It's Out of Seasonal!

By Snaquaza. Art by Bummer.
« Previous Article Home Next Article »


An interesting in-game mechanic, the seasons, were introduced in Gen V as a way to significantly alter the overworld and the Pokémon that ap—

wait nvm

Now a common part of Pokémon Showdown!, the Seasonals are coded in by an admin named Joim every month, with each one being different from the last. They are similar to Random Battles in that random Pokémon are chosen from a specific pool of other Pokémon. Due to the exciting, different twists they have and the consistent ladder activity they foster, the fifteen formats have been incredibly popular since their heyday. So every Pokémon is forced to have Hurricane? Check. All Pokémon that switch in get confused? Check. Teams based on your name? Check. Moves changing typing in the middle of a battle? Check. The huge array of mechanics can be easily twisted to provide a very unique format with surprises that are sure to catch everyone off-guard!


Seasoning's Greetings - November 2012

Pool: Aerodactyl, Alakazam, Altaria, Archeops, Articuno, Beheeyem, Bellossom, Bisharp, Blissey, Braviary, Cacturne, Chatot, Conkeldurr, Crobat, Delibird, Dodrio, Electivire, Farfetch'd, Fearow, Gallade, Gardevoir, Golurk, Gothitelle, Hariyama, Hitmonchan, Hitmonlee, Hitmontop, Honchkrow, Hypno, Illumise, Infernape, Jynx, Landorus-Incarnate, Leavanny, Lilligant, Lopunny, Lucario, Ludicolo, Machamp, Magmortar, Mandibuzz, Medicham, Meloetta, Mienshao, Moltres, Mr. Mime, Noctowl, Pelipper, Pidgeot, Probopass, Roserade, Sableye, Sawk, Sigilyph, Skarmory, Snorlax, Spinda, Staraptor, Swanna, Swellow, Swoobat, Throh, Togekiss, Tornadus-Incarnate, Toxicroak, Unfezant, Volbeat, Weavile, Wobbuffet, Xatu, Zapdos

Centered around the month of Thanksgiving Feast, this Seasonal was the first incarnation of many to come, and it is simplistic in nature. There is a small whitelist of only level 100 Pokémon, with no other twists.

Flying-types are easily the Pokémon that dominated the most in the format, with Sigilyph being incredibly dangerous with its setup moves, Cosmic Power and Calm Mind, that allowed it to be able to shrug off hits easily from pretty much anything while annihilating foes with boosted Stored Powers. It can also stall out Dark-types with Psycho-Shifted burns. However, Pokémon such as Jynx, Sableye, and Gardevoir had access to Trick and Choice Scarf to disrupt the Flying-type totem. Zapdos and Articuno could also massively damage most of the format with their STAB moves, with Pokémon such as Blissey and Snorlax being the only ones that could reliably take them on.

Winter Wonderland - December 2012 and January 2013

Pool: Abomasnow, Articuno, Azelf, Azumarill, Beartic, Blissey, Bronzong, Castform, Chandelure, Chatot, Chimecho, Clefable, Cloyster, Cryogonal, Delibird, Dewgong, Exeggutor, Froslass, Glaceon, Glalie, Granbull, Jirachi, Jynx, Lapras, Lunatone, Mesprit, Miltank, Nidoking, Nidoqueen, Probopass, Raichu, Rapidash, Regice, Rotom-Frost, Sawsbuck, Snorlax, Stantler, Starmie, Swalot, Togekiss, Uxie, Vanilluxe, Victini, Walrein, Weavile, Wigglytuff

Lasting for 2 months, this format truly lived up to its name with its many Ice-types and permanent hail. What makes it special, though, is the ubiquity of the move Present. Due to many changed mechanics, there are a variety of effects that could occur when using the move, such as a 25% chance to make Present act as a physical 200 Base Power move! It also had a 5% chance to inflict the effects of Torment, Disable, Embargo, Curse, Leech Seed, Taunt, Telekinesis, Ingrain, or status-esque effects such as confusion, recharge, or partial-trapping of the foe.

As the format is infested with Ice-types, Pokémon such as Chandelure, Victini, and Rapidash heavily damaged them despite the lack of powerful Fire-type STAB options, resorting to using Flame Burst or Flame Charge. Jirachi, Bronzong, Snorlax, and Miltank were good choices that are sturdy enough to also stomach hits and handle notorious Stallrein-esque builds (Protect / Toxic / Substitute / Blizzard or Surf Walrein). Present served as more of a deterrent than anything, rendering Blissey mostly unviable and disrupting foes with Curse's great HP-draining effect, locking them with Ingrain and the partial-trapping effect.

Valentine Venture - February 2013

Pool: Alomomola+Luvdisc, Audino+Chansey, Braviary+Mandibuzz, Cherrim+Cherubi, Clefable+Jigglypuff, Clefairy+Wigglytuff, Cleffa+Igglybuff, Delcatty+Lopunny, Ditto+Porygon2, Exeggcute+Flaaffy, Finneon+Porygon, Gallade+Gardevoir, Glameow+Snubbull, Gorebyss+Huntail, Happiny+Mime Jr., Hoppip+Togepi, Illumise+Volbeat, Jynx+Lickitung, Kyurem-B+Kyurem-W, Latias+Latios, Lickilicky+Blissey, Lumineon+Corsola, Mew+Mesprit, Milotic+Gyarados, Mr.Mime+Smoochum, Nidoqueen+Nidoking, NidoranF+NidoranM, Nidorina+Nidorino, Pichu+Pachirisu, Plusle+Minun, Porygon-Z+Togekiss, Purugly+Beautifly, Rufflet+Vullaby, Skitty+Buneary, Skitty+Wailord, Slowbro+Slowking, Slowpoke+Shellder, Swoobat+Musharna, Tauros+Miltank, Togetic+Shaymin, Whismur+Wormadam, Woobat+Munna

This format was all about love! All Pokémon came in pairs and were preset to appear together. Many of these are seen as pairs in the Pokémon universe already, with some… awkward ones. More often than not, they still shared a typing. Most other cases linked Pokémon together through evolution stages and the generation they were introduced. These pairs were randomly generated and appear together in the team. The first and second Pokémon on your team were a pair, the third and fourth Pokémon were a pair, and the final two Pokémon were a pair. There are many Pokémon that can learn a kissing move or represent love. There are a lot of baby Pokémon, resembling the symbol of love. All Pokémon that learned a kissing move or Attract always had those in their moveset. This means nearly all Pokémon had Attract, unless they had one of the other kissing moves. Lovely Kiss had priority over Sweet Kiss, which had priority over Attract.

Finally, this Seasonal was based on the doubles format. This means all the Pokémon pairs can battle together. Don't worry though, they can still battle individually. There are a lot of Normal-types in this format, so Fighting-type moves are extremely potent. The only users are the Buneary line, so they're quite powerful in this format. Strangely, Corsola also shines for the same reason, though it has to watch out for its many weaknesses. The many support Normal-types are quite mediocre since doubles is quite fast paced and it's better to hit the foes as hard as possible!

Spring Forward - March 2013

Pool: Absol, Axew, Azumarill, Azurill, Bagon, Basculin, Bayleef, Beedrill, Bellossom, Bellsprout, Breloom, Bronzong, Bronzor, Budew, Bulbasaur, Buneary, Burmy, Cacnea, Cacturne, Carnivine, Carvanha, Cascoon, Caterpie, Celebi, Cherrim, Chikorita, Cottonee, Cradily, Cubone, Dodrio, Doduo, Dragonite, Druddigon, Duosion, Dustox, Electrike, Eelektross, Espeon, Flygon, Fraxure, Gallade, Garbodor, Gardevoir, Gloom, Golbat, Golett, Golurk, Grimer, Grotle, Grovyle, Gulpin, Hitmonlee, Honchkrow, Hoppip, Huntail, Ivysaur, Jellicent, Kabuto, Kakuna, Kecleon, Kingler, Latios, Larvitar, Leafeon, Lileep, Lilligant, Lombre, Lopunny, Lotad, Ludicolo, Machamp, Machoke, Mankey, Maractus, Marill, Marowak, Masquerain, Meganium, Metapod, Mewtwo, Minun, Mr.Mime, Muk, Murkrow, Natu, Nidoqueen, Oddish, Pansage, Pelipper, Petilil, Pidove, Politoed, Poliwrath, Rayquaza, Reuniclus, Roselia, Roserade, Salamence, Sandshrew, Sceptile, Scyther, Seismitoad, Serperior, Servine, Shaymin, Shaymin-S, Shelgon, Simisage, Skiploom, Snivy, Solosis, Spinarak, Sunflora, Swadloon, Swellow, Taillow, Tangela, Tangrowth, Tauros, Teddiursa, Tornadus-I, Tornadus-T, Torterra, Tranquill, Treecko, Tropius, Trubbish, Turtwig, Tyranitar, Unfezant, Ursaring, Venusaur, Venusaur, Vibrava, Victreebel, Vileplume, Virizion, Weepinbell, Whimsicott, Wormadam-Plant, Xatu, Yanmega, Zubat

This Seasonal was based around spring. There are lots of green and flower Pokémon, which results in a lot of Grass-types. There are also egg-based Pokémon, resembling Easter. For the same reason, every Pokémon got an egg-based move: Barrage, Soft-Boiled, or Egg Bomb. Egg Bomb and Barrage have been buffed massively so they weren't useless. Another group of Pokémon that was been added for Easter are the bunny-like Pokémon. This Seasonal also celebrated St. Patrick's Day, which is all about fun, drinking, and luck! To start, all green Pokémon were confused upon entering the battle. All Pokémon had the ability Serene Grace or Super Luck to emphasize luck and all the chances on a critical hit were raised! Finally, all battles had a 75% chance of having heavy rain at the start of the battle, resembling March and April showers.

Grass-types are extremely common in this Seasonal. This made Flying types like Unfezant, Swellow, and Crobat extremely useful. Otherwise, the format is largely luck based. Players could always call a move by using Metronome and, of course, the fact that a lot of Pokémon entered the battle confused didn't help either.

Fools Festival - April 2013

Pool: Abomasnow, Amoonguss, Arceus-Grass, Bellossom, Breloom, Cacturne, Carnivine, Celebi, Cradily, Exeggutor, Ferrothorn, Gastly, Gengar, Gliscor, Haunter, Illumise, Jumpluff, Koffing, Leafeon, Liepard, Lilligant, Ludicolo, Magikarp, Maractus, Meganium, Missingno., Murkrow, Pansage, Parasect, Psyduck, Purrloin, Riolu, Roserade, Rotom-Fan, Rotom-Heat, Rotom-Mow, Sableye, Sawsbuck, Sceptile, Serperior, Shaymin, Shaymin-Sky, Shiftry, Slowbro, Slowking, Slowpoke, Spinda, Tangrowth, Thundurus, Tornadus, Torterra, Tropius, Venusaur, Victreebel, Vileplume, Virizion, Volbeat, Weezing, Whimsicott, Wormadam, Zoroark, Zorua

This Seasonal was another reference to spring, but also to April Fools' day, 4/20, and poetry month. This means there were a lot of jokes, trolls, and luck in the game. All Pokémon had a 20% chance of getting the ability Illusion and 40% chance of getting Prankster andPokémon that get it naturally had a chance of appearing. Additionally, all moves had a 40% chance of changing to a random type! 4/20 gives this format some "stoned" Pokémon, which got +1 defenses and -1 Speed upon switching in. Then there's a purely aesthetic change for the poetry month: whenever a Pokémon fainted, a haiku appeared in the chat, which could be about various topics. To celebrate the poetry month, all Pokémon had either Charm or Attract and would use pickup lines whenever using one of these moves! Spring caused the weather to be extreme: 65% chance of rain, 30% chance of sun, and a minor 5% chance of hail! There were also a lot of Grass-types to resemble spring! Finally, April is symbolized by the diamond, so Dialga might appear as well.

There's quite some variety in this Seasonal but Grass-types are by far the most abundant! Again, this format gave a boost to Pokémon that could hit Grass-types super effectively. Shaymin-S was especially great in this format, as there were few Pokémon that could outspeed it; mostPokémon were easily KOed by its Air Slash and the rest probably took hefty damage through a combination of Air Slash and Seed Flare. Notice that there's still a lot of luck involved. Moves might randomly change type, so you could never be sure what you're using; a move might not have been very effective or super effective randomly! Finally, you had to remember to check if any of your abilities changed at the start of the battle. Playing Illusion and Prankster well may have helped you win.

May Mayhem - May 2013

Pool: Aerodactyl, Ambipom, Arbok, Arceus-Ghost, Beautifly, Blaziken, Blissey, Budew, Celebi, Chandelure, Chatot, Cherrim, Clefable, Clefairy, Cofagrigus, Combee, Crobat, Deoxys, Drapion, Drifblim, Dusclops, Dusknoir, Duskull, Espeon, Ferrothorn, Gastrodon, Genesect, Gengar, Giratina, Glaceon, Gliscor, Grimer, Grumpig, Hitmonchan, Hydreigon, Jellicent, Jirachi, Joltik, Kangaskhan, Kricketot, Kricketune, Liepard, Loudred, Ludicolo, Magcargo, Manaphy, Mareep, Marowak, Meloetta, Muk, Munchlax, Nidoking, Piloswine, Politoed, Rhydon, Rhyhorn, Rhyperior, Roselia, Roserade, Rotom, Rattata, Sableye, Sawk, Skitty, Spiritomb, Sudowoodo, Surskit, Swalot, Venomoth, Venusaur, Wartortle, Weezing, Yamask

May's Seasonal was based on loads of events. It had influences from spring, the Remembrance of the Dead Day, Star Wars Day, Music Month, Mother's Day, and a few other minor events like Sock's Holiday, Save the Rhino Day, Jumping Frog Jubilee, National Escargot Day, and Peace Day. All of these events caused some Pokémon to be added that fit the event, like characters which fit those of Star Wars, some snails for Escargot Day, and Pokémon that are well known for being a mother. Addtionally, Pokémon used by May in the anime are added too, because it's all about May! There are few added mechanics, but Pokémon usually held a Metronome to celebrate the month of music or a berry, as they are very common in the spring.

There were not a lot of special rules, so it was fairly similar to Random Battles. You had to try to find out what your win condition could be and scout the opponent's team! There was an above-average amount of Ghost-types, so entry hazards were even more useful, as it was harder to remove them.

June Jubilee - June 2013

Pool: Accelgor, Arceus-Bug, Ariados, Armaldo, Aurumoth, Beautifly, Beedrill, Bellossom, Blastoise, Butterfree, Castform, Charizard, Cherrim, Crawdaunt, Crustle, Delcatty, Delibird, Drifblim, Durant, Dustox, Escavalier, Exeggutor, Floatzel, Forretress, Galvantula, Genesect, Groudon, Heracross, Ho-oh, Illumise, Jumpluff, Keldeo, Kingler, Krabby, Kricketune, Krillowatt, Landorus, Lapras, Leavanny, Ledian, Lilligant, Ludicolo, Lunatone, Machamp, Machoke, Machop, Magmar, Magmortar, Malaconda, Manaphy, Maractus, Masquerain, Meganium, Meloetta, Moltres, Mothim, Ninetales, Ninjask, Parasect, Pelipper, Pikachu, Pinsir, Politoed, Raichu, Rapidash, Reshiram, Rhydon, Rhyperior, Roserade, Rotom-Fan, Rotom-Heat, Rotom-Mow, Sawsbuck, Scizor, Scolipede, Shedinja, Shuckle, Slaking, Snorlax, Solrock, Starmie, Sudowoodo, Sunflora, Syclant, Tentacool, Tentacruel, Thundurus, Tornadus, Tropius, Vanillish, Vanillite, Vanilluxe, Venomoth, Venusaur, Vespiquen, Victreebel, Vileplume, Volbeat, Volcarona, Wailord, Wormadam-Plant, Wormadam-Sandy, Wormadam-Trash, Yanmega

The first Seasonal influenced by the summer! After a swarm of spring-based Seasonals, we were up for a change. Talking about swarms, they're common in the summer. This causes a lot of Bug-types to be able to appear in this Seasonal, along with a lot of Pokémon affiliated with the summer. The real change in this Seasonal was a special mechanic, though: you had to guide a Delibird and prevent it from dying. The Delibird got stuck in the United States and you had to help it reach northern areas. You lost if it died! While the battle went on, you'd slowly advance up north and there will be changes in the weather, as the further north you go, the colder it gets.

This is another Seasonal with a bunch of Pokémon weak to Fire and Flying, as there are a lot of Bug- and Grass-types are commonly related to the summer. Fire-types like Ninetales could be a problem, so you had to make sure to check at the start of the battle which Pokémon on your team resisted Fire and Flying you have, so you could prevent yourself from getting swept. Also, you had to take a look at Bug's and Grass's other weaknesses, as you might have a weakness to them as well. These Bug- and Grass-types made Delibird more useful than normally, though, as it could KO a lot of them, especially with Hustle, priority, and super effective STAB moves. You had to watch out and not play it if you didn't have to, as it might have caused you to lose the game.

Jolly July - July 2013

Pool: Alomomola, Arcanine, Arceus-Fire, Basculin, Beautifly, Beedrill, Blastoise, Blaziken, Bouffalant, Braviary, Camerupt, Carracosta, Castform, Celebi, Chandelure, Charizard, Charmander, Charmeleon, Cherrim, Chimchar, Combusken, Corsola, Crawdaunt, Crustle, Cyndaquil, Darmanitan, Darumaka, Drifblim, Emboar, Entei, Escavalier, Exeggutor, Fearow, Ferrothorn, Flareon, Galvantula, Genesect, Groudon, Growlithe, Hariyama, Heatmor, Heatran, Heracross, Hitmonchan, Hitmonlee, Hitmontop, Honchkrow, Ho-oh, Houndoom, Houndour, Infernape, Jirachi, Jumpluff, Kingler, Kricketune, Lampent, Lanturn, Lapras, Larvesta, Leafeon, Leavanny, Ledian, Lilligant, Litwick, Lunatone, Magby, Magcargo, Magmar, Magmortar, Mantine, Meganium, Miltank, Moltres, Monferno, Murkrow, Ninetales, Numel, Omastar, Pansear, Pignite, Politoed, Poliwrath, Ponyta, Primeape, Quilava, Raikou, Rapidash, Reshiram, Rotom-Fan, Rotom-Heat, Rotom-Mow, Rotom-Wash, Scizor, Scyther, Sharpedo, Sigilyph, Simisear, Skarmory, Slugma, Solrock, Stantler, Staraptor, Stoutland, Suicune, Sunflora, Swoobat, Tauros, Tepig, Thundurus, Thundurus-T, Torchic, Torkoal, Toxicroak, Tropius, Typhlosion, Venomoth, Venusaur, Vespiquen, Victini, Victreebel, Vileplume, Volcarona, Vulpix, Wailord, Whimsicott, Xatu, Yanmega, Zapdos, Zebstrika, Zoroark

Jolly July focused on traveling around the world. The Pokémon are themed as such, with a plethora of Fire- and Bug-type Pokémon to choose from. You essentially had 2 ways of beating your opponent: you could either knock out all of their Pokémon, or you could finishtraveling around the world first. The latter means that there is a hidden value, based on your Pokémon's Speed stat. This hidden valuecaused the battle to end after a certain amount of turns. This means it was to your advantage if you had fast Pokémon, since it was possible to just stall the battle and win by standard methods, so moves like Substitute and Protect were handy. You also had a set partner Pokémon, which traveled the world with you. This Pokémon wasdetermined by your username, so you might have wanted to test with a few different names before selecting one to play with; this Pokémon could be any Pokémon, not only from the above list! The other five Pokémon were generated randomly from the normal pool ofPokémon.

Nearly all Pokémon that appeared wereFire- or Bug-type though quite some Flying-types appeared too. This made it very important to set up Stealth Rock as soon as possible, as many Pokémon lose a large part of their HP upon switching in. The few Water-types in the format were great as well! Blastoise could spin away the previously mentioned Stealth Rocks, causing it to be a great supporter to the rest of your team, while also having good defenses and a lot of opportunities to come in. Another influential Water-type was Alomomola, since its enormous bulk let it take on the many Fire-types as well as most of the physical Pokémon in the format. Additionally, therewere few Pokémon which resist Water. Finally the lead you had was extremely important. Having a lead that covered common weaknesses, the ability to set up or deter entry hazards was extremely powerful and could have won you the game. Good leads can prevent you from getting swept or help you support the team.

Average August - August 2013

Pool 1: Alakazam, Arbok, Arcanine, Arceus-Fire, Bibarel, Bisharp, Blaziken, Blissey, Cacturne, Chandelure, Chansey, Charizard, Cloyster, Conkeldurr, Druddigon, Electivire, Emboar, Entei, Exploud, Gardevoir, Genesect, Golurk, Groudon, Hariyama, Heatran, Infernape, Jellicent, Lilligant, Lucario, Luxray, Machamp, Machoke, Machop, Magmortar, Meloetta, Onix, Poliwrath, Primeape, Smeargle, Snorlax, Toxicroak, Typhlosion, Weezing

Pool 2: Absol, Arceus-Flying, Cofagrigus, Crobat, Darkrai, Delibird, Dragonite, Ducklett, Garchomp, Gengar, Golem, Gothitelle, Honchkrow, Krookodile, Kyogre, Landorus, Ludicolo, Mandibuzz, Pelipper, Pidgeot, Pidgey, Sableye, Scizor, Scyther, Sharpedo, Shiftry, Skarmory, Staraptor, Swanna, Thundurus, Thundurus-Therian, Tornadus, Tornadus-Therian, Tyranitar, Volcarona, Wailord, Weavile, Whimsicott, Wingull, Zoroark

The focus of this rain-heavy doubles format edged on finishing battles as quickly as possible, with Perish Song being activated for each individual Pokémon each time it switched in. You got Pokémon from either two sides: Groudon's Sailors or Kyogre's Pirates, with your opponent having the other team.

The Pirates all had Hurricane in their moveset while also sporting the Thick Fat ability to further resist the Fire-type moves thrown around by the opposing team. While it seems like a one-sided battle, the Sailors were blessed with two ability choices that severely hampered the opposing team's chances of winning: Water Absorb stops any attempt to muscle through the team with rain-boosted attacks, while Tinted Lens removed any resists due to all of these Pokémon having access to powerful V-creates that could further be boosted by sunlight! Winning the game depended on successful switches to preserve your weather while also countering the Perish Song timer incurred on the switch in; setup was basically impossible due to confusion-inducing Hurricanes and defense-piercing V-creates being thrown around in every corner!

School Schemes—September 2013

Pool: All 649 Pokémon available in Gen V

This format was vastly different from others in that teams were determined solely by usernames! Users here would duke it out by simply conforming to their teams or cycling through random names until something decent popped up. Additionally, items that evoke a theme of fashion such as Binding Band, Black Belt, BlackGlasses, Choice Band, Choice Scarf, Choice Specs, Destiny Knot, Expert Belt, Focus Sash, King's Rock, Macho Brace, Muscle Band, Mystic Water, Rocky Helmet, Silk Scarf, Wide Lens, Wise Glasses, and Zoom Lens were incorporated into the game.

The battles edged mostly on luck more than anything else. Apart from the Pokémon, all of the aforementioned items were randomly assigned, so you could end up with oddities such as Choice Scarf Ferrothorn, Destiny Knot Mew, and Mystic Water Heatran. Additionally, Missingno. could be generated as part of your team (it has stats and preset moves; check /data on PS!) at any given time. Finally, glitches that were later fixed arose from those Pokémon with multiple formes, which would give people either a massive disadvantage with teams that contained four Castform or a big win condition with three Arceus.

Octoberfest - October 2013

Pool: Absol, Alakazam, Banette, Beheeyem, Bellossom, Bisharp, Blissey, Cacturne, Carvanha, Chandelure, Cofagrigus, Conkeldurr, Crawdaunt, Darkrai, Deino, Drapion, Drifblim, Drifloon, Dusclops, Dusknoir, Duskull, Electivire, Frillish, Froslass, Gallade, Gardevoir, Gastly, Gengar, Giratina, Golett, Golurk, Gothitelle, Hariyama, Haunter, Hitmonchan, Hitmonlee, Hitmontop, Honchkrow, Houndoom, Houndour, Hydreigon, Hypno, Infernape, Jellicent, Jynx, Krokorok, Krookodile, Lampent, Leavanny, Liepard, Lilligant, Litwick, Lopunny, Lucario, Ludicolo, Machamp, Magmortar, Mandibuzz, Medicham, Meloetta, Mienshao, Mightyena, Misdreavus, Mismagius, Mr. Mime, Murkrow, Nuzleaf, Pawniard, Poochyena, Probopass, Purrloin, Roserade, Rotom, Sableye, Sandile, Sawk, Scrafty, Scraggy, Sharpedo, Shedinja, Shiftry, Shuppet, Skuntank, Sneasel, Snorlax, Spiritomb, Stunky, Throh, Toxicroak, Tyranitar, Umbreon, Vullaby, Weavile, Wobbuffet, Yamask, Zoroark, Zorua, Zweilous

A month of pranking people and egging other's houses wouldn't be complete without Oktoberfest and Halloween! That's what this format's focus was about, with Dark- and Ghost-types dominating the tier. There were also a few humanoid Pokémon here and there! The changes here were relatively simple, with Present being renamed to Offer Beer and Trick sporting a variety of effects that would help the user or cripple the opponent.

Having Shedinja is basically starting the battle 5-6 and, due to the abundance of evil elements, the poor Psychic-types in the tier could really only abuse the effects that Trick could inflict, which solely relies on the RNG. Substitute proved to be a dangerous move that could block both of the changed moves and was important in preventing status, creating notorious abusers such as Murkrow and Liepard. Roserade also stood out if you were able to get their hands on one with Toxic Spikes, which shortened the lives of sweepers and walls alike due to a general lack of Poison-types and clerics.

Thankless Thanksgiving – November 2013

Pool: All 718 Pokémon available at the time

This format saw the addition of the new Gen VI Pokémon that were running around and also scaled levels similar to tiers in Random Battle… these were the only worthwhile additions to the format. At the time of its inception, many Pokémon still had stats that were approximations / estimates; human-ability was relied on due to an inability of viewing the in-game data. This created some oddities, such as Zygarde's titanic bulk due to having the same Base Stat Total as Xerneas and Yveltal. The format was mostly for exploring the new Pokémon that people still hadn't tried out, so presently it works as a clone of Random Battles with pre-evolutions.

Christmas Charade – December 2013

Pool: Abomasnow, Amaura, Articuno, Aurorus, Avalugg, Azelf, Azumarill, Beartic, Bergmite, Blissey, Bronzong, Castform, Chandelure, Chatot, Chimecho, Clefable, Cloyster, Cryogonal, Delibird, Dewgong, Exeggutor, Froslass, Gardevoir, Glaceon, Glalie, Granbull, Jirachi, Jynx, Lapras, Lunatone, Mesprit, Miltank, Nidoking, Nidoqueen, Probopass, Raichu, Rapidash, Regice, Rotom-Frost, Sawsbuck, Snorlax, Stantler, Starmie, Swalot, Togekiss, Uxie, Vanilluxe, Victini, Walrein, Weavile, Wigglytuff

It was that time of the year again where families gather under Abomasnow and Delibird delivers presents, and this format largely follows what was done in the last inception of this holiday. Permanent hail once again dominated the skies, and Present had a myriad of effects that were a bit different from last time (some that didn't even do anything!). The emphasis was on Ice-type Pokémon, which Pokémon such as Victini ate for breakfast.

Winter's Wont - January 2014

Pool: Random assortment of winter-themed Pokémon

Winter's Wont allowed Pokémon to be up to level 150! All of the Pokémon were 50 level higher than the normal levels in random battles, so if the Pokémon was level 74, it would be level 124 now. This format was played in doubles, so the battles were quick paced and there were way more situations you can encounter. Another large change was the type chart: everything was inversed. Resistances became weaknesses, weakness became resistances, and immunities became weaknesses. Finally, it was always hailing. Pack Ice-type attacks, since they're the only super effective attacks against the common Ice-type Pokémon. You couldn't be fooled and preserve Fighting-, Fire-, Steel- and Rock-types since they're actually mediocre against Ice-types with the type chart inversed. That's also the main change in this Seasonal and you had to always watch out that you don't get confused by the type chart. Always consider if it's actually super effective in here!

Fabulous February - February 2014

Pool: Random assortment of Pokémon themed according to the Chinese New Year

This was a very mysterious Seasonal. All that's known about it is that it was Chinese New Year themed and was in the doubles format, but otherwise, it's not known which Pokémon appeared in there or if there was any new mechanic. This was the last one made before Joim left temporarily and closed the first generation of Seasonals.

Theorymon OU

This was the temporary ladder that replaced the Seasonals for a while. It first started out as a thread on the forums where users would "theorymon" Pokémon with one potential move or ability for one week. Users would make nominations, and then a slated pool of Pokémon was put up for extensive discussion about their effects in the OU metagame. Afterwards, a voting slate was announced, and the Pokémon that won would be playable on the ladder with its new toy. At the end of each month, the ladder was then effectively reset and the process repeated. While the ladder has ceased to exist, the thread is still ongoing to this day.


The Seasonals can be simply described as surprising and fun. They are always special Random Battle variants with twists and unexpected quirks that throw off players and make them explore the varied Seasonals with more detail. Sadly, Joim went away for a while after February 2014 and made the acclaimed formats nonexistent. However, he's recently returned and revived the Seasonals in a much more dynamic way. How will these compare to the ones in the past? Time will only tell as they are developed in the coming months. Stay tuned for the second coming of these rage-inducing formats.

« Previous Article Home Next Article »