Tournaments Coverage

By Earthworm. Logos by Zracknel.
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We're now a quarter into 2012, and the tournaments scene has been anything but quiet. There have been a number of changes and exciting new developments, as well as a lot of challenging tournaments. If you are new to Smogon or Tournaments and you are interested in competing with some of the best, head on down to the Tournaments forum and find a tournament with open sign-ups to join!

New in Tournaments

A new official tournament (that is, one where the winner receives a trophy) is going to start up in 2012 involving metagames that have previously been under-stressed in our official tournament circuit: BW UU, BW RU, BW Ubers, BW NU, and BW LC! Anyone will be able to participate in this tournament, and the tournament is designed to be accessible even to players that have only played one of the above metagames. More details will be posted closer to the start date, which is slated to be sometime in July, so keep an eye on the Tournaments section.

Smogon also has a new e-magazine dedicated entirely to reporting on the Tournaments section! The Competitor focuses mostly on official tournaments like the Smogon Premier League, World Cup of Pokemon, and the Smogon Tour, but also has a section dedicated to reporting on the more interesting smaller tournaments. You'll find interesting insights and exclusive interviews with some of the big names in the tournaments scene, as well as a fair number of tongue-in-cheek humor articles. Each new issue is stickied in the Tournaments forum as it comes out. If you have any comments, suggestions, fanmail, criticism, etc., then please PM The Competitor! Thanks to Kinneas and Eraddd for getting this started up!

There have also been some changes in the Wi-Fi Tournaments section. You may have noticed that the section has been moved back to the Wi-Fi section of the forums. This was done to give the section a fresh start, and with it we also have a new Wi-Fi Tournament Director joining Alaka: Ditto! A new season of Live Tournaments has also started up. If Wi-Fi battling is in your domain, I highly recommend participating in the Wi-Fi tournaments section.

Current Official Tournaments

SPL Logo

Smogon Premier League 3

The final four teams have been decided in this year's Smogon Premier League, and the playoffs have just begun. This year's table-topping team was the Ever Grande BIGS, managed by Fabbles, followed closely by Atticus's Indie Scooters, then The_Chaser's Alpha Ruiners and JabbaTheGriffin's Team Raiders. The first round of the playoffs pits the BIGS against the Raiders, while the traditional Scooters-Ruiners playoffs clash is the hotly contested second match-up. Predictions made in the thread don't seem to denote a clear favorite in either of the match-ups, so we can expect both pairings to potentially go right down to the wire. Two of the teams will reach the finals, and one will take out the premiership and earn themselves the bright red SPL trophies.

This year's SPL season has been fairly straightforward in comparison with previous ones. The Alpha Ruiners got to a great start with three convincing wins over the heavyweight-filled Wifi Wolfpack, their rival the Indie Scooters, and the Cryonicles, earning themselves a great BD that they maintained throughout the season. They led the competition until their Week 4 loss to the Team Raiders, who then briefly held the title of the only undefeated team until they lost to the Ever Grande BIGS the following week. Once the BIGS led the competition, they never looked back, and ended the season in first place, concluding a successful season with a cool 11-0 victory over the Classiest in Week 9. At the other end of the table, the Wifi Wolfpack and Circus Maximus Tigers only mustered a single victory throughout the season, while the Stark Sharks and Congregation of the Classiest were stuck with only three and two wins, respectively. The Dragonspiral Tyrants and Cryonicles had a middling season, but a bad start to the season left these teams unable to get back into playoffs contention, with their hopes fading by the conclusion of Week 8.

Now that there are less than two weeks until our new champions are crowned, make sure you follow the playoffs in the Smogon Premier League forum and support your favorite team!

Smogon's VGC 2012 Tournament

Signups for Smogon's second-ever Official VGC Tournament have just concluded, and 256 players are now vying for the title of the Smogon VGC 2012 champion. There has been a very varied turnout this year, with some of Smogon's best singles OU players, including recently crowned Official Smogon Tournament champion Snunch and last year's Smogon Frontier winner Bloo, giving the TPCI doubles format a shot. Heavyweight VGC players like Huy and Duy Ha are also present in the entrant list. Good luck to everyone participating in this great event!

Upcoming Tournaments

Smogon All Generation Tournament, hosted by Malekith, will be a best-of-five in all five generations' OU metagames each round, to find out who has the greatest mastery of all five generations.

The Best of Three Tournament II, hosted by Lunar, will be the same format as its predecessor: best of three in BW UU, BW OU, and BW Ubers.

RarelyUsed Tournament II, hosted by Texas Cloverleaf, will be a standard BW RU tournament. The metagame has changed significantly since the last one, so it will be interesting to see if the same players still dominate the metagame.

ADV OU Smackdown, hosted by NatGeo, will be a standard ADV OU tournament. Players that want to practice for the upcoming Smogon Tour will find this a great opportunity for ADV tournament play.

BW VGC 2010 (tentative name), hosted by sandman, will be a BW version of "Ubers VGC", where two powerful legendaries are permitted on each team. The tournament also has a minor tweak to the Sky Drop and Gravity glitch-inspired rule.

Overused Cavalry II, hosted by Tomahawk9, is a tournament where Pokemon from the OU tier are allowed into the UU tier to examine their effect on the metagame and challenge players to adapt.

The Smogon Ohama Tournament 2, hosted by Brammi and Lady Salamence, is the second edition of the Omaha Card Game-inspired tournament hosted in 2011, where players choose their Pokemon from a chosen bank and a set of "community Pokemon" that changes each round.

Power Creep: DPP OU v. BW UU, hosted by Chou Toshio, is a unique opportunity to test whether the statement that "BW UU is like DPP OU" holds true, by effectively pitting the tiers against each other.

The Eo's Proposition Tournament, hosted by Eo Ut Mortus, is a fun tournament where Eo Ut Mortus will arbitrarily ban combinations that people tend to complain about each round.

Recently Completed Tournaments

Official Tournaments

OST Logo

Smogon Tournament #8

After close to four months, the eighth Official Smogon Tournament has finally come to a close. With the end of the tournament, we of course also have a new champion, whom I am sure you all know by now: Snunch! Snunch has earned the title of the first-ever BW Official Smogon Tournament champion, and with the title he has earned the shiny OST trophy on his Smogon profile.

As this year's tournament was the largest ever by a fair margin, Snunch had the longest road of any Official Smogon Tournament champion so far, having to defeat nine opponents in a row to earn his victory. His opponents, in order, were as follows: TEzeon, SlimMan, fatty, blarajan, yan[sogeking], badabing, SJCrew, McMeghan, and Thatsjustpeachy. Snunch won the finals two games to none, winning a fairly close first battle and then shutting down Thatsjustpeachy's team quickly in the second game. Congratulations to Snunch on your amazing achievement; you are certainly a deserving first BW champion!

The Official Smogon Tournament would not have been the great success it was without the various contributions of people like Eo Ut Mortus, Zracknel, Hipmonlee, Crux, and everyone who helped to write up highlight match descriptions for the entertainment of those following the tournament. Thanks to all of those people, as well as everyone who participated in the event, and Earthworm for hosting. Also, congratulations to Earthworm on winning this year's prediction tournament by a single point!

Interview with Snunch


Of your nine opponents throughout the tournament, who was the most difficult, and why? What do you attribute your success to, and do you have any advice for players that aspire to succeed like you have?


All of my matches were difficult and all of my opponents were skilled so this is a tough question to answer. My only loss came in Round 2 against SlimMan, who had a very good team; if he had used other ones in games 2 and 3, I might have been eliminated very early. In the semifinals and the finals I spent a ridiculous amount of time preparing teams for my opponents, especially the semifinals vs McMeghan. He is such a strong battler with good teams, I knew I really had to nail mine if I wanted to win. In terms of the actual quality of the battles, I think badabing offered the biggest challenge. Both of our games were very close and luck-free, forcing me to think ahead much further than I'm used to.

I think the most important factor of my success was having a solid group of people there to support and help me; I don't think it would have been possible to win without them. The second most important factor would be my teambuilding. I never used any team that one could consider "standard", but I stuck with flexible Pokemon that were good in their own right and not just gimmicks. This caught a lot of my opponents off-guard, even the ones expecting me to use weird stuff. My piece of advice would be this: It's very easy to get overwhelmed in big matches and play below the level you expect from yourself. If you know this is happening, spend a few minutes before each game collecting your thoughts and pumping yourself up. I listen to a song, but this can take any form. Spend a lot of time at the team preview window, which will not only give you a lot of valuable information, but also cause you to play slower and more intelligently for the rest of the game. When you're calm and playing slowly, your level of play should increase dramatically.

Other Tournaments

Scales of Justice was a tournament hosted by zarator where players had to team build according to a restriction based on usage statistics. kd24 defeated H-C in the finals, managing to stall his way to victory. The replay of the finals can be viewed here. kd24 isn't exactly new to tournaments, having won several in the past, including some DPP Smogon Tour tournaments. Congratulations kd24, and thanks to zarator for hosting another successful tournament!

Battle City Tournament was a unique tournament hosted by Steven Snype, Eos, and Bloo. In the first round, players had to wager chips against each other and then battle in BW OU to reach a target that allowed them into the next round. Some players had to play upwards of ten games in order to get the chips necessary due to losing the chips they had won over and over. Eventually, the second round started with the final sixteen, and then a single elimination bracket, where competitors played a best-of-three in ADV OU, DPP OU, and BW OU, reduced them to two: DracoMalfoy and ENZ0. Both players defended their home turfs with ENZ0 winning DPP OU in a close game and DracoMalfoy taking ADV OU, leaving the entire tournament to whoever won BW OU, which turned out to be ENZ0. ENZ0 has enjoyed a fair amount of tournament success with numerous wins over the years, as well as great SPL and WCoP records. Congratulations on yet another tournament win! Special thanks also to Steven Snype and Bloo, who took over the tournament from one of the original hosts and had to do a lot of work to get the tournament up to date and running again.

RBY/GSC/ADV Mashup II was the second edition of a recent "old gen" tournament where players battled in a best-of-three series consisting of RBY OU, GSC OU, and ADV OU each round. The previous edition's winner was Umby, who defeated Earthworm in the finals. In this iteration, Earthworm managed to go one further and won the tournament, defeating Pocket in the finals in ADV OU and GSC OU, while losing RBY OU. The battle logs can be found in this post. Earthworm has won a large number of DPP tournaments in the past as well as some BW tournaments, but this was the first tournament he has won involving RBY/GSC/ADV; the only other early-gen tournament he won was one in the RS200 metagame. Congratulations, Earthworm! Thanks also to ENZ0 on a great job hosting another excellent standard tournament.

Tournament of Thieves III was the third edition of Stone_Cold's team stealing tournament, where players find teams in the Rate My Team section to use against their opponents. The previous editions were won by reyscarface and Iconic. This year, Canadian veteran Krack defeated Spanish player Colchonero in the best-of-three finals, taking both BW OU and BW UU. Krack used toshimelonhead's Rain team in OU and Banedon's QuiverPass team in UU. Krack has been a very successful tournament player over the years, winning multiple regular tournaments and five Smogon Tour tournaments, while also consistently performing phenomenally in SPL and the World Cup in both DPP and BW. Congratulations to Krack on securing yet another win! Thanks also to Foster on a great job of hosting the tournament!

Sideboard Tournament was a new tournament hosted by blarajan, similar to LonelyNess' Ultimate Cup tournament series from 2008 and 2009. Competitors played a best-of-three series each round, but with the ability to change out two Pokemon for two on their sideboard of four each battle. KnightoftheWind came out on top against Scimjara and HellPowna in the round robin final, winning two games to none both times. The replays against Scimjara are here and here, and against HellPowna: here and here. KnightoftheWind has been playing tournaments for quite a long time, but this is the first time he has managed to win a tournament for himself. Congratulations KnightoftheWind on your first individual tournament victory! Thanks to blarajan for doing a good job of hosting.

UU Olympus was a UU team tournament spanning the three most recent generations: ADV UU, DPP UU, and BW UU. Each round, three players each played one of these three tiers, and the team that won at least two battles progressed to the next round. The finals were between three teams: Team Bad At Making Decisions (IronBullet93, Bluewind, and Eo Ut Mortus), Team The PO Lovers Y\N (Ojama, EspyJoel, and wilson46), and Team BIG DICKS (Earthworm, Iconic, and Bloo). Earthworm defeated IronBullet93 and Ojama in ADV UU, and Bloo defeated wilson46 and Eo Ut Mortus in BW UU to win the tournament for Team BIG DICKS. Earthworm and Iconic were both undefeated throughout the tournament, and Bloo only sustained a single loss. Congratulations Team BIG DICKS, and thanks to Malekith for hosting this fun tournament!

VGC Secret Santa was for the first time run alongside the regular OU Secret Santa this year. If you aren't familiar with Secret Santa, all entrants submit a team at the beginning of the tournament; these teams are then secretly distributed to the other players of the tournament without them knowing whose they received. The tournament is a fun event for all involved, often filled with complaints towards the anonymous team builders, and this year was no exception. The finals consisted of three players: Eraddd, zarator, and Human. zarator, commanding DaFlo's team, ended up coming out on top after an initial round robin tie. Congratulations zarator on your fourth tournament win! Thanks to Ditto for volunteering to host the VGC edition of Secret Santa on such short notice.

The Most UBER Tournament Ever was a BW Ubers team tournament that required its participants to adhere to certain team building restrictions each round. For example, some players had to play against each other without any entry hazards, while others had to use teams with Groudon, Ho-Oh, and Forretress all on the same team. The two remaining teams in the finals were Team What A Sexy Indian I Smell (blarajan, idiotfrommars, AndViet, drcossack, and zarator) and Team TBD (JabbaTheGriffin, tito, mostwanted, ToF, and Taylor). Team TBD ended up taking the tournament, with tito, ToF, and Taylor defeating idiotfrommars, drcossack, and zarator respectively, while blarajan beat JabbaTheGriffin for Team What A Sexy Indian I Smell, leaving the final score at 3-1. Congratulations Team TBD! Thanks to bojangles, Hugendugen, and Zephyr for hosting!

Home Field Advantage was a league-style tournament where everyone competing had to play for an eight-week season before the top players entered the playoffs. The tournament brought a new and unique idea to the table by providing certain players with a "home field advantage," which meant they could choose which BW tier to play. After three months of battling, two players remained in the grand finals: Giga Punch and MarceloDK. MarceloDK won 2-1 in a best of three, playing each of BW Ubers, BW OU, and BW UU once. Giga Punch won Ubers and MarceloDK won OU and UU. Congratulations to MarceloDK on your well-earned win and first tournament victory outside of the Smogon Tour! The host of this innovative new tournament was Dubby, and without his hard work getting the rounds up, PMing out schedules, and deadline adherence this tournament would not have been anywhere near as successful, so well done!

Mono Tournament III was the third rendition of the Mono Tournament, previously hosted by Earthworm, where players must use a team entirely composed of Pokemon that share a single type in common. Lamppost adapted the format to BW and improved the method of sending out types by allowing players to choose from three randomly generated types and providing the option to choose from another three after each won round in the tournament. The finals of the tournament were between wilson46 and Heist, two very talented tournament players. wilson46 used mono-Ice, while Heist used mono-Water. In a clash of Hail vs Rain, wilson46 came out on top and defeated Heist to win the tournament. The log of their match can be viewed here. Congratulations on your fourth tournament victory, wilson46! Apart from his individual tournament wins, wilson46 has also put in some very solid team tournament performances recently, including going 4-1 in the most recent World Cup of Pokemon and 6-2 in SPL3. Thanks to Lamppost for hosting!

SWAG LIKE PICCOLO UBERS TOURNAMENT aka Steven Snype's Uber Tournament was a unique Ubers tournament hosted by Steven Snype. Each round, every pair would play a randomly generated Ubers match of RBY, GSC, ADV, DPP, or BW. By the time the tournament had reached its final round, the remaining players were Tournament Director Bloo and Mexican player Pkrs. The final round was a best-of-five showdown in all five Ubers tiers. In the end, Bloo managed to defeat Pkrs in all three of the most recent generations, earning himself a decisive victory and netting himself another tournament win. The replays are here: ADV Ubers, DPP Ubers, BW Ubers. Congratulations, Bloo, and good job on hosting yet another fun tournament, Steven Snype.

The Indigo Plateau Conference was a new and unique tournament created by twash. The tournament took the idea behind the Smogon Frontier and transformed it into a tournament format that would certainly result in a winner. In the first round, players would have to challenge gym leaders specially selected for their prowess in BW OU. Like in the Frontier, the gym leaders themselves could also challenge each other for a shot at making the playoffs. The players with the most gym badges progressed to the next rounds, where the tournament moved towards a more typical format, eventually ending in single elimination best-of-three matches in BW OU. The final two players were Agammemnon and Razza, two players who have both performed well in past tournaments, and in Agammemnon's case, won several. Razza won the series 2-1. Congratulations on your first tournament victory, Razza! Great job on making this tournament format successful, twash.

Uber Inclusion II was a tournament originally hosted by iKitsune in 2010 that was adapted to BW by Lady Salamence. Each round, a Pokemon classified by Smogon as Uber was released into the OU metagame to cause havoc and make the players try to adapt to a metagame with a single dominatingly powerful Pokemon present. In the finals, Arceus was released, leaving finalists Bloo, Raseri, and SoulWind having to figure out how to handle the most powerful and versatile Pokemon in the game with only OU Pokemon and their own Arceus. Bloo and SoulWind both saw the opportunity to use Arceus among primarily defensive OU Pokemon, while Raseri took a more balanced approach and packed counters to some specific Arceus movesets. Bloo won against both Raseri and SoulWind in the round robin finals, leaving him the victor of yet another tournament (logs here and here). Bloo has recently been on a win streak, and isn't showing signs of slowing any time soon. This is, if you take into account Smogon Tour wins and team tournaments, Bloo's eleventh tournament victory in under a year, an extremely impressive accomplishment. Congratulations, Bloo! Also, thanks to Lady Salamence for hosting.

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