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An Introduction to Competitive Battling

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An Introduction to Competitive Battling

Post by polelover44 on Tue Feb 23, 2010 9:20 pm

What is competitive battling?
Welcome to the world of competitive Pokemon Battling! So, you've decided to lay aside your morals and pwn out there in the vast world of Pokemon? Good for you! You take your DS, and get into a random battle. You send out your awesome Dialga, and prepare to be destroyed, and... Your opponent 6-0s you with a Scizor. A SCIZOR! What? You had a Dialga! Why did Scizor's Brick Break do so much damage to Dialga? Why, after that, did Heatran die to Brick break to? And where did Scizor learn Bullet Punch? These questions - and more - will be answered in the following guide. But first, you must learn the three most important things in battling - apart from the moves, that is. EVs, IVs, and Natures.
What are EVs?
EVs, or Effort Values, are numbers that raise the stats of your Pokemon. These numbers aren't randomly there. YOU train them! But how? For every Pokemon you defeat, each pokemon involved in the battle, and each pokemon holding the item Exp. Share will receive a certain number of EVs. Every Pokemon gives out 1, 2, or 3 EVs in one particular stat upon being defeated. A list of Pokemon and the effort values they yield can be found here. The number of EVs you gain in battle can be enhanced in a number of ways. The first, and most important, is the Pokérus. The Pokerus is a special virus that every Pokemon can contract once. When a Pokemon with Pokerus is in your party, it can spread the infection to other Pokemon. The effect of this virus is that the Pokemon in question gains double the amount of EVs when in battle. After the Pokerus leaves, the Pokemon still gains double the EVs. There are also several items that can be used to add to the amount of EVs gained, and I will list them here:
The Macho Brace - Doubles the number of EVs a Pokemon gets, but halves the speed stat while in battle. Stacks with Pokerus
The Power Weight - Adds 4 to the HP Evs gained, but halves the speed stat while in battle
The Power Bracer - Same as weight with Attack
The Power Belt - Defense
The Power Lens - Special Attack
The Power Band - Special Defense
The Power Anklet - Speed

The Power items can be gotten at the Battle Tower for 16 Battle Points.
The Macho Brace can be gotten in one of four places:
Gift from Victoria Winstrate after the defeat of the whole family. (R/S/E).
Found under where Giovanni stands hidden in Viridian Pokémon Gym after defeating him. (FR/LG).
Gift from boy in Pastoria City after showing him all three forms of Burmy (D/P).
Gift from boy in Pastoria City after showing him both genders of Combee (Pt).

A Pokemon can have, at max, 510 EVs. For every 4 EVs gained, a Pokemon will, at level 100, have 1 stat point. The most a Pokemon can have in a single stat is 255. However, 252 is divisible by 4. 508 is the largest available number divisible by 4. In all, a single Pokemon can gain up to 127 total stat points.
What are IVs?
IVs, or Individual Values, are more numbers that decide the stats of a Pokemon. These numbers, however, are predetermined. They range from 0 - 31, and at level 100, each is equal to 1 stat. Pokemon with perfect IVs are very rare, and many people will think you used Pokesav to get perfect IVs.
More on IVs can be found here: http://www.serebii.net/games/ivs.shtml
How are natures helpful/unhelpful?
Natures. You never looked at them before, why should you look at them now? Natures add to or subtract from stats. Each nature will, at level 100, add 10% to one stat, and subtract 10% from another.
Here's a nature table: http://www.smogon.com/dp/natures/
How can I "class" Pokemon?
There are three main "classes" into which Pokemon fall: Sweepers, Tanks, and Walls.
Sweepers are Pokemon with high attack and/or special attack stats. They fall into two major categories: Bulky and Frail.
Bulky Sweepers:
Bulky sweepers are sweepers that also have reasonable defensive stats. Metagross is an example of such a sweeper. (80 Base HP, 130 Base Defense, 90 Base Special Defense, 135 Base Attack).
Frail Sweepers:
Frail Sweepers are fast sweepers that have little to no defensive stats whatsoever. Infernape is an example of such a sweeper. (108 Base Speed, 104 Base Attack and Special Attack).

Now that we have those, there are three more categories of Sweeper: Special, Physical, and Mixed.
Special Sweepers: These have exceptionally high Special Attack. Example: Heatran
Physical Sweepers: These have exceptionally high Attack: Example: Scizor
Mixed Sweepers: These have exceptionally high Attack and Special Attack. Example: Infernape.

A tank is a Pokemon with high defensive stats that also has decent offensive stats. Examples of tanks are Metagross (can also sweep), Tyranitar (can also sweep), and Dusknoir.

Walls are Pokemon that have high defensive stats and little to no offense. Skarmory, Blissey, and Cresselia are walls.
What Pokemon should I use?/What are tiers?
There are these things called "tiers." Tiers chronicle Pokemon based on 2 things: usage and how good they are. The tiers are as follows:
Uber - the Pokemon that are too powerful. Ubers include: Kyogre, Garchomp, and Dialga
OU - the Pokemon that are good in the metagame. OUs include: Scizor, Gyarados, Latias
BL - the "Borderline" tier between OU and UU
UU - Underused Pokemon. Pokemon that aren't good in the metagame, but aren't absolutely 100% horrible. UUs include: Clefable, Gallade, Milotic
NU - Neverused Pokemon. The ones that suck cock. NUs include: Kecleon, Tropius, Dunsparce (SHOULD BE UBER!!!!!)
Tiers can be found here: http://www.smogon.com/dp/tiers/
To build our imaginary team, we will take the 6 Pokemon on my current team (lolz)
The Pokemon are:
Metagross, Rotom-H, Vaporeon, Heracross, Snorlax, Latias
That's our mock team.
I have my 6 OU Pokemon, but I suck? Why? What moves should I have?
The problem is, you probably aren't using good moves. What's your moveset for Snorlax? Strength, Surf, Rock Climb, and Earthquake? I thought so.
I'm not posting the entire movesets here, but the team can actually be found: http://www.marriland.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=378887
For movesets you can go to: http://www.smogon.com/dp/pokemon/
Are there any rules for battling? If so, what are they?
There are several clauses that are used in standard battling. They stand as follows:
Evasion Clause
Moves that boost evasion (i.e. Double Team and Minimize) are not allowed.
Freeze Clause
Two or more Pokémon on a team cannot be frozen at the same time.
Sleep Clause
Two or more Pokémon on a team cannot be asleep at the same time. Self-induce sleep via rest does not activate Sleep Clause.
OHKO Clause
One-Hit KO moves are not allowed.
Species Clause
Two or more of the same Pokémon may not be used on the same team.
Self KO Clause
If both players have only one Pokémon left, moves which KO both the user and the opponent are not allowed (e.g. Explosion, Destiny Bond). If recoil damage would cause a tie, Self KO Clause does not activate, and the player who last attacked is the winner.

In addition, the following items are banned:
- Quick Claw
- Focus Band
- King's Rock
- Razor Claw
- Razor Fang
- Lax incense
There are more, I believe, but I'm not sure what they are.

Useful References:
http://www.smogon.com/dp/pokemon - lists every Pokemon. Click on the name and see many viable movesets for that Pokemon!
http://www.smogon.com/dp/articles - Articles about aspects of competitive play
http://www.smogon.com/dp/tiers - Tier list
http://www.marriland.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=363382 - Guide to Prediction in battle
http://www.marriland.com/phpbb/viewtopic.php?f=63&t=44318 - Guide to posting an RMT - (Rate My Team)
http://www.smogon.com/smog/ - helpful web-zine with things like metagame analysis, featured RMT, etc. For the more experienced members.

This guide isn't meant to get people to become amazing instantly. It's to get them to start the plunge into competitive battling, and hopefully increase the quality of RMTs, and posts in general, around here.


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