Smogon Simple Questions & Suggestions Thread

Quite Quiet

you cannot kill the innocent, you can only kill me
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TFP Leader
Welcome to Smogon, the premier competitive battling Pokemon website! If you're new to the forums or competitive battling in general and looking for help on how things work around here, feel free to ask any questions you have in this thread.

Please keep in mind that this is not an introduction thread, so do include relevant queries in your posts. You're more than welcome to ask questions regarding competitive battling, our forums in general, or how to get involved in a particular section of the website, and we'll be happy to help you out or direct you to the appropriate resource.

We'll do our best to answer every question in this thread, but if your question relates to a specific part of the forums, you'll likely get a much quicker answer there. For your convenience, here are links to the Simple Questions & Answers threads in Smogon's various forums:

If your question pertains to any of these areas, please use the forum-specific SQSAs.

There are also several other threads in the Information & Resources forum which might contain the information you're looking for:
  • Introduction to Smogon - Provides an introduction to the website and information regarding our various resources and contribution opportunities.
  • Global Forum Rules - You know what these are; you should read them.
  • Competitive Battling FAQ - A basic introduction to competitive battling. If you're completely new to the competitive aspect of Pokemon, then this thread will give you a solid foundation to build from.
  • Tiering FAQ - A useful introductory resource to Smogon's tiering processes.
  • Badge FAQ - A rundown of Smogon's contribution/staff-based awards for contribution: badges. Also, their Badge Leaders.
  • Smogon Staff & Promotions - Contains a list of all staff members and the section of the site they moderate.
  • Smogon Discord Server Directory - All of Smogon's Discord servers are here, ranging from OverUsed to Circus Maximus!
If your question is related to base stats, moves or abilities, it'd be a good idea to check out the SWSH research thread or the Past Generations research thread depending on the game.

Here is a short list of very frequently asked questions that you can consult before asking your own question, as the answer you're looking for may already be here.
Q: Can we delete inactive accounts with 0 posts?
We're not deleting inactive accounts because chances are an older user could return and want their account back. The most that'll probably be done is name changes if a user is desperate for the name. But in general a purge is very unlikely in the near future.

Q: What is an alert?
Alerts are notifications that you receive in the dropdown in the top right corner of the forum index. You get an alert if you've posted in a thread and there are new replies, you've been tagged by someone in a post, you're watching a forum and there are new threads, you're watching a thread and there are new replies, if you receive a "Like" on a post, if someone follows you, and if you receive a visitor message on your profile. Furthermore, if you don't want to receive alerts for any or all of these things, you can toggle your preferences in the Control Panel.

Q: What are followers and how do you get them?
Followers are a very minor quirk of the forum system that Smogon uses. Following someone is simply a way of seeing whether or not they are online more easily, as they appear on the index underneath the "Staff Online Now" list. Furthermore, you can use the news feed to see what the people you follow are doing around the forum, from when they change their avatar to what post they just "Liked". You don't gain or lose anything from having a lot of followers or following other people, but it can be a fun way to connect with other users and keep up with your friends on Smogon.

Q: Why do only some staff appear on the "Staff Online Now" list?
The "Staff Online Now" list exclusively shows Super Moderators and Administrators. Furthermore, some staff members have their online visibility private, and they will not show up on the "Staff Online Now" list if that is the case.

Q: What is hyperlinking and how do you do it?
Hyperlinking text or images means that you are assigning a URL to said text or image so that it redirects you to the URL when you click it. To hyperlink something, wrap URL tags around the text or image, like so:
[URL=URL]text you want to hyperlink[/URL]
Alternatively, you can highlight the text or image, click the chain icon in the post format toolbar, and paste your link in the text box. This will automatically embed the link the selected content.

Q: How do you tag someone in a post?
You can tag users by putting an "@" before their username, e.g.
@Username123 . In order to link to someone's profile, you can also use the member ID found at the end of the profile URL and place it between the following tags:

So to link Quite Quiet's profile, it would look like the following:

[USER=196780]Quite Quiet[/USER]

However, unlike tags, this does not send them a notification.

Q: How do you get a name/ profile details change?
You may post in this thread, and wait for a staff member to go through it.

Q: How do you post an image?
If you have a URL ending in a valid file extension (.png, .jpeg, .gif, etc.), you can paste it within [IMG][/IMG] tags. This will embed an image in your post. Alternatively, you can click the portrait icon in the post toolbar and paste your link there, which automatically embeds your image in a post.

Q: How do you change your avatar?
Click on your username in the top right corner of the index and hover over your current avatar in the dropdown menu. If you click the "Edit" button in the pop-up, you can upload an image from your computer to Smogon. You can also click on your avatar directly if you are viewing your own profile. Furthermore, if you have a Gravatar account, you can simply input your email and activate your Gravatar on Smogon.

Q: How do you private message someone?
On Smogon, "private messages" are just known as conversations, and you can start them with multiple people at once! To do so, hover over the "Inbox" button in the top right corner of the index and click "Start a new conversation". In the new window, type your participants in the first box; if you have more than one person you want to send a private message to, separate their usernames with a comma (,). In the next box, you can choose a title for the conversation. In the last box, just type your message, then click "Start a Conversation" and your PM will be sent.

Q: What is a "CT"?
"CT" is an abbreviation for "custom title", the term the Smogon forum uses to identify the text underneath a member's username and avatar in their postbit. Regular members don't have the ability to edit their CT, but after becoming a badgeholder (a member that's been awarded a badge for their on-site contributions), a member can freely edit their CT. There are some cases in which non-badgeholders have a CT, such as if a member gets a username change and the CT is "formerly [their old username]", or if they have Nitro Boosted the official Smogon Discord server.

Q: How do you post a YouTube video?
To post a video, all you have to do is take the part of a YouTube URL after the "v=" and put it in [media=youtube][/media] tags. For example, to post this video, you should take what's at the end (1yw1Tgj9-VU) and place it between the aforementioned tags, like so: [media=youtube]1yw1Tgj9-VU[/media]. You can also use the media section of the post format toolbar.

Q: How do you use hide tags?
Hide tags, or "spoiler tags", as they're referred to on other boards, are exactly what they sound like: a hidden message. These hidden messages will appear with an orange background a gray text box which will either say "Show Hide" or "Example (open)". The code to create this box is [HIDE][/HIDE] or [HIDE=Example][/HIDE] alternatively. If left without an equal sign, the box's title will simply be Hide. The example area is where to put your hide tag's title; for example, a tag for all Gen 1 Pokemon would be [HIDE=Gen 1][/HIDE].

Q: How do you quote a post?
Clicking on 'Reply' (located on the bottom right of someone's post) will automatically quote the post for you. [quote] Message [/quote] will also quote the post, but it won't tag the user of the post. You can click "Reply" on multiple posts to respond to more than one quote at once. You can also highlight parts of a user's message and click on the "Reply" tag that shows up to only quote specific portions.

Q: What is a VM?
VM is a "Visitor Message" and is the equivalent to posting on somebody's wall for Facebook, or any social media along those lines. This is where easy interactions and communication will occur. Every user has a page for VMs, but privacy settings can be set to turn this ability off. To do exactly this, click on your name in the top right corner of the forum index, then click on "Privacy" and adjust the setting next to "Allow users to post messages on your profile page". Simply clicking on a user's name will pull up this page and where it says "Write a message" is where the post will go when this privacy setting is not activated.

Q: What are badges and what do they do?
Badges are rewarded to users that contribute to the site. Having a badge allows you to have a larger filesize avatar and access to a discussion board for contributors to the community. More information about badges and how to earn them can be found here. A list of all of Smogon's badgeholders can be found here.

Q: What are trophy points?
Trophy points are part of Xenforo, the forum software Smogon uses. There is currently no use for them.

Q: Where can I find damage calculations?
You can find the most recently updated damage calculator here.

Q: Where can I trade Pokemon?
The primary place on Smogon to find others to trade Pokemon with would be the Wi-Fi section, as there's tons of shops there to choose from, and quick/minor trade can be posted in this thread. If you want live interaction with other traders/breeders, you can check out the Wi-Fi room on Pokemon Showdown! Remember, hacking is strictly frowned upon on Smogon and most places promoting otherwise legitimate trade practices. Have some integrity.

Q: How do I see past Smogon bans/suspect tests?
There is a listing of threads that contain past suspect tests in the Blind Voting forum, but there's no currently existing compendium of suspect tests or bans for most tiers in generations prior to Generation 8, but a full list of tiering decisions made this generation can be found here.

If you can't find the answer you're looking for above, then we encourage you to use this thread!

If you spot an error on one of the site pages (such as a Pokemon being listed in the wrong tier in the Strategydex), post here.
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is a Site Content Manager Alumnusis a Top Artist Alumnusis a Forum Moderator Alumnusis a Top Contributor Alumnusis a Top Smogon Media Contributor Alumnusis a Battle Simulator Moderator Alumnus
Hi, I just joined and when I go to the thread to submit my name it says something like this "thread no longer accepting more replies". I am wondering if I go somewhere else to get my name and password. Thanks
Thread "Not open for further replies" indicates that the thread has been locked and no users can post in it without it being unlocked by a mod. OR the whole forum itself has restricted permissions where most likely you're unable to post in it.

What do you mean by getting your name / password though? Is there a particular thread you're referring to and require help in?
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weird question incoming:
is your first badge displayed on the right or on the left when you have more than two badges.
or is it in a specific order?
I'm trying to set a gif that's under 200x200 as my avatar, and it's 75 kb, but it still says the avatar is too big. I have attached the image I'm trying to set.View attachment 69771
I don't think this leads to your problem in this specific instance, but it's worth pointing out that there's a recommendation on the avatar change menu that your image be at least 200x200, not less than.

Edit: ok then
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Social Media Head
PLEASE, SOMEONE HELP ME. Right now. I need answers! I went on Showdown like 8 minutes ago.... I saw it wasn't working, so I went to Twitter and I found out that PS was HACKED.... I have like 2 accounts on Showdown, does that mean all my emails and shit will be hacked too? Or is the only thing being hacked the accounts on PS??? ANSWER ME PLEASE, I use my email for all my social media accounts and I will die if someone hacks me and posts embarrassing/nasty shit. My mom will freaking KILL ME. Help
it's just PS accounts, but if your e-mail password is the same as or similar to your PS! password, I'd change it.

And since I went to so that mean all the hackers memorized my IP Address and shit??? are they hacking my computer??? i need answers, this isn't funny
no they are not hacking your computer. you need to edit your post and not double post. this isn't as big of a dealis you think it is. please calm down.


Ok im new so i try to look around so i read a thread and it says (You have insufficient privileges to reply here.) what does that mean?
That means you aren't allowed to post in a thread either be that you aren't a staff member or you aren't invited to post in the thread.


levitate, levitate, levitate, levitate
More likely answer imo is that s/he needs to confirm her e-mail for full registration. After that it should be fine.


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how is the color of the usernames determined?
Each letter you add or remove in a name changes the color

so if I chose Conni it would be pink and if I added a 'n' it would be blue, and if I removed a 'n' it would be green, that sort of thing
Each letter you add or remove in a name changes the color

so if I chose Conni it would be pink and if I added a 'n' it would be blue, and if I removed a 'n' it would be green, that sort of thing
But by that logic shouldnt 21misa and asim12 have the same color? they didnt when i tried it.


this is the day of the expanding man
There's a maximum number of tags in a single post to notify people. If your purpose is to notify them, you can send a mass PM conversation too.

Also just FYI, editing a post and then tagging people does not alert them. Just extra knowledge.
Do you know what the maximum is?

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