Tournaments and their effects on Pokemon bans in general


queen vados
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The usage stats from August were just posted and with it came tier shifts, and RU getting plenty of new toys. But immediately afterwards, Zydog and mega absol were quickbanned by the council. For context, we've had mega absol before in alpha and it was frankly quite broken but rose to UU once beta came around. But Zydog is one we never had in RU, so we didn't even get to use it in ladder at all, and it doesn't even sound remotely close to being broken on paper since literally half the tier's walls check it.

The reasoning for the ban was this:

The RU council has decided to Quick Ban both Mega Absol and Zygarde-10%, otherwise known as Zydog(e). With RU Open Round 7 coming up in the very near future, and snake draft Phase 1 a week away, we decided it was best to banish these behemoths as soon as possible. Do not fear, though, as Zygarde-10% will be retested later this week. This will be a public test, based on the precedent in existence at this time. Mega Absol has been deemed to be way too unhealthy for our current metagame, so there are no plans to retest it at this point, although this could potentially change I suppose.
Now it says zydog will be retested later this week, which is slightly relieving, but it highlights the bigger problem: the ruling with tournaments related to Pokemon recently introduced to the tier should be looked at.

In all other games I played, if a character was introduced or a new patch is rolled out very close to the date of a tournament, they wouldn't be allowed. EVO doesn't allow DLC characters if they're released within a week or two of the tournament, and the biggest Overwatch tournament used the older patch for their tournaments and a bunch of other tournaments banned newly introduced characters and maps as well. The amount of time needed between a character or a patch's introduction for them to not be banned is arbitrary, however. One tournament would ban a DLC character if it was introduced before the tournament in a week, another would ban it if it was 2 weeks, etc.

The reason for that is because everyone would've practiced without those new changes to the games and allowing them would be unfair to those who already put in a lot of time and effort with the older version of the game, or it could allow for a potentially broken character to win through matchup inexperience.

So why can't we do the same with Pokemon? That way the ladder and everything else besides tournaments won't be affected by new drops or the delay of suspect tests to accommodate for the tournaments. If a Pokemon were to be banned/introduced/retested before a certain period passed, then it would be banned for that said round/tournament. That way all sides are happy, no? It seems to me its best to keep tournaments from affecting tiering decisions in that way, quickbanning Pokemon only to not allow them in a round and retest them later. This way the majority of users won't get fucked over one frankly bad ruling in tournaments.

Also, it would go the other way around as well. If a Pokemon were to be banned or rose too close to a tournament's date, it would be allowed.


The King Of Games
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DOU has been doing what you suggested for years in our tier specific tournaments for the exact reasons you stated, so good to see more people get behind that. The current standard ruling allowed tournaments to become too volatile for our liking.

I definitely wouldnt permanently lock the banlist at the start of our smogon tournaments because the difference between our tournaments and tournaments in other games is that those generally take place over a couple days, meanwhile ours generally go on for weeks. Playing a 11 week old metagame isnt something I think is ideal so allowing introductions and bans to freely go into effect during early rounds while following the current ruling is pretty acceptable.

Personally I dont think pokemon introductions or bans should go into effect for the following stages of a tournament:
1. During Playoffs of a tournament that features a playoffs
2. During the Top X of Y person tour

X and Y are numbers we can work out on this thread. At minimum for most tours I feel X should probably be at least 4, implying semifinals, but can be more depending on how large Y is and single vs double elim

Some examples of past decisions DOU has done:
1. Mega Diancie during Top 8 of Smogon Doubles Tour Playoffs. Not allowed for rest of the tour.
2. Shaymin-Sky banned via suspect during Losers Final of 2015 Summer Seasonal. Still allowed for rest of the tour
3. Hoopa-U introduced during Top 8 of 2015 Summer Seasonal (128 man tour. Winners Semis). Not allowed for rest of the tour.

Cant seem to find the official post for the Shaymin Sky one but I am positive this was the case and it was conveyed to the players as it was brought later in Grand Finals.

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