Metagame Terastallization Tiering Discussion [ UPDATE POST #1293]

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Any input is good I'd say. Surprised to hear that (Though not about the Roaring Moon ban), I was actually expecting it to be way more commonly used on the defensive side rather than for STAB Boosts? And I imagine it could just be that there's more answers for potential Tera's in NatDex for them (Or people are primarily playing in OU and haven't found out how to use it on older 'mons).
I'm not the best Pokemon player (this is my first gen back after mainly playing a bit of 6, 7, and almost no 8) so I peak at like 1400 usually so it could just be low level play and people lower on the ladder using it more for the big STAB boost instead of defensively, since I only ever see it defensively on sweepers with pretty defined weaknesses
 
To be fair, we probably could have if we wanted to. It wouldn't be hard to use some useless item and justify it through "gentleman's agreement" if there was enough support for it.

The issue is there wasn't nearly the support for Dynamax that we are seeing now for Tera. What is this really about for people? Is it about the actual mechanics or is it about a popularity contest? I've ranted about this before, so I'll save it. But the difference now is Smogon already set the precedent in gen 8.

If they wind up doing things that way again, Tera will be banned. If we come to some sort of compromise solution, whether it works or not, that will essentially be an admission that the precedent set in gen 8 was wrong. Not that they ultimately banned it, but that the community didn't try harder to make it work first.
It's fun. Terastalization allows for creativity and frees up team building - you can have a glaring weakness and cover it with your tera type selections (Tera Normal Annihilape has some funny calcs into various ghosts), or you can be weak to one specific metagame threat and really focus on countering it, or you can take a low-tier favorite like Avalugg and make him work...

I'm not saying that's a reason to keep something problematic in OU, but it's also really early - even Dynamax survived a month before everyone just abandoned hope of making it competitively interesting. We can't really tell if it's going to be problematic this soon; the best users of terastalization, and the best types for those users, are already clarifying on the higher ladder, which disproves the complaints about being unable to predict how things will utilize the new mechanic.

There's still two entirely valid concerns: that the when will be too random and unpredictable, and that keeping terastalization would require banning so many mons that it'd be healthier to just nuke the mechanic. Either or both could lead to a ban down the road, but again, it's too early to make conclusive statements. People want to give the fun mechanic a fair chance.
 
I mean yeah, but if it was worse than it wasn't worth the same amount of effort to salvage as Tera is.






























Maybe , maybe not. But it was still the generational l gimmick and apparently a lot of people were Turned off by this , which is a large reason Tera is getting this consideration when reading through the policy review version of this thread. And there was still an active minority who wanted to preserve dynamax as well.
 
I've never really contributed to tiering discussion before, nor am I someone you'd call great, but I'll try and sum up my thoughts regardless.

I'm quite a big fan of Terastalization, it adds a fun twist to the metagame and allows more creativity in teambuilding. You can use terastalization to help patch up a weakness, or further boost your offences. It's a neat dynamic, and one that encourages cool teambuilding in my opinion. It also has some interesting applications in the middle of a game, weather you should use it defensively, or offensively.

A point that may or may not be relevant is that gen 9 has brought a ton of power with it. New mons like Roaring Moon, Iron Valiant, Chi-Yu, Chien-Pao, and others have increased the power level quite a bit. This, combined with the nerf to recovery and hazards being harder to clear, makes gen 9 quite the powerful generation. I bring this up because it gives defensive Terastalization more merit. Turning your Iron Hands into a flying type to avoid a Roaring Moon's earthquake is a sign that Terastalization can create a rich and complex metagame, atleast to me.

I also believe it is rather soon to be taking action on Terastalization. I believe we should give Terastalization a bit more of a chance before considering action.
 
I've never really contributed to tiering discussion before, nor am I someone you'd call great, but I'll try and sum up my thoughts regardless.

I'm quite a big fan of Terastalization, it adds a fun twist to the metagame and allows more creativity in teambuilding. You can use terastalization to help patch up a weakness, or further boost your offences. It's a neat dynamic, and one that encourages cool teambuilding in my opinion. It also has some interesting applications in the middle of a game, weather you should use it defensively, or offensively.

A point that may or may not be relevant is that gen 9 has brought a ton of power with it. New mons like Roaring Moon, Iron Valiant, Chi-Yu, Chien-Pao, and others have increased the power level quite a bit. This, combined with the nerf to recovery and hazards being harder to clear, makes gen 9 quite the powerful generation. I bring this up because it gives defensive Terastalization more merit. Turning your Iron Hands into a flying type to avoid a Roaring Moon's earthquake is a sign that Terastalization can create a rich and complex metagame, atleast to me.

I also believe it is rather soon to be taking action on Terastalization. I believe we should give Terastalization a bit more of a chance before considering action.
I do think some of the issues with the meta being super prediction reliant is just because offense is crazy strong right now, because of hazards, the recovery nerf, the scald and knock cutbacks, and the huge power of the new attackers. Tera might well be fine in a less offense-dominated meta.
 
You could also take the view that the support for Tera being higher means that it's a better, more competitive mechanic, and therefore justifies more effort to try and make work relative to Dynamax, which was much more heavily disliked. You could also say that tera is more strategic since it can interact with Pokemon in more ways than Dynamax did, because of the variety of Tera types. IMO it's not so comparable that we need to follow the Gen 8 precedent.
I take the view that it is hypocritical to vote differently for ban based on how much fun you are having versus how overpowered the mechanic actually is or not. This shouldn't be a popularity contest. It should be about the actual merits of the mechanic over everyone's personal bias.

For the record, Tera is even more overpowered overall than Dynamax for reasons like having less restrictions and priority moves. You could argue that it is a more fun mechanic, but this is subjective. I do agree with you that Tera promotes more creativity in teambuilding, though it's worth mentioning Dynamax also had an extra way to set Terrain and/or Weather.

Not necessarily that they didn't try hard enough. The other issue is dynamax ban was more coherent with traditional tiering policy. Either ban it all or leave it all.
No, it's exactly that they didn't try enough. The council showed little interest in even entertaining more complex solutions, unlike what we are seeing here. The majority of the player base at the time didn't want to have a discussion on counterplay options. They just wanted it gone ASAP because they didn't like the mechanic.

What's happening here now may or may not be an improvement, depending on your point of view, but it does make for quite a double standard compared to gen 8. I just have a hard time with all the hypocrisy. And sorry, but that's exactly what it is if you didn't want to make the effort for Dynamax but suddenly want to for Tera.

It's fun. Terastalization allows for creativity and frees up team building - you can have a glaring weakness and cover it with your tera type selections (Tera Normal Annihilape has some funny calcs into various ghosts), or you can be weak to one specific metagame threat and really focus on countering it, or you can take a low-tier favorite like Avalugg and make him work...

I'm not saying that's a reason to keep something problematic in OU, but it's also really early - even Dynamax survived a month before everyone just abandoned hope of making it competitively interesting. We can't really tell if it's going to be problematic this soon; the best users of terastalization, and the best types for those users, are already clarifying on the higher ladder, which disproves the complaints about being unable to predict how things will utilize the new mechanic.

There's still two entirely valid concerns: that the when will be too random and unpredictable, and that keeping terastalization would require banning so many mons that it'd be healthier to just nuke the mechanic. Either or both could lead to a ban down the road, but again, it's too early to make conclusive statements. People want to give the fun mechanic a fair chance.
I agree that Terastallizing is fun. Fun is subjective. Maybe other people don't find it fun. People who tried to say Dynamax was fun in gen 8 were essentially laughed off this forum. There wasn't nearly this amount of talk we already have of giving that mechanic a fair chance. So I have a hard time reconciling with all this being here now. It's just a massive double standard.

I acknowledge that it is very early, but I also ran the Calcs and have seen some of that in action. We can tell enough to understand that Tera is the least balanced generational gimmick so far if we are being objective about it. Something is going to have to be done to reign it in.

There are also more than the two valid concerns you listed. For one thing, double STAB is stupid damage and something needs to be done about that. I don't understand why we aren't seeing more discussion around that.

Another issue is the pokemon that abuse Tera generally have multiple viable types they can go to. Maybe not 18 like some people say. But generally at least a few. A lot of these Teras beat different would be checks and counters so you never know if you are using the right thing to beat it. I've said before the team preview thing would take care of that part, but it is currently an issue.
 
No, it's exactly that they didn't try enough. The council showed little interest in even entertaining more complex solutions, unlike what we are seeing here. The majority of the player base at the time didn't want to have a discussion on counterplay options. They just wanted it gone ASAP because they didn't like the mechanic.

What's happening here now may or may not be an improvement, depending on your point of view, but it does make for quite a double standard compared to gen 8. I just have a hard time with all the hypocrisy. And sorry, but that's exactly what it is if you didn't want to make the effort for Dynamax but suddenly want to for Tera.
What I mean is , trying hard enough implies there was a desire for a complex solution in the first place , which is undesirable in the face of Smogon's traditional tiering policy. This isn't to say we haven't attempted complex solutions (which means there is already a precedent for double standards, unfortunately), but they have been far and few for a reason. The closest example that comes to mind was the whole baton pass fiasco. We tried to nerf to multiple times, nerfing how many members on a team could use it etc, but in the end it was just delaying the inevitable and the move itself was the issue and just needed to be banned. This is the case for most tiers, but apparently BW OU has recently legalized "drypass" so to speak.
But overall it's clear that complex banning it wasn't the right move generally speaking, but hindsight is always 20/20 as well, it wasn't easy to see in advance that the move could be used in all the ways it could be, and it was a novel situation in that sense as i think the only other moves that have been obvious bans are like the OHKO moves and Swagger and the like. You can only try to do something in the first place by making it a goal. Smogon's traditional policy isn't to nerf mechanics or pokemon so that they be balanced in a given tier. We just ban them and make them available in tiers where they aren't problematic, if they are problematic, generally speaking. This is why we don't just make all legendaries playable in OU by limiting them to level 70 or whatever it maybe.

The council last gen stated that maintaining a generational gimmick at the cost of competitive balance was " unnecessary". But yes, there has been a change of tune, and the policy review thread highlights this as due to concerns about the the growth and future of the Smogon community if we just keep banning generational gimmicks, which may apparently be a step too far as opposed to just banning problematic mons like we have always have despite the large number of people who get upset about those as well.

So it's just about trying to find a middleground here I guess if it comes to having to take tiering action against Terra, but I don't necessarily agree that a middleground, complex ban solution is valid either. If Tera is bad for the competitive enviornment it should just go, and if it's fine for the enviornment it should stay, all or nothing.
 
i argued early on in this thread that the mechanic is not uncompetitive. The current state is strongly a teambuilder’s meta and boy do I love teambuilding. My opinion has not changed on that after reading the thread, but my idea for the solution has changed.

After reading the thread, I think a separate tera OU is the only real viable solution. .....

For all I care, Tera OU can be a permanent OM with standard being a tera-free OU. I just would like to continue playing the metagame that I enjoy more.
If I’m being honest, all I want is two ladders. Which one we call “OU” is inconsequential to me as long as I have the option to play both a meta with Tera and a meta without. (That said, I’m leaning a teeny tiny bit more towards the “ban” side.)

Weird question but I do want to ask: wouldn't a non tera OU technically be more akin to a proper definition of what an OM is meant to be? While I've seen the double ladder idea thrown around and I am very much in support of it if we can't reach consensus in the single ladder solution, wouldn't the metagame that preserves the game mechanic be the closer one to simulation as intended? I know it's a matter of semantics, especially since I don't think the playerbase gets divided by OU splitting, but I did want to ask because I find the idea of the tera ladder being the OM weird.
 
Holy shit is It obvious what option Finchinator prefers. No flame towards anyone in the council but I would have hoped the post presenting the options for a discussion would be a bit less biased.

I understand where people are coming from with the talks of how uncompetitive It is because of the impossibility of predicting what Tera type the enemy has, but I dont think its that Game breaking. At the end of the day, at high ladder we know more or less what teras to expect, and the "swing" turn, the turn where the Tera is revealed, only lasts a turn. Most of the time the Tera leaves the Pokemon maimed afterwards, and when It doesnt do so, It is usually predictible.

What I mean by this is that when Gholdengo teras to flying or normal, that can swing things in its favor that turn, but the turns afterwards It is going to be maimed by lacking STAB. Meanwhile Chien might Tera to Dark/Ice Type, or Dragonite to normal, and those options do boost them instead of maiming them, but those are predictible.

So basically, Tera is either predictible, or when It isnt It comes at a cost. When its predictible It pretty much works as a weaker Mega/Dynamax, and when It isnt It is pretty much just a one turn Trump card, and after they have used It the Pokemon becomes easier to deal with.


Lastly I do understand the Focus of this community is competitiveness but I would just like to remind the obvious and say that a competitive format is worth absolutely nothing if its not fun, and I think Teratype is fun. Correctly teratyping to get an advantage is fun. I understand fun is subjective but I think most people Will agree with this. Also, whats the point of OU if It ends Up being a different Game from the one we have in our consoles? I understand banning Dynamax and I was all for It, because It was absurdly unbalanced and completely unheslthy for a multitudes of reasons. But I feel like It set a dangerous precendent. It is my opinion that we should try to make a competitive Game out of the options we have been given, not make our own different Game...
 
What I mean by this is that when Gholdengo teras to flying or normal, that can swing things in its favor that turn, but the turns afterwards It is going to be maimed by lacking STAB.
This is not true; Tera'ing preserves your original STABs even if it doesn't preserve your typing (and if you already had that type, it increases the STAB bonus from 1.5x to 2x). So Tera Flying Gholdengo gets STAB bonuses on Ghost, Steel, and Flying moves simultaneously.
 

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I already brought this up in the Policy Review thread, but since a ton of you clearly didn't read that then I'll give a tl;dr version: for the love of god stop calling Tera uncompetitive. It is not random. It does not remove skill from the equation during battle. The person who Teras first does not automatically win by doing so.

The word you are looking for is "unbalanced". Please use that. Please. Do not muddle the meaning of a term meant to describe strategies like Moody, SwagPlay, and Baton Pass chains.
 
This is not true; Tera'ing preserves your original STABs even if it doesn't preserve your typing (and if you already had that type, it increases the STAB bonus from 1.5x to 2x). So Tera Flying Gholdengo gets STAB bonuses on Ghost, Steel, and Flying moves simultaneously.
Wait are you serious i had no idea about this and I have been playing so much since the Game released. Okay thats kinda silly. Sorry for my misconception then, my bad
 
Before an outright ban, I would prefer to give it a restricted chance by:

Limiting the amount of Pokemon on any given team that have access to possibly Terastallize during a battle
Only 1 can be terastalized. In Teambuilder, this should be easy to code with a simple checkbox
Showing Tera type at Team Preview
Display the tera type of the pokemon that can terastalize allows your oponent to create a better plan for the match.
Banning Tera Blast
I think this move is totally unfair and by banning it, we could limit the possible tera types for each pokemon, as most of them doesnt have a coverage move of every type. Is like every pokemon did Sketch into Arceus' Judgment. Banning Tera Blast, IMO, is the bare minimum.

Example:

Gyarados @ Life Orb
Ability: Intimidate
Tera Type: Ground
EVs: 4 HP / 252 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
- Dragon Dance
- Earthquake
- Waterfall
- Ice Fang

This is my tera-pokémon and you, my oponent, know it. As you see Gyrados tera-type is Ground, you can expect it to have Earthquake and it will transform to avoid a 4x weakness to Electric. However, this info allows me to still play some mind games, as I can decide no to terastalize in front of your Eelecktross, expecting it to have Gigadrain as a coverage move.

With this set of restriction, I think the game remains challenging, funny and openned to a wide amount of variety sets.
 
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Hello everyone, I usually stay out of every subjects and read it from afar. But today I created an account specifically to give my idea on The tera ban as I really like the possibilities that this mechanics offer.


As we all know, tera is mostly broken / difficult to deal with / because of how unpredictable this mechanic is. In stall team it is strong because it let a player remove the biggest threat for it’s team and counter it at any moment. In hyper offense it’s strong because it increase the power of stabs and gives more coverage.

From this I see two problems:
- firstly, the mechanic being new and really interesting / innovative for Pokémon, banning it will kill the player database by making the current gen a copy like of the 8th one.
- secondly, letting it be as it is will definitely hurt the competitive side of Pokemon as it’s to broken AND unpredictable in some situation.


So I definitely understand the propositions made here. However, I feel like restricting Tera to stabs removes the fun part of this mechanic (unpredictability and very large team building options). As well as having a preview for Tera would lead to the same kind of situation by making Tera Pokémons like Megas (a stronger version of themselves that we know before fighting).

This is why I’m considering another option :
- making a ban session before every game where each player bans 1-2 Tera types transformations for the game. This will make the game somehow manageable as it help creating a win condition against stall and as it’s gonna still keep the 9gen fun.
- furthermore, I would lower the base power of Tera blast from 80 to 50 or 55. Making it much less powerful when Teraed and almost useless / being a liability for other Pokemon (as it’s a weak move when not teraed and as it’s taking a skill slot).
- if not enough, i kinda like the idea of removing Teras from every Pokémon with more than 550 total stats (or something similar). Making the building even more interesting by bringing more variability to teams.


I kinda hope that with this, we can still keep the new mechanic’s vibes even in competitive the side while making it not counter intuitive for new players.
Let me know what you think, I’m curious of how viable this idea is ☺.
 
For adjustments that could make it more balanced, you want to try to solve the problems with tera but keep the positives. In my opnion these are:

Problems:
-Defense gets overrun
-Theres no way to prepare for it
-Mons that would otherwise be fine are broken with it

Positives:
-Rewards building and creativity
-It allows for counterplay and raises the skill ceiling
-New experiences every game, new combinations and it's a fresh breath of air and very anti stagnant as the teratypers will evolve with the meta

Comment on ways to tackle it:
-Banning usage of the move Tera Blast. Tera blast isn't very used, so it doesnt solve the problems very well. But it does limit creativity. Bad score 1/5.
-Limiting Pokemon to only using a Tera Type that matches their current STAB. Terastallization allready favors attacking and this will make it even worse for defense mons since new types wont help their resistances much. Does help with problem 2 and some 1 but overall 2/5.
-Limiting the amount of Pokemon on any given team that have access to possibly Terastallize during a battle. Preselecting the ONE mon that can tera definately reduces the offensive pressure, but its still hard to prepare for and will break certain mons. Creativity is not impacted but defenseive counterplay and outplay is, since in this situation you can't tera a wall to counter their offensive tera as it is preselected on a mon not meant to deal with this threat. Problably a fast offensive mon no less. Better 3/5.
-Showing the Tera type of each Pokemon in the each player's party at Team Preview. This one is very interesting and will problably have the largest impact on the feel of the game. Ignorance is bliss as they say; meaning it might get uncomfortable to be able to see the potential change a mon could make, without it almost never materializing. Therefore I'm worried about this being unfun. It does preserve many positives but barely reduces problems. 3/5.
-Take away the original STABs when a mon converts, and only allow terastallazation to a NEW type. This would take away the free adaptability offensive pressure and make sure the upset is short-lived, and still keep creativity and the fun in the surprise factor. 5/5
-A separate ladder. This option doesnt try to change how terastallazation works, which i think must be done for it to be balanced. Therefore it get a score of 0/5 from me.
 
This is why I’m considering another option :
- making a ban session before every game where each player bans 1-2 Tera types transformations for the game. This will make the game somehow manageable as it help creating a win condition against stall and as it’s gonna still keep the 9gen fun.
- furthermore, I would lower the base power of Tera blast from 80 to 50 or 55. Making it much less powerful when Teraed and almost useless / being a liability for other Pokemon (as it’s a weak move when not teraed and as it’s taking a skill slot).
- if not enough, i kinda like the idea of removing Teras from every Pokémon with more than 550 total stats (or something similar). Making the building even more interesting by bringing more variability to teams.
Im sure most of the people have their own propositions in mind, but those in the first post are universal restrictions and we should keep the discussion in that way.

Also, let's forget Pokemon and OU metagame is not only played in showdown but in live tournaments with Nintendo Switch and official games whose code is not modifiable, why would you nerf a move BP to the point of it being useless rather than just ban its use?
 
As of now, I believe that Tera can be a healthy and interesting part of the meta, however, it needs changes before that is possible.
The first change that I would like to implement is the banning of same-type conversion, as all it does is give Adaptability to Pokemon clearly meant not to have it by the developers.
Observe a completely preposterous calculation:

This is a Choice Band Tera Fighting Sun Boosted Koraidon vs a sun-boosted physically defensive Great Tusk -- ordinarily a perfect counter that takes roughly 20% from most Koraidon sets.
(For more information, see this post on Great Tusk in Ubers)
+1 252 Atk Life Orb Koraidon Close Combat vs. 252 HP / 252+ Def Great Tusk: 242-286 (55.7 - 65.8%) -- guaranteed 2HKO

What same-type Tera does is let any one Pokemon suddenly break through bulky checks/counters that would ordinarily hold it back, contributing to the absolutely ridiculously fast-paced hyper-offensive teams being spammed throughout the entire Ubers and OU ladders.
Let's not forget the sheer amount of Baxcalibur, Chien Pao and Palafin's same-type conversions we saw earlier in the generation that leveraged same-type conversion on their priority moves too.
One last comically ridiculous same-type conversion calc is that of Chi-Yu under sun (With Beads of Ruin factored*);

252 SpA Choice Specs Chi-Yu Lava Plume vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Blissey in Sun: 414-488 (57.9 - 68.3%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
252 SpA Choice Specs Chi-Yu Overheat vs. 252 HP / 0 SpD Blissey in Sun: 672-792 (94.1 - 110.9%) -- 62.5% chance to OHKO
No comment.

The second thing I'd like to do is ban Terablast -- there is a reason that Pokemon like Volacrona and Regieleki do not have Ice-type coverage and it's called balance.
A lot of Pokemon are balanced by their move pools, therefore giving them STAB Hidden Power would throw a wrench in balancing.
Here are some calcs:

+1 252+ SpA Life Orb Flutter Mane Aura Sphere vs. 252 HP / 4 SpD Blissey: 439-523 (61.4 - 73.2%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
This is a specs sun-boosted Flutter Mane -- absolutely insane that this is even a thing.

252 SpA Volcarona Ice Beam vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Dragapult: 338-402 (106.6 - 126.8%) -- guaranteed OHKO
This is a neutral Volcarona's STAB "Ice Beam" (Reduced to 80 BP) vs Dragapult, although, Volcarona calcs should be handled with it at +1

252 SpA Volcarona Ice Beam vs. 0 HP / 4 SpD Multiscale Dragonite: 270-318 (83.5 - 98.4%) -- guaranteed 2HKO
This is versus Multiscale Dragonite, still at +0, by the way.


Now, while I have explained why Terablast and same-type conversion need the axe, I have yet to explain why or how leaving the rest of Tera would be healthy for the metagame.
One thing people cite as a potential issue is the "mind games" that Tera conversion introduce, however, these mind games aren't as interesting or random as people like to believe;
If Terablast and same-type conversion were to be banned, conversion would be relegated to types concerning move pool and to a much lesser extent, checks/counters (This is more related to weaknesses/typing, by the way.).
Therefore, every Pokemon would have its objective best Tera conversions mapped out by the player base regarding what beats them and what moves they learn, severely cutting into possible conversions.

Another thing I'd like to mention is that Tera conversions relating to checks & counters can be reasonably guessed by looking at team structures, as teams that use certain Pokemon as a win-condition will base their team structure around removing its checks & counters, thus freeing the Tera slot.
Or, they could decide not to use their team structure to remove their win-conditions checks and instead use its Tera conversion type.
For example, if you're not using Tera Fire Roaring Moon, you're probably using Magnezone or other Pokemon that can remove Corviknight.
If you are using those Pokemon, then you're probably running Tera Steel or Flying Roaring Moon.
 
Physical Special Split comes to mind.
yep as someone who hasnt played competitive since gen 3 (lul).... physical/special split was a huge defining trait of gen 4. i remember not liking it because i thought having a split was quirky.... in retrospect great decision for pokemon tho lol. another big part of gen 4's identity was..... introducing bans lmao (or at least, bans for just being too strong, before gen 4 it was just wobbuffet/wynaut).

but yeah, idk if the things from those gens are really comparable to the obvious gimmicks that have existed since gen 6. those are clearly meant to be improvements to the battle system, as opposed to just *new* things for the battle system. i would like to see terastal stay in the tier if it's manageable like mega evos + z moves. there's precedent for blind gameplay (gen 5's defining trait besides weather was team preview's existence). but like i said i dont actually play anymore so i wouldnt know if it was overpowered or not, just giving my opinion as a spectator who likes to watch poke gameplay.
 
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also just wanna echo the idea that if we're taking action on Tera, it's all or nothing. I think Tera needs to go, but even still I'd prefer leaving it fully unrestricted than trying to impose some of these ideas people have been bringing up. Smogon's tiering system isn't broke and does not need fixing just because you really really like the new generational mechanic.
 
I take the view that it is hypocritical to vote differently for ban based on how much fun you are having versus how overpowered the mechanic actually is or not. This shouldn't be a popularity contest. It should be about the actual merits of the mechanic over everyone's personal bias.
I agree with this, and it’s why I think Tera shouldn’t be banned. Don’t get me wrong, I love the mechanic, but that isn’t the reason I defend it.

Banning mechanics, items, moves, or abilities is very very different from banning Pokemon, which is a problem I’ve been seeing with this thread. People are treating it like a pokemon ban. Pokemon get banned from being too overcentralizing and demanding too much to beat them. This idea just… doesn’t work for anything else. Everyone has equal access to everything, and it’s easier to choose.

Mechanics as described above tend to be banned for being uncompetitive, not for being overcentralizing.

Since there seems to be some confusion here, let’s talk about what uncompetitive actually means. Uncompetitive removes skill from the game and makes skill less valuable. Any player can use it and find sucess with it by putting minimal effort in, or it has a random effect that can easily win games. Tera is nothing like that. It requires teambuilding knowledge to know what tera type to use, and skill to determine when an opponent is going to use it. No randomness is in Tera, only human input. That makes it a lot easier to predict a tera. Tera also has a downside. Cool, I can make my Kingambit ghost to win against the opponent’s Breloom but now I get killed by Chien-pao, Dragapult, and other dark and ghost types I would normally beat. This doesn’t remove counterplay, it changes how you should play the game. In this case, your Breloom still wins unless those two are dead, since you waste your opponent’s tera to win the matchup later! That feels more like skill than uncompetitive.

Examples coming right up! Baton Pass was banned eventually for being too simple to put together full chains, and even after that, just pass a boost. Shadow Tag and Arena Trap were both banned for forcing many teams to run suboptimal items or pokemon to beat them, and almost every pokemon with the ability being broken to the point of banworthy. OHKO moves and luck items/abilites were banned for making games come down to luck out of either player’s control. Dynamax as a mechanic was banned as it had almost no downside to it, gave 2x HP, extremely powerful moves with strong additional affects, and had absurd snowball potential with Max Airstream, which many pokemon could use. The extreme power of many of these things could easily win you a game with minimal effort. Tera isn’t strong offensively, at least not as much as the sheer in-your-face power of Dynamax or even Z-Moves. Tera also encourages a balance-heavy metagame, since it benefits defensive cores a lot more than offensive ones, and is best beaten by a mix of defensive play and offensive play.

A lot of threats that people claim that Tera “Broke” were also kept in check by Tera. Flutter Mane had actually zero checks outside of a quick Tera or a Tera Steel Garganacl, Houndstone hated random normal Teras, Palafin didn’t like Tera Water opponents, Iron Bundle didn’t like Tera Steel Clodsire countering it, et cetera et cetera.

The “It makes priority users too strong” argument only is valid against offense teams. Defense teams couldn’t give two darns about random 40 or 60 base power priority, even with a 1.3x boost bring them up to about 80ish base power. Espeed anyone? The only issue with this is you need to know when to commit your Tera. Pro-ban advocates are saying things that only would occur in a vaccum, a 1v1 metagame, or a meta where all 6 mons could Tera. Using your singular tera to win one offensive matchup is… not worth it?
I’ve seen some people thinking what I thought before we knew much about Tera, so let me make it tera-crystal clear for you: Same Type Tera is a 1.3x boost for one type of move. It is literally adaptability for one type. Now that might sound broken, but Adaptability is only about a 1.3x power boost. For comparison, Dynamax was anywhere from 1.2x to 2x power boost, and Z-moves were anywhere from 1.3x to 2x power boost. Yes, they were limited use, but you can’t always click the same type of move every turn.

Currently the discussion seems split into 3 groups: The SwSh players, who mostly want it banned, the gen 5-7 players, who want it either allowed or complex banned most of the time, and the gen 1-4 players, who mostly want it allowed with no restrictions. This discussion feels like the opposite of the Dynamax discussion, since there is a vocal minority calling for an outright ban, but a majority want it allowed.

In order to convince me of Tera being broken, I need to see how exactly Tera makes it so the better player will not usually win, and how exactly this fits with the definition of uncompetitive without having a simple counterpoint.

Also a note to the complex ban people: y’all are acting as if the mechanic is already dead. Your arguments also feel like somebody saying to ban Libero on gen 8 Cinderace or Protean on gen 6 Greninja to save them, while Protean/Libero were fine on their Prevos and Kecleon.

All in all, Tera is not uncompetitive and feels like a nice and fresh new way to enhance battles. It rewards metagame knowledge and battle analysis, and promotes skillful gameplay and healthy teambuilding skills, and it may even be considered decentralizing.

Please don’t make this a popularity contest. This should be whether the mechanic is competitive, not whether you like it.
 
As an extraordinarily mid competitive player, I have to say that most of the anti-Tera arguments don't really boil down to it being unbalanced, but that it makes the game a sequence of 50/50s. If they Tera, and you didn't expect it, you lose a mon. But I don't really see that at midlevel. Most Pokemon have pretty predictable Tera types. Mag will always Tera Fire, Dirge will always Tera Fairy, Moon will 90% of the time Tera Flying (Admittedly it can run other types but I've only seen it Tera Dragon like 1 time in 2 weeks). Yes, you can Tera into an unexpected type, but there's a reason they have such consistent Tera types. I really honestly and truly think that as the meta grows and adapts, and as sets start to standardize and become more popular, Tera types will standardize as well. Why should we NOT wait a little longer and see if the meta can settle a little? Until the usage stats for the first month are in, I think it's really too early to have a handle on where the balance state will be in a year.

To supplement, looking on Pikalytics for current usage stats, most mons with the highest usage Tera into their STAB, with the exceptions of Fighting Gholdengo, Flying Moon, and Grass Chi-Yu. I don't know what this means long term, but it's worth pointing out.
 
I'd like to preface this post by saying I don't find Tera as restricting as many people say in this thread. People act like this is the second coming of Dynamax when it's not even close. Dynamax was literally a free Power Construct Zygarde with multiple Contrary Draco Meteors... It was absolutely braindead compared to Terastallization and I'm glad it got banned. Mind games are not uncompetitive. They are perfectly fine within reasonable limit. I see Turn 5 in this game the same way I play around something like Z-Freeze Shock Kyurem-B in SM. I can either a) scout / mid-ground around Tera or b) go for the immediate prediction in this case. The fact he brought Kingambit in so recklessly also screams the potential swap to either Ghost- or Flying-type. Here is another high ladder game that demonstrates how you can scout Tera instead of going for an immediate prediction (Turn 25). Overall, the mechanic does have a bit of guessing involved but it's not anything overly egregious like a lot of the "every turn is a 50/50!!!" arguments in this thread are making it out to be. I will demonstrate more of these scenarios in the replay section, but in short I do not think Terastallization is worth taking tiering action on yet because its applications are mostly balanced offensively and defensively:

:Volcarona::Dragonite::Roaring Moon: Offensive Applications - Adding STAB

Adding STAB is one of the most common ways Terastallization is abused-- Volcarona's Giga Drain, Dragonite's Extreme Speed, Roaring Moon's Acrobatics... and a lot of users of this application tend to be predictable! When someone sends out one of the aforementioned Pokemon, any competent player knows what Tera most of these Pokemon settle with. Roaring Moon is the most versatile of all the Tera users in this category, but I would rather see a Suspect Test for it vs banning Tera in order to limit it. Second of all, not every Pokemon has the versatility of a Roaring Moon. I have experimented with unique sets such as Tera-Psychic Volcarona to get past Unaware Clodsire, but overall the set is an inconsistent matchup fish. While one can argue there are "too many possibilities", the reality of the situation is that most people on the higher end of competitive play are not going to pull up with Tera-Bug X-Scissor Iron Valiant, then proceed to sweep you 6-0.

This is definitely a bit extreme so I'd like to display a more realistic example. Here is my Round 2 tournament replay of the No Johns SV Release Tournament. Turn 17 reveals that my opponent's Volcarona has a tech in Tera Blast-Ice. It is clear that the intention of this set is to snipe Dragonite and defensive Garchomp. However, I did not have either of these Pokemon. Thus, all the set really accomplished was get phazed out then die to Sacred Sword later due to how awful Ice is defensively. If my opponent was the standard Giga Drain or Bug Buzz, my opponent could have preserved his Tera for something else and not be forced to burn it off to chip my Ting-Lu. Matchup fishes have existed for generations at this point, and using unique Tera sets still have an opportunity cost (albeit less compared to Z-Moves due to having no item lock). Overall, I find this aspect of Terastallization to be balanced.

:Skeledirge::Clodsire::Garganacl: Defensive Applications - Switching To Superior Defensive Typings

Another common way Terastallization is abused is by switching to "S-Tier" defensive typings such as Fairy, Water, and Steel. Skeledirge prefers Fairy as it allows it to function as Unaware Clefable did in previous generations, while still abusing what makes the base form great in Torch Song, Slack Off, and Will-O-Wisp. Even on more niche Pokemon, competent players can predict what typings are most likely to come out. Turn 50 of this high ladder match I played today is a great example. I was testing Arcanine and my opponent made a great play of clicking Ice Spinner, which covers both the possibility of me Terastallizing into a Fairy-type and also the potential Ting-Lu sack. There are only so many consistent typings that defensive Pokemon like to use. The final thing I would like to say is that defensive Tera will not cost entire games. For example, even if Clodsire surprises your Espathra by Tera'ing into a Dark-type, the most it will be doing is dropping a Toxic or 40% with Earthquake. I find this application of Terastallization to be balanced. I actually think it's healthy because of the breathing room it can provide teams not only in the builder, but also in practice.

:Chien-Pao::Dragapult::Chi-Yu: Offensive Applications - Compounding STAB

The fact that you can basically give any of your Pokemon an Adaptability boost can feel unfair at times. Chien-Pao goes from a great Pokemon to a Suspect Test worthy candidate by Tera'ing into an existing stab such as Ice or Dark. Chi-Yu is another Pokemon that goes from balanced to unmanageable defensively because Tera'ing into a Dark-type drops your weakness to Stealth Rock and allows you to cleanly 2HKO would be counters such as Clodsire. Dragapult is another offender as Choice Specs Dragapult has historically been held back by its low power, but by compounding your Ghost-type stab, it becomes stupid to deal with considering its 142 base speed tier. The only opportunity cost with the latter is you have to drop your Dragon-type defensively, but the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks.

While I do find this aspect of Tera to be unbalanced, I don't think it's unmanageable. A lot of Pokemon do lose their ability to consistently counter threats, but this does not effect many checks. Iron Valiant is still revenge killing a Chien-Pao, even if it's a +2 Tera-Dark Adamant Life Orb Sucker Punch. Tera can even be used reactively to deal with these proactive strategies such as Tera'ing Gholdengo into a Fighting-type. More defensive playstyles are effected the worse by this but this isn't anything new. Every generation has playstyles that are more dominant than the others, and despite this, defensive playstyles are still thriving in current SV OU. I have seen many players on the higher end of the ladder using stall, and, as we saw in the SV Release Tournament, balance and BO are very much viable! This is most likely due to us getting 3 new great Unaware users (all of which use Tera amazingly btw); the recent bans of Palafin and Iron Bundle have also allowed for more flexibility in the teambuilder of all archetypes as we can see in z0mog's series.

:Kingambit::Annihilape::Gholdengo: Defensive Applications - The Best Offense Is A Good Defense

I could not find a simpler way to phrase this so I'm going to start off with an example. Kingambit has been using Tera-Flying recently, even though none of its stabs benefit from it. Why? Because it allows you 1v1 Great Tusk. Annihilape is another good example as changing to the Water- or Normal-type limits the amount of the options to revenge kill it, where the Ghost / Fighting typing would otherwise fall short with its common weaknesses to Moonblast and Shadow Ball. Similar to Roaring Moon, I'd rather see tiering action on Annihilape instead of axe'ing Tera. Finally, we have the aforementioned Gholdengo turning into a Fighting-type to check Sucker Punch users such as Chien-Pao in a pinch. While this form of Tera is very powerful, it's not outright winning games as we can see in the replays below. In the case of Flying-type Kingambit, Great Tusk can still get meaningful chip with Knock Off, while Ice Spinner is a very viable option on its own. This form of Tera is very balanced because the metagame can adapt to it and I'd actually argue it promotes more creativity in the teambuilder.
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I have only touched the surface of what this mechanic can be used in, and the mechanic is balanced in more ways than it is unbalanced in my opinion. It can be used to spinblock, absorb Toxic Spikes, and many more! I know the council wants to do something about the mechanic before majors but I don't think leaving it untouched is going to make SPL feel any less competitive. Here's why:

Round 2 of No Johns has shown a massive increase in competitive quality. Round 1 was a complete disaster with all the cheese, Palafin, and Iron Bundle, but with these being banned, I believe Tera truly adds something special to this metagame. I'd like to take a small sample size in order to reiterate this and the points I have made above:

Round 2 [Bracket B]
Competitive
Uncompetitive
No Effect


Game 1: No significant uses of Tera
Game 2: Chi-Yu is able to overload Clodsire due to the initial critical hit. I blame this more on hax because if he did not crit, iKiQ would have no reason to Tera. From mushamu's side, Tera-Flying Roaring Moon, a standard set, is accounted for in both iKiQ's teambuilding and plays here. The second critical hit was annoying, but most likely would not have mattered with Helmet Garchomp in the back. Even with Tera, I don't think there were any overly unbalanced sequence of plays in this game.


Game 1: Iron Valiant's Tera here allows Lusa to avoid a potential speed tie kill from velvet's Iron Valiant. Tera is a major factor here but it doesn't outright win Lusa the game as the counter play still would have existed via Extreme Speed had velvet won the tie. Tera's inclusion here doesn't make this game any less competitive than it could have been without the mechanic.
Game 2: Tera-Ghost Ting-Lu is phenomenal teambuilding from velvet's side to force chip damage on Annihilape. I absolutely loved that interaction. Lusa's use of Tera will probably be more controversial, but I stand by this opinion that Shadow Ball was never the play. If Lusa ended up being the Tera-Water or Tera-Fairy set, Shadow Ball would not have killed and you'd still lose another Pokemon in this exchange. Tera-Normal was a very real possibility as well (ends up being the case). My suggestion? Trick could have avoided all of this, allowing you to keep Corviknight late-game for Dragonite. The reality of the situation is that Annihilape is the main culprit for the uncompetitive aspect of this game, not Tera itself.


Game 1: Game was done at the point Kingambit swapped to Tera-Flying, but I can see why someone would find that interaction as uncompetitive, despite myself touching on it in the intro and in "Defensive Applications - The Best Offense Is A Good Defense."
Game 2: Fairy Skeledirge is to be expected at this point, and jay was prepared on how to manuever around it.
Game 3: No significant uses of Tera.

Game 1: Sucker Punch would not have killed even without Tera and Tera-Fairy Espathra is to be expected at this point.
Game 2: Pretty lame game tbh, but once again, I'd rather see tiering action on Annihilape instead of banning the mechanic. Annihilape is one of the most broken Pokemon in the tier right now and Tera simply just enhances these already insane capabilities.
Game 3: Amazing interaction here. So Noisy goes for the mono-Dark typing to get the safe Swords Dance on even the potential Tera-Fighting Gholdengo. However, he reveals to be Normal- here in fact. Really cool dynamic and I love the layers it adds here. Even with So Noisy's great play, Tera alone does not win him the game as Z Strats Dragonite is able to clutch up both the game and the series.


Round 2 [Bracket C]
Competitive
Uncompetitive
No Effect

Game 1: No significant uses of Tera.
Game 2: Annihilape proves why it is on the radar with its phenomenal balance breaking. Not even a Tera-Dark Dark Pulse from Chi-Yu can swing the favor into ChrisPBacon's way. Once again, I'd like to see tiering action on Annihilape instead of banning Tera.
Game 3: Steel-Tera is a bit overkill vs Blissey and Tera wouldn't have changed the outcome of the game, but one can argue whether or not the damage boost here is considered balanced, which I talked about in "Offensive Applications - Compounding STAB."

Game 1: Changing to pure Fire-type allows Chi-Yu to avoid the KO from Focus Blast. This was definitely an unexpected turn of events, but TPP was already in an unloseable position at that point. Overall a great game, albeit 1-sided.
Game 2: Great interaction. With Iron Moth using Tera-Fairy to boost Dazzling Gleam, 3d was forced to Tera-Normal as a response. This is an example of using Tera reactively and I found the sequence to be really cool.


Game 1: Mewthree69 uses his Tera-Ground to combat the standard Earthquake set. bilb owo, however, catches Mewthree69 off guard by revealing a non-standard Dragonite set with Tera-Fire Punch. As you can see, this set has its flaws because he did not get the fish he wanted and its lack of Extreme Speed. Tera was not used nor meant to outright win the game. It was just a great interaction and I loved the extra layers it added to this match.
Game 2: Tera-Electric secures the KO on Corviknight, albeit unnecessary. Tera was a non-factor here, and the fact it was used yet didn't affect the game is a testament by itself.
Game 3: Tera-Flying Roaring Moon won the game but bilb owo had counter play to it in Thunder Wave. He just got hax'd. Competent players have shown how well they can prep for the norm in their teambuilding.

Game 1: Great interaction right here. Tera-Normal is the norm when it comes to Dragonite sets and Toustar shows his skill in the teambuilder by tech'ing Tera-Ghost on Chien-Pao. However, MZ scouts for that possibility by sacking Cyclizar, easily the most useless member on the team. Very complex layers added to the game due to Tera and I found this game to be very competitive, and one of the best examples on the list.
Game 2: No significant uses of Tera.
Game 3: Ghost Tera on Chien-Pao allows it to cheese past Corviknight in theory, but it wasn't revealed whether that attacking move was Body Press or Brave Bird. The final interaction is 100% uncompetitive though as Gholdengo would have forced a potential 50/50 but because of Iron Valiant's Tera-Steel, Toustar was automatically placed into the checkmate position.
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There is still skill involved in Tera-based SV games.
I actually think there is more skill when it comes to building this generation.
Tera is just as good when used reactively, vs being used proactively.
Tera adds more layers to the game, and not in an extremely unhealthy way Dynamax did.

Based on this sample size, most of the games are either a) improved or b) not effected by Terastallization's inclusion. The amount of games in the red will decrease as the metagame continues to develop, especially if you ban Pokemon such as Annihilape which is the main culprit of most of the "uncompetitive" games highlighted above. Thus, I support no tiering action. Thank you for reading.
 
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also just wanna echo the idea that if we're taking action on Tera, it's all or nothing. I think Tera needs to go, but even still I'd prefer leaving it fully unrestricted than trying to impose some of these ideas people have been bringing up. Smogon's tiering system isn't broke and does not need fixing just because you really really like the new generational mechanic.
A false dilemma, also referred to as false dichotomy or false binary, is an informal fallacy based on a premise that erroneously limits what options are available. The source of the fallacy lies not in an invalid form of inference but in a false premise. This premise has the form of a disjunctive claim: it asserts that one among a number of alternatives must be true. This disjunction is problematic because it oversimplifies the choice by excluding viable alternatives, presenting the viewer with only two absolute choices when in fact, there could be many.

There are numerous ways we can limit Tera that go short of a full ban. I think only having one tera + announce it at team preview is consistent with other decisions like Mega-Rayquaza clause that can be enforced IRL, even if inconsistent with cart. There's value in the mechanic that I think a lot of people would like to see in some capacity in Gen 9 competitive.
 
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