RODANNING It: How to Survive on Smogon Whilst Badgeless

By Rodan. Art by andrew3391.
« Previous Article Home Next Article »

Hello, I am RODAN. You probably know me for my chat roulette thread or my various witty musings. The fact of the matter is that I am a part of Smogon culture, without ever doing anything of relevance at all. There are a few ways to explain this phenomenon: apathy, laziness, and general tomfoolery—take your pick. I have managed to stay in the hearts and souls of nearly every (relevant) forum on Smogon. I have a few simple steps to start transforming you guys into an army of mini RODANs. I mean, if you like.

I am not a picky man.


IRC is the most important part of Smogon for socializing and is where the majority of ideas and friendships bloom. A special strategy that I have picked up is to try to weasel your way into every splinter channel. If you can manage to get in good with the channel owners or super mods / admins that frequent said chats, you are basically a god. Another pro tip is to avoid conflict—if you get involved with arguments over the internet, the other party will always regard you as an idiot and therefore alienate you from a group that you could be exploiting. My mantra is "The fence is always a good place to sit." Imagine this: let's say users _he_alkyries and _rux are having an argument on whether or not milking cows is humane or not. Do you REALLY wanna get involved in that? No. You just wanna sit back and watch user _he_alkyries crumble.


Wit used to be Smogon's primary export back in the golden age. While it has definitely been nearly removed from the site on numerous occasions (dare I mention the black hole of wit that was jonathanrp), wit is still heavily valued and is how you can have the most staying power possible. When I joined back in 2007, I was 11—the age before my central wit receptors had fully been implanted into my brain. I tried this game called "wittybot" and promptly got the shit kicked out of me by wittier users such as doomsday, thunda, and cookie. But I took it to heart and studied the patterns of these users, such as no caps ever and no punctuation unless it's sarcasm. Sometimes wit, when left untouched, will bloom into full-blown insanity. People's sense of humor will suddenly devolve into intentional typos and whatever "Overall B+" is. One of the cornerstones of wit is self deprecation. I would not be nearly as lovable if I wasn't fat, which is sad but it is a fact of life.


You wont get anywhere in life without kissing a little ass. I covered this to some extent in my first part, but I will be elaborating on it. There are a few ways to "get in" with users, such as: being nice, funny, and informative. Sometimes these backfire due to personality clashes, but if you are deft enough you will be able to overcome that obstacle. Another big way of accomplishing this is to get your feet wet. Try out every clique on Smogon to see which one fits you the best. Once you establish yourself within that group you may move on to even more exclusive splinter channels. It is in these channels that you tend to have the best conversations and build the strongest friendships. A downside to those channels though is that they will eventually die, and it's out of your control.

A while ago, let's say 2010, I was in a channel named #moo. This was my absolute favorite channel because I could talk to cool kids like askaninjask, johann, and asim every single day. But over time that channel slowly became lost to the sands of time, and even though I still interact with a fair amount of the users in that channel, it will never be the same vibe.


Every long standing user has some sort of quirk to their personality that they may or may not have embraced. Speaking personally here, I have changed gimmicks on multiple occasions throughout my Smogon career. The one that most people associate me with is Aaron Carter—who I irrationally love way too much. I had a tendency to spam links on IRC and over (rip), which let me assert my dominance. A few other of the major gimmicks from when I was around were things like reyscarface's raging over hax, and MrE's greetings and raging over League of Legends. Even though these have negative connotations, they are memorable and keep those users in the mind of the general public.


I mean c'mon, this goes without saying.

Also, if you think about making a Magikarp joke: don't.


Smogon is a big part of my life. I have been on it for many years and it basically raised me through my adolescence. With all that in mind, in order to even last on this site for more than a while it is essential to be passionate about what you do and what you like about the forum. I personally take the most interest in a forum, and although some things about it infuriate me I wouldn't prefer to frequent any other part of the site (rodan for mods 2013). Sometimes I get upset over how things are modded but that would not happen unless I truly cared. This is the most important step because without passion, you are basically a dead fish on the street or something.

All in all, it is kill or be killed on Smogon. Only the strongest will survive.

« Previous Article Home Next Article »