20 Memorable Articles in The Smog

By Ray Jay. Art by Birkal.
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It's not a little-known fact that everybody who's somebody keeps up with The Smog. The Smog is arguably Smogon's most accessible, fun form of media, and it shows; nearly every good user on Smogon keeps up with The Smog, but don't worry, CAP members follow it too. Surely, we can all think back to some of our favorite articles in The Smog. Perhaps you're musing over some of MoP's writings right now, notable for their facetious style. Maybe still you're more serious and think that some of the Featured Pokemon articles were really great, but probably not. Perhaps you just giggled yourself silly upon reading some of the "Top 10" style articles. On the other hand, you may have only recently started reading The Smog, but were too ashamed to tell your friends and thus have missed a whole slew of hilarious Smog articles. Regardless of which category you fit into, it's always good for posterity's sake to go back and review some of the best of the best.

Originally, this was intended to be a top 20-style article, but money talks, and eventually, all of the articles about Smeargle's Studio got moved up to way too high on the list. In the end, I have compiled a list of 20 equally good, all wholesome, quality pieces of literature that mayhaps you'll remember as something special, accompanied by my equally unfunny comments. Without further ado, let's take a trip down memory lane.

Missingo, it Rhymes with Flamingo
Article: Pokémon Gamefreak Only Included to Troll Us
Issue: 2
Number of Snide Shots at GameFAQs: Sadly, only 1
One of the earliest articles in The Smog, this one is sure to be remembered as one of those "oldies but goodies." Aside from pioneering the Top 10 format that would eventually become a staple for particular articles in The Smog, it provided some fun-pokery at Game Freak's design, something artists would later do in every issue. Thunda and CaptKirby have a memorable article on their hands, up until the last line: "We know that you enjoyed our article, no need to hope."
Injustice: AFROBULL at Only Number 8
Article: Top 10 Manliest Pokemon
Issue: 13
Pokemon That Also Made the Top 10 Fabulous Pokemon: Machamp
Speaking of those in a Top 10 format, this article also follows said pattern. The subjective nature provides for quite a few laughs (Nidoking's at number 4... this is a joke, right?) as well as some thought-provoking statements ("Groudon, however, sleeps with 50 metric tonnes of magma gushing on him every second"). In all actuality, I only wish to highlight this article to recognize the flaws of a subjective system; had the community at large had anything to say about the Top 10 Manliest Pokemon, it is undeniable that AFROBULL would have been number 1.
Trying to Explain a Child's Game with Physics
Article: How Moves Work
Issue: 19
Amount of Electrical Power Needed to Power Magnet Rise Against Earth's Magnetic Field: "a stupid amount"
Our journey continues with a more recent article that initially based itself off of an article that still hasn't been featured in The Smog (spoilers: it's by biologists). Cookie and Fatecrashers teamed up for this one to provide us with some nerdy writing accompanied by equally nerdy yet oh-so-cute drawings, and the result is good for a few laughs along with a higher score on your AP Biology test.
How Eo Ut Mortus Gets All His Tournament Teams
Article(s): Featured RMTs
Issue(s): 1-19
Total Number of Featured RMTs: 55
No issue of The Smog would be complete without a Featured RMT or six. Supposedly, one of Great Sage's Challenge Cup RMTs is to be featured next issue, so stay tuned.
Oglemi Stirs up Massive Internet Controversy
Article: Top 10 Fabulous Pokemon
Issue: 19
Number of Years Gay Rights Set Back: At least 30
Equally important (and for all the wrong reasons) is the recent fabulousness conjured up by Oglemi. The article itself is undeniably hilarious, but easily the best part of this article was the controversy surrounding it. After the release of Issue 19, numerous people apparently decided that this was somehow directed as a politically incorrect statement towards homosexuals and then were immediately forced to cover their tracks when they learned the article about fabulousness was written by someone equally fabulous. Lighten up.
Cross Chop Can Be Bred Onto Many Pokemon
Article: cookie's Tips
Issue: 8
Blatant Immitations: Phil's Protips
"Don't lose!" The words rang through the ears of every reader as they OMG LOLed through cookie's Tips. The casual style was a forerunner for future articles, which ditched the "formal" attitude possessed by Smogon's analyses. Some users complained that these tips weren't actually helpful, but hey, that's just the way the cookie crumbles.
We Still Don't Know What Magmar Is Doing
Article: The Demise of Sprites
Issue: 4
Seconds Game Freak Spent Drawing Electrode's Eyes: 6 (?)
Mocking Game Freak's choices that affect the metagame is only rivaled by mocking Game Freak's choices artistically. CaptKirby, however, points out the said mistakes of the company tactfully ("Hoothoot was flying on its way to a productive night of hooting, when seemingly out of nowhere a glass window cropped up and hindered its path with a violent crash"). Perhaps most important is the fact that this article seemingly pioneered the field of getting artistic articles into The Smog, some of which are actually enjoyable.
The Name is Not Actually a Racial Slur!
Article: Judge a Pokemon: The Smog's Art Panel
Issue(s): 13 - Present
Number of Bad Puns: 0, they're all incredible
It seems that with every installment of Judge a Pokemon (oft abbreviated JAP—or not, depending on who you ask) I look at a Pokemon in a new way (I will forever see Kyurem's "wings" as Charlie Brown kites). Despite the pitiable attempts at humor, I still feel that some credit has to be given here for the panel's dedication (it may not show up until 4 hours before release, but I promise, it's there).
DougJustDoug Wins Everything
Article: Smogon Awards Results
Issue: 6
Did Earthworm Actually Think Other People Deserved His Award: Unknown
While the Smogon Awards weren't necessarily a new thing, giving them a home in The Smog has since made it more than a notable article. There's simply no better way to bring a community together than by competitively pitting them against each other and deciding which ones are good and which ones suck. There were quite a few notable awards, and one especially notable one is Theorymon as most promising new user, implying the voters had not sat down and spent a few hours reading one of his Ubers analyses yet.
Rising_Dusk a Fraud
Article: Interrogation of Rising_Dusk
Issue: 18
Number of People Interested in Magnetohydrodynamics: 0
There are Pokemon nerds, but then there are nerds that also happen to play Pokemon. I can confidently say that my friend Rising_Dusk falls into the latter category. If you're of average intelligence or lower, you can basically scroll down to the last third of the article, because everything above that, from unintentional anagrams to induced oscillatory nutation, will not make much sense. Suddenly, I begin to feel bad that I was allowed on the Grammar-Prose Team alongside this guy. Of course, the most notable thing is inarguably that this was Rising_Dusk's final issue, and his time as an editor of The Smog is most certainly appreciated.
"My cute POKéMON wish to make your aquaintance!"
Article: Cutemons
Issue: 11
Delibird... what?
There's a certain aspect to Pokemon that really trumps competitive viability in most senses, and that's cuteness. How else do you explain Squirtle topping the usage stats last month? Jesting aside, it is a sad truth that Pokemon fans are really only in it for the cute Pokemon, as unmanly as it may seem. Otherwise, we'd probably all be playing Digimon. The Pokemon Company has some things figured out, however, and for whatever reason we keep coming back for more each generation, even if some of the newer Pokemon are, frankly, Trubbish. Not all is lost though, and this article is helpful in restoring your beliefs in why you play Pokemon.
Hit or Miss
Article: Minimizing the Effects of Luck
Issue: 2
Worst Move in the Game: Stone Edge
For all of us, we have one issue, that metaphorical "skeleton in the closet" that drives our very sense of being. Perhaps it's the issue of abortion, or maybe welfare, or, if you're reyscarface, BS HAX. Caelum, a longtime contributor to the site, brought us some advice we can all use in this one (who could forget the mad wisdom imparted such as "use more accurate moves" if you're missing?). While his expertise will almost certainly never reach that of your author, you can be sure that the advice here is Smogon-approved and was never raised on a farm where it was fed steroids or other chemicals.
We Don't All Have Time For Smeargle's Studio, But...
Article: Smeargle's Studio Update
Issue(s): 16 - Current
Truly an "art"icle
Maybe you're not the best artist, in which case it's wisest to "leave it to the pros." However, Alchemator has proved to us time and time again the old adage saying that "just because you can't draw on the level of Fatecrashers doesn't mean you're entirely useless" with his useful contributions such as the Smeargle's Studio Update. If you're looking for the best of the best, then go ahead and drop by this article to have your mind blown.
I Liked Smogon Curricula
Article: The Smog: Rejected Names
Issue: 1
Surviving Gengar Aficionados: Unknown
Although this was one of the articles that started it all, the more important thing to note here is that cookie found a way to sneak his name on this list again. Nonetheless, the list here is fantastic, including "Dialga Times" ("if you don't know why it's witty you're reading the wrong magazine") and "Smogon Curricula" (which really does make the most sense, if you think about it).
Anything by MoP
Article(s): MoP's Musings, MoP's Musings v.2, How To Fit In
Issue(s): 8, 16, 17
Family Friendly: No
Perhaps az put it best when he said "can we please not include anything by MoP in this article" (edited for decency). Unfortunately, this list would be simply incomplete without the contributions made by MoP (aka "Aeroblacktyl," who one fellow editor kindly pointed out should probably be "Aero-African-American-tyl"). Indeed, one cannot simply dismiss the laughs elicited by a MoP article. Viewer discretion advised.
Extreme Closet Pokemon
Article: How to Avoid Getting Caught
Issue: 6
Influence on VGC Turnouts: Estimated at 20%
Pretty much everyone on Smogon has the same sense of humor, and JabbaTheGriffin is no exception. This article hits close to home especially for your author, who still didn't even tell the competitive Pokemon community he played competitive Pokemon until just recently. Perhaps the best piece of advice here, however, is that in the end you will have to man up. You will get tagged in those VGC pics on Facebook, someone will recognize your voice from the Smogcast. And "if someone catches you in the middle of Fire Blasting a Scizor, act like there's nothing cooler."
Calculus Nerds Welcome
Article: Quantifying the Change in Damage from Attacking and Defensive EVs
Issue: 1
How Many Times Smarter X-Act is than Your Author: Lim (x->0) of 1/x
No list that contains facets of Smogon's contributional world would be complete without an entry from X-Act. Earlier, we said Rising_Dusk was a nerd. But seriously, this guy makes Rising_Dusk look like he's in the third grade asking to trade his turkey sandwich for someone else's goldfish. Certainly, Nintendo did not imagine when they were creating cute and cuddly monsters that someone would see the incentive to take the fourth derivative of the cosecant of the average HP stat with respect to EVs, or whatever black magic it is X-Act is doing here.
Jumpluff and Phillip7086 Win Tons of Awards Due to Badgeset and Femininity, Respectively
Article: Smog Awards 2010 Results
Issue: 14
whistle Winning a Tournament: Priceless
I'm basically out of stuff to say at this point, especially since an earlier article was so similar to this. We all know it's a popularity contest, but hey, it's still fun to see who's hot and who's not.
"I am Eternally Perplexed"
Article: Inside the Mind of: a Shoddy Moderator
Issue: 11
Setsuna's Word Count: 155
Think back to the time when Smogon still used Shoddy Battle, Scofield paid for the patent on the line "Use the Find tab" and all of its derivatives, and the points system on the ladder actually made sense. If you weren't there, it may come as a surprise to you that even then Smogon had problems with spammers and Brazilians. This article's inventive format and combination of helpfulness and humor certainly earns it a spot in the books (or at least this list).
The Advent of BW
Article: Featured Pokemon: Looking Back, Looking Forward
Issue: 12
Accuracy: Fair
With the release of a new generation, Smogon of course become busier than ever. It is only natural that we highlight the endless cycle of the Featured Pokemon articles and conclude this article with an article detailing how a generational change could shift the metagame so much. Indeed, we all have Pokemon, people, and even articles from Smogon that are close to our hearts; that, my friends, is what makes us a community.

Closing Thoughts

As we have hit 20 issues of the Smog, it is important that we recognize how far our humble magazine has truly come. Hopefully you have enjoyed looking back at some of these articles as much as I enjoyed compiling them! Going forward, The Smog looks to continue to grow exponentially as it has in the past few issues, and we've got plenty planned for you ahead. Our talented team of writers has dedicated these 20 previous issues to you, and rest assured that the next 20 issues of The Smog look to be even better. If you love reading the content we create, you are in for a field day. Almost all of it looks funny, fresh, informative, and plentiful! I know what you're thinking, and don't worry; there will still be articles about the Trading Card Games as well!

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