Why Choose Doubles For Gen 6?

By Audiosurfer. Art by Bummer.
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If you've been coming onto the forums in recent months, you may have noticed that Doubles has recently received its own onsite subforum, as well as a subforum in Uncharted Territory. However, if you're like most users, you've likely never bothered to venture into the world of double battling. Whether you find it unfamiliar, dislike double battles, or simply lack interest, you've probably interacted with the metagame little if at all. However, I'm here to bring you a list of reasons as to why you should get involved this Gen.

1) Fast-paced and fun

Doubles is an incredibly fast-paced metagame compared to singles, with games rarely lasting more than 15 turns. Due to the fact that you can have twice as many Pokémon out on the field as in a singles match, a lot can happen in a turn, making games more dynamic and exciting. However, it doesn't necessarily mean that the metagame is more offensive, as defensive strategies have been known to be effective in the past at winning games even with the short game spans. The addition of an extra Pokémon on each side can also make for many more interesting dimensions to strategy than in most singles games, with more strategies and potential moves being possible.

2) Vast amount of Pokémon

Doubles has the largest amount of Pokémon available in a non-Ubers tier. What this translates into is a much wider variety of Pokémon than the average metagame, meaning that things rarely get stale and there's always new stuff to discover. In addition, due to the abundance of moves with little application in singles but large value in doubles, such as Helping Hand and Trick Room, as well as the way interaction between Pokémon is changed by having two Pokémon out at once, it's much easier for Pokémon to find niches that they might not have had in Singles. Doubles is a tier where lesser-used Pokémon can be just as useful as the tier's heavyweights, so if you're tired of all your teams looking alike, you should give Doubles a try!

3) Easy to pick up

While many people feel intimidated at the thought of diving headfirst into the world of double battling, the reality is that the entry barrier to learn is much smaller than it was in the past. Since the tier's creation, there are now more experienced players and many resources both in the Doubles subforum and on #doubles, the metagame's official IRC channel, all designed and willing to help you improve on your journey through the tier. If you're unwilling or unable to make your own team, there are great teams available for you to try (with more being posted every day) in the RMT section, so you can quickly and easily try out the tier. And in the future, initiatives such as Doubles tutoring and Doubles Smogcasts will give you even more options to learn more about the tier. When it comes to learning about Doubles, there's no time like the present.

4) Recently made official

The fact that Doubles has now become official means that there are many benefits to getting involved with the metagame now, namely more support. Whereas before Doubles mainly consisted of a few threads in the Other Metagames subforum, now Doubles has its own subforum and C&C Forum, and will likely branch out into other areas of the site as it grows and expands. This will also mean that with the new-found Smogon support, more forum projects, Doubles tournaments, and other initiatives could become a reality. While it is the newest official metagame on the site, thanks to the two month transition period it underwent, there's already a strong framework in place for potential ways to expand the tier and make it even more enjoyable. In short, it's a better time than ever to be a Doubles player.

5) Easier to get into than VGC

While VGC is a fantastic metagame in its own right with plenty of great players and resources, the fact remains that most of these resources are better found on other sites than Smogon. This makes it difficult to get into the metagame for those Smogonites looking to try double battling out. In addition, things such as 4v4, the shift in levels, and its emphasis on cartridge play and real life events instead of online simulators can make it daunting at times for those not experienced with it or those who can't commit to attending tournaments. The fact that the Doubles metagame already has a strong presence on Smogon as well as the fact that it is more similar to other Smogon metagames makes it an easier tier to get involved with than VGC, meaning that if you've ever wanted to get involved with double battling but never knew how, Doubles presents a fantastic opportunity.

6) Good training for future VGC events

While some of the past points might make it seem as if Doubles has little value as a metagame to those already involved in VGC, there's still some good reasons to give it a try. For the most part, the first few regionals will be BW2 still, and even when XY regionals start to roll out, they're widely speculated to be Kalos only, meaning that many important Pokémon still won't be usable at events. By playing in the Doubles metagame, you get a chance to test out Pokémon and strategies that won't be focused on as much in VGC at first, which can give you an edge in future events and help to increase your understanding of the metagame when others might be going blind.

7) Ready right from the start

With the start of XY, many players will be left out as UU, RU, and NU must wait to be tiered before those metagames can start up for XY. However, due to the fact that Doubles tiering is independent of any other tier, it's ready right from the start of XY. That means that for those eager to get involved, there's no period of downtime that you have to wait through before you can, as Doubles projects and games are already up and running. In addition, for those players of lower tiers who are now in search of something to do while waiting, Doubles is a great opportunity to try something new and fun while you count down the time for your metagame of choice to start back up. And who knows? You might even enjoy it so much you decide to stick around!


While Doubles is often considered strange territory for many players on the site, thanks to all the resources there's no reason for it to remain so. The tier has come a long way since its inception, and is more fun and competitive than ever! With increased support for the tier and more incentives to try it out such as more forum projects and tournaments involving it, there's no reason to not hop on the ladder or join #doubles to give it a try. You might even find yourself loving it! As the saying goes, good things come in pairs.

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