is because of a combination of traits Salamence possesses which in my opinion separate it from other Pokemon like Infernape and Kingdra (who are both potent sweepers).
[19:10:08] <@Earthworm> Some traits include the high speed stat (base 100), the nearly unresisted dragon STAB in combination with powerful fire and ground moves which can easily rip apart dragon resists, recovery is a viable option against defensive teams,
[19:10:08] <@Earthworm> the ability to hit very hard with both physical and special moves, and the unusual difficulty involved with predicting what Salamence will do (often you have to pick between a Steel or a non-Steel, and if you guess wrong you lose a Pokemon).
[19:10:08] <@Earthworm> It is possible to deal with a lot of potent sweepers by cleverly switching around them using resistances, but with Salamence this is far more difficult due to the amazing coverage, speed, and power it has with often just two moves.
[19:10:12] <@Earthworm> All of these traits in combination with each other permit Salamence to eliminate key Pokemon on the opposition's team consistently enough to make me lean towards voting it Uber under the Support Characteristic.
[19:10:18] <@Earthworm> that's mine
[19:11:04] <~Aeolus> ok thank you
[19:11:13] <~Aeolus> if you'd like to share the submission from panamaxis
[19:11:46] <@Earthworm> "All these arguments floating around about how salamence is weak to stealth rock and is worn down easily or wonâ€™t last long etc. are really arguments against the offensive characteristic in my opinion but Iâ€™m sure we all here realise salamence is never really going to sweep easily; itâ€™s the support characteristic which is the problem.
[19:11:46] <@Earthworm> Salamenceâ€™s versatility and raw power on both ends of the spectrum is the problem as it has three extremely destructive sets that are all viable (DD, mix, band) and they all have different counters (well mix and dd/band anyway). Salamence only really needs one, maybe two moves to destroy a key player in your team if the salamence user predicts right anyway.
[19:11:46] <@Earthworm> Even Salamenceâ€™s presence itself somewhat allows other pokemon to â€œsweep easierâ€ as in teambuilding you have to (not uncommonly) excessively prepare for salamence (if you want one example nearly all salamence checks/counters are set up on skarm, more spikes, easier to sweep etc.) so by having to prepare for salamence in the way we have to in conjunction with its versatility/power Salamence can consistently â€˜breakâ€™ the opponents team and allow other pokemon
[19:14:05] <~Aeolus> ok thank you
[19:14:09] <~Aeolus> I assume that's the end?
[19:14:47] <~Aeolus> I'll take that as a yes
[19:14:48] <~Aeolus> Krack
[19:14:49] <@Earthworm> yeah
[19:14:53] <~Aeolus> if you'd like to begin
[19:14:57] <~Aeolus> he is here, yes?
[19:15:08] <@Earthworm> Krack has been idle 2hrs 50mins 52secs, signed on Tue Jul 13 07:24:03
[19:15:15] <~Aeolus> ok then nevermind!
[19:15:20] <~Aeolus> we'll move on to reachzero
[19:15:23] <~Aeolus> have at it reach
[19:15:33] <@Krack> im here now
[19:15:36] <~Aeolus> oh good
[19:15:44] <@reachzero> ok, cool
[19:15:44] <~Aeolus> do you have something prepared?
[19:15:50] <~Aeolus> if not, we can come back after reach goes
[19:16:01] <@Krack> yeah i need a few minutes
[19:16:04] <~Aeolus> ok
[19:16:07] <~Aeolus> reach, you're up then
[19:16:21] <@reachzero> alright
[19:16:39] <@reachzero> I'll give you what I got, then explain the rest off the cuff
[19:16:39] <@reachzero> In Comparison to other dangerous Sweeper it can switch in easier because of its typing and Intimidate. Also Salamence often forces switches so with prediction it can use Roost which is important because of its Stealth Rock weakness. Because of these points I think Salamence is Uber.
[19:16:49] <@reachzero> oh
[19:16:53] <@reachzero> that is DLs stuff
[19:16:59] <@reachzero> I must not have c/ped well
[19:17:03] <~Aeolus> try again :)
[19:17:17] <@reachzero> Although Salamence is not as obviously Uber as some of the other Suspects have been, such as Garchomp, it is clearly a cut above all the other offensive Pokemon in OU. Despite it's well-known weaknesses, such as dependence on Outrage for its wall-breaking ability and especially 2x weakness to Stealth Rock, it is nevertheless unusually easy to sweep with.
[19:17:39] <@reachzero> The fact that Salamence that Dragon Dance from base 100 speed makes it unusually difficult to revenge kill--once Salamence has gotten a Dragon Dance, only a few Pokemon are capable of stopping it.
[19:17:58] <@reachzero> These Pokemon fall into three categories: Scarf users base 100 or faster, Scizor and Ice Shard users, and bulky waters. All three of these choices have major drawbacks, the most obvious being that these Pokemon are commonly needed to check other common threats, and are therefore unusually easy to lure and kill.
[19:18:14] <@reachzero> This is especially true in the case of Scizor. This is not simply a matter of "remove (Pokemon)'s counters, and then it can sweep"--even with no support, Salamence is likely to kill a Pokemon before Scizor, Weavile or Mamoswine can switch in, and if a bulky water switches in, Salamence will heavily damage it (at worst) with Outrage.
[19:19:08] <@reachzero> In the case of Scarf users, few have the speed necessary to actually outspeed and so revenge kill Salamence--the most common, Jirachi and Flygon, can speed tie at best.
[19:19:47] <@reachzero> As such, the threat of Dragon Dance Salamence is an unusually great threat, far more threatening than other OU sweepers such as Kingdra or Gyarados
[19:20:38] <~Aeolus> ok, is that all?
[19:20:56] <@reachzero> Making matters worse, the first reaction to an enemy Salamence is frequently the wrong reaction, because of the threat of the MixMence set--very well Pokemon can stay in comfortably on Salamence, knowing that they may be outsped and immediately KOed by MixMence.
[19:21:04] <@reachzero> (is this too long..?)
[19:21:11] <~Aeolus> no, just keep pasting
[19:21:14] <~Aeolus> tell me when you're dine
[19:21:16] <~Aeolus> *done
[19:22:16] <@reachzero> As such, Salamence is exceptionally difficult to prepare for, and even extreme preparations are no guarantee that Salamence will not kill 1-2 Pokemon when wielded by a skilled player. This, I believe, is nearly the definition of the Offensive Characteristic.
[19:22:20] <@reachzero> (now I'm done!)
[19:22:24] <~Aeolus> ok thank you
[19:22:33] <~Aeolus> ToF, we'll go to you now to give Krack a bit more time
[19:22:38] <~Aeolus> begin when you're ready
[19:22:40] <@ToF> alright
[19:22:47] <@ToF> Kinda Skarmory + Blissey weak team. Machamp can beat that core, but often its paired with Rotom-H and Gyarados, which means you're not doing much. In terms of beating that core, I'd suggest running Wish + Calm Mind Jirachi over Metagross. You have enough of a physical presence on this team with Gyarados, and of course Lead Machamp, so I think Jirachi would help patch up a few weaknesses with common stall teams. Jirachi also solves your issue of defensive Rotom
[19:22:47] <@ToF> You are Breloom weak as well as someone mentioned, and after it Spore's something, its gonna get a kill guaranteed. I suggest running offensive Celebi instead of Shaymin on this team. You lose out on Seed Flare and the possible special defense drops but gain Leaf Storm and instant recovery in the form of Recover. Celebi's typing will help this team out more, being Grass / Psychic, as opposed to the just Grass Shaymin.
[19:22:49] <@ToF> Finally, you don't have a Stealth Rocker on this team! It's necessary for you to slot Stealth Rock somewhere in order to keep this team competitive. I'd say your only slot is looking like Heatran, so slot it over HP Grass probably. Celebi can switch into all bulky Waters anyway and threaten a KO with Leaf Storm. Since Heatran forces a lot of switches, setting up Stealth Rock shouldn't be a problem.
[19:22:56] <@ToF> oh
[19:22:58] <@ToF> wrong cp...
[19:23:03] <~Aeolus> try again :)
[19:23:07] <@ToF> Both the pro-Uber and pro-OU camps for Salamence's have valid points as to why it deserves its respective tiering. The pro-OU camp heavily cites the Stealth Rock weakness and overall lackluster defensive potential making it easier to revenge-kill, especially when locked into Outrage. The pro-Uber camp cites the enormous power Salamence has from both attacking sides, and the unpredictability associated with initially facing a switched-in Salamence.
[19:23:25] <@ToF> These points don't simply decided Salamence's tiering in my opinion, but a combination of things push me to the pro-Uber side. Intimidate is incredibly helpful on an offensive Pokemon with as many resistances as Salamence. Immunity to Earthquake allows Salamence to come in for free, and although it is often at the cost of 25%, the amount of switches Salamence forces allows it to Roost quite easily.
[19:23:32] <@ToF> The defensive numbers and revenge-killing mentality can be misleading, especially when playing against Mixmence without Outrage. Intimidate helps greatly against common revenge-killers such as Scizor, turning Bullet Punch into a non-ko even with Stealth Rock.
[19:23:40] <@ToF> Another major factor is the fact that Salamence has 120+ base Power attacks from both sides of the spectrum. What differentiates Salamence from say Infernape for me is the fact that often Infernape's last moveslot is variable and is chosen to deal with a specific threat while ignoring others.
[19:23:58] <@ToF> Mach Punch for example has less use on a wall-breaking Infernape, while Grass Knot is much more helpful against stall but less useful against faster hyperoffensive teams.
[19:24:06] <@ToF> Salamence's combination of moves on both its physical and special sets will damage everything, and Salamence is much better at creating holes in an opposing team than say Infernape is with a set moveset for all of its possible sets (MixMence, CBMence, DDMence).
[19:24:13] <@ToF> Abusing its dual Dragon STAB's for a basically guaranteed 40% damage on any Pokemon makes it so much easier for something to sweep late-game, especially if the opponent sacrifices the wrong Pokemon assuming the opposing Salamence is different than what was expected.
[19:24:19] <@ToF> Its difficult to play around something that has no real viable switch-ins, especially when the switch-ins have the potential of taking heavy damage even if they resist Salamence's attacks.
[19:24:21] <@ToF> finished
[19:24:27] <~Aeolus> excellent.
[19:24:29] <~Aeolus> Krack
[19:24:31] <~Aeolus> you're up
[19:25:48] <@Krack> I feel Salamence is uber because:
[19:25:56] <@Krack> It switches in pretty easy because of its many resistances and it is an immediate threat because of its mixed attacking abilities (135 Atk and 110 Sp Atk).
[19:26:07] <@Krack> It often creates a situation in which the only way to play around it is to just make a guess and the consequences for guessing wrong are far too big.
[19:26:15] <@Krack> Mix Mence will usually take down one or two pokemon and damage others which make it harder to handle other threats and roost gives it a reliable recovery move to heal for sr damage and Life Orb recoil.
[19:26:23] <@Krack> Mence also has perfect coverage so there really isnt many (if any) safe switch-ins and it has great speed so its only easy to revenge kill with priority moves.
[19:26:30] <@Krack> DD Mence can sweep entire teams with just a single turn of set up and its easy to set up because when mence comes out, it pretty much always forces a switch. Its speed also lets it tie with the most common scarfers (Jirachi, Flygon, etc.).
[19:26:46] <@Krack> and thats all i got
[19:26:49] <~Aeolus> ok great
[19:27:00] <~Aeolus> it doesn't look like we have much diversity of opinion present
[19:27:11] <~Aeolus> I believe MoP may be the sole council member who has a strong OU preference
[19:27:13] <@reachzero> mostly because MoP isn't here. :(
[19:27:29] <~Aeolus> however, I'd like to open the floor to anyone who'd like to add anything/expand on what someone else said
[19:27:41] <~Aeolus> if you don't have anything to add... just say that too so i know
[19:27:50] <@ToF> i mean mop isnt here, most of what we'd like to defend would be his points..
[19:28:19] <~Aeolus> Did anyone hear from lady bug?
[19:28:27] <~Aeolus> or TAY?
[19:28:59] <@ToF> lady bug's been in here a few times
[19:29:00] <@ToF> he was pro-uber iirc
[19:29:40] <~Aeolus> ok
[19:29:43] <~Aeolus> here's what i'm going to do
[19:29:48] <~Aeolus> I'm going to send this log out to everyone
[19:29:53] <~Aeolus> so that the people who weren't here can review it
[19:30:03] <@reachzero> ok
[19:30:08] <~Aeolus> do you guys have a preference on whether or not it goes public?
[19:30:18] <@ToF> nope i dont mind
[19:30:21] <@reachzero> I'm fine with it, personally
[19:30:26] <~Aeolus> It is essentially completely dependent on all nine of you keeping it hush if you want privacy
[19:30:26] <@DarkLucario> yeah same
[19:30:28] <@Earthworm> i don't mind
[19:30:30] <~Aeolus> and that isnt likely
[19:30:31] <~Aeolus> ok good
[19:30:32] <@Krack> im wih it
[19:30:38] <@Krack> im fine with it*
[19:30:43] <~Aeolus> because i'm sure it will be leaked by someone
[19:30:50] <~Aeolus> 11 is just too big of a number
[19:31:04] <~Aeolus> if that's all, then i'll go ahead and adjourn the meeting
[19:31:14] <~Aeolus> the thread is currently posted
[19:31:24] <~Aeolus> but locked
[19:31:48] <~Aeolus> once everyone has had a chance to view the log here
[19:31:50] <~Aeolus> i'll open it
[19:31:53] <~Aeolus> and we'll get a result
[19:31:59] <~Aeolus> thanks everybody
[19:32:13] <@Earthworm> it sucks that mop didn't turn up
[19:32:25] <@ToF> yeah mop would have made it more entertaining...
[19:32:31] <~Aeolus> that is part of the reason i'm leaving it closed
[19:32:47] <~Aeolus> i'm going to encourage a "reply all chain" to this log i send out
[19:32:53] <~Aeolus> so MoP can have his say then
[19:33:31] <@ToF> alright thanks for running this
[19:33:37] <@Earthworm> yeah
[19:33:41] <@Earthworm> thanks
[19:33:45] <@ToF> much more time efficient than the old way
[19:33:53] <@Earthworm> this has been much better than the old system imo
[19:33:58] <~Aeolus> i think so
[19:34:02] <@DarkLucario> yeah i agree
Session Close: Mon Jul 12 19:34:25 2010
Salamence is powerful yes, and Salamence does have an easier time switching in on some Pokemon where as it's similar offensive partners such as Infernape and Dragonite arguably can't. However, what everyone is missing is the IMPACT that Salamence has on the metagame. You've all played OU and Suspect with and without Salamence. When you play Suspect, you never have to worry about Salamence, but the second you accidentally didn't change the dropdown to Suspect and face a Salamence, you literally think, "Oh fucking shit." Do you ever get that feeling while playing OU? Now look at the metagames in each ladder. How is suspect not stale and bland? Everyone uses the exact same thing. Absolutely the same. It feels like RBY how there's only 12 useable poke. I can build a random bullshit team based on this criteria: Pick fire poke (Infernape/Heatran), pick bulky water (Suicune/Gyarados/Vaporeon/Swampert), pick ghost (Gengar/Rotom-w), random lead Poke, pick grass poke (Celebi/Shaymin) and one of the Dragons. Every single team is like that. There is no variety in this metagame. I mean most of you play UU right? Isn't UU right now at it's peak? UU right now is what OU is right now. There is no overly powerful threat, no one thing to surround your entire team around to stop a la Raikou for UU and Latias for OU. You actually have to play. You do not autopilot battles. Execution is part of Pokemon. You want to ban Salamence because you're lazy. You don't want to think about the risks thoroughly. You don't want to play the game of Pokemon, you just want to be able to counter everything and have a solid switch in into each and every threat, which isn't even possible. And Salamence is the scapegoat for it all. Salamence hits hard and sets up other users. Guess what, so does Infernape, Tyranitar, Gengar, Dragonite, Kingdra, etc etc etc. They all have easy switch in's on stuff as well. They will take down a single Poke such as Mence does, yet Mence takes all the blame? There is no logical reason why Mence should be considered uber other than "i want pokemon to be easier.' Absolutely none at all. Salamence doesn't make the game 'unfun.' It isn't based on 20% luck of outright winning. It's all about risk and reward. So what Salamence fires off Draco Meteor? That's a cost you might have to pay having a -2 spatk Pokemon in to something they set up on. So what if it Outraged? By the time you bring out Mence and try to pull off a sweep, they might still have an Agility Empoleon or Metagross in the wings and hell you might get swept. You have to play Pokemon by eliminating threats WITH YOUR POKEMON, not with BANS. This time, we literally are going to ban 'the next powerful thing.'
I will be voting Salamence uber. The combination of its versatility, ease of use, and raw power are unhealthy for the metagame and make it too powerful for standard play.
Since Uber is the majority opinion, it does not seem particularly important to post my similar opinion; I will say that I my thoughts are very similar to those of reachzero. I would also like to add this point of his:
<@reachzero> These Pokemon fall into three categories: Scarf users base 100 or faster, Scizor and Ice Shard users, and bulky waters. All three of these choices have major drawbacks, the most obvious being that these Pokemon are commonly needed to check other common threats, and are therefore unusually easy to lure and kill.
All of these categories of Pokemon are extremely easy to set up on (with the exception of Ice Shard users, which are generally subpar anyway). The ease of setting up only perpetuates a heavily offensive metagame. Looking at the most recent statistics, the only Pokemon out of the top 10 which is primarily used as a defensive pokemon is Rotom-A (Gyarados runs Adamant or Jolly 90% of the time; Recover is now only the 5th most common move on Starmie). It seems intuitive that a healthy metagame should have somewhat of a balance of team types. My experience on the OU ladder has been the opposite: the vast majority of teams are heavily offensive. While removing Salamence will likely not fix the problem entirely, it will a step in the right direction by removing a powerful anti-defensive pokemon and discouraging the use of other offensive pokemon.