[CENTER][B]SV OU Metagame Discussion Interview - Vert[/B] [ATTACH type="full" alt="9f4ecdd7-10ee-4667-bfb8-694ed25483c1.png"]512438[/ATTACH] [B]Hello Everyone, I hope you're having a splendid day.[/B] Today, I am joined by none other than @Vert. Vert recently won the 19th edition of OST. He has been a heavy innovator for this current generation of OU. He has bought cores like Ting LU + Glimorra to the forefront and popularized different Sun Variants. Vert is also known for his fiery posts on the forum that certainly shows his passion for the tier. [Hide=Interview] NJNP: Vert thank you for taking the time to talk to me and allowing this conversation to be viewed by the larger ou player base. You’ve just won OST an amazing feat. You’ve had SV around your finger for majority of this generation from innovating Glimmora Ting Lu Offense, making Brute Bonnet Sun pop off, and by making a million different shed tail teams. What direction do you see the tier heading in now with the recent shed tail quick ban? [I]Vert: Yo! Thanks for having me bro! Sadly I don't expect the metagame to change much. The only relevant metagame shift we're seeing is Garganacl rising back to dominance; this should be no surprise now that the broken singularity called shed tail has been banned. I'm struggling to find consistent counter-play to this 'mon outside of Grass Knot Amoonguss and Covert Cloak Gholdengo w/ BOTH Nasty plot + Thunderbolt. Hydreigon is good too, but it's only a check as it can never come in hard on Salt Cure. You can advocate for other checks like substitute + nasty plot Rotom-W, but the reality is this is a bad set-- no Volt Switch or status move. Please run that dogshit vs me kek, substitute Skeledirge is another clown set. Now that Garganacl usage has skyrocketed again, you'd assume Smogon tour players would switch Will-O-Wisp + Hex back to Substitute + Shadow Ball, right? Nope, it seems that the player base has finally realized this has always been a cringe metagame adaption with horrible match-up coverage vs anything, not Garganacl. A- on VR makes sense when you're running garbage like that. [URL='https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen9ou-688706']However, I've seen worse such as @ima using infestation + night shade Dragapult[/URL].[/I] NJNP: As I mentioned earlier you won OST. You powered your way easily through rounds with a heavily offensive selection. What made you lean that playstyle during your ost run and what was your mindset/prep like for most of the tournament?[/CENTER] [I] Vert: Offense just gets the job in SV due to how much pressure the combination of hazards, shed tail, and booster 'mons apply to common team structures. While I did spam a lot of shed tail during the tournament, I also varied up my team selection at times to avoid being predictable/getting counter-team'd. Some of these include the classic Scream Tail + Dondozo squad, Electric Terrain, and Sun. Especially Sun, I'm a big fan of it even though it can be a difficult archetype to pilot. Re: your 2nd question on mindset & prep - I am not going to lie. I am a big procrastinator. You can attest to this yourself haha, we literally built what I was going to use for OST finals only a couple hours before the match. Generally, I'll pick one set I feel is good vs my opponent, then fill in the blanks. Going for all-out counter-teams is rarely worth it and will backfire more times than help.[/I] [CENTER] NJNP: Definitely understand leaning heavy ho during the Shed Tail era of SV. Definitely gave you all the tools for most matchups, currently though, how do you feel about the state of offensive archetypes with Shed Tail banned? Vert: [I]Offense is still good. It is very very VERY one-dimensional however, even more so than the Shed Tail metagame. At least back then you were able to use creative shit via the free turn Shed Tail gave you. I think it'd be extremely short-sighted to not look at some of these defensive behemoths and say they are not a factor when it comes to the tier's linear state. Obviously, there is the aforementioned Garganacl, but Ting-Lu is another ridiculous 'mon that I find impossible to chip significantly vs competent players without using a Tera that compounds stab or boosts coverage. And kids want to full ban the mechanic so this thing can wall even more shit....Iron Valiant's super-effective stab Moonblast does 38% for christ's sake. The unaware 'mons introduced this generation are a major culprit as well. Playing poorly around SD LO Weavile in Gen 8, for example, results in a kill, then significant progress vs unaware Clefable or Quagsire as they have poor stats. Nowadays, there are no repercussions for fucking around threats, because not only do SV's unaware pussies have 150/115/65 stat distributions, but they are all splashable 'mons that are amazing outside of Stall. Yes, Dondozo in particular I find to be very lame and heavily restricts the amount of viable options when it comes to building offense. Obviously, no one can predict the future & I bet there will be some fresh offenses/HO's to arise in the coming weeks, but there is definitely a reason people have been recycling the same cores like Kingambit + Iron Valiant or Iron Moth + Roaring Moon on every team. A lot of "creative picks" will lose you more games than win due to their horrible match-up into some of the dominant team structures such as Ting-Lu Dragapult, Garganacl Skeledirge, or Scream tail Dondozo. No one wants to use a fuckin' Iron Thorns and do 30% to Great Tusk with +1 ice punch bro. I am not implying the shed tail ban was a mistake. Nor am I implying that Garganacl, Dondozo, Great Tusk, or Ting-lu should be banned. These are just my observations from using offense this past week & watching the most recent Smogon Tour; interpret them however you'd like.[/I] [/CENTER] NJNP: Well, have there been any tiering mistakes? Do you feel anything currently should be suspected? [CENTER] [I]Vert: There have been no tiering mistakes so far. Garganacl and Roaring Moon should be closely monitored, but I don't think either are ban-worthy. The Walking Wake result has changed the definition of what "broken" means in SV.[/I] [/CENTER] NJNP: What do you mean by changed the definition? What does broken mean to you personally in SV? Vert: [I]For me "broken" in SV is when a Pokemon's sole counter-play is limited to either: (a) Bad Pokemon-- Dachsbun for Chi-Yu, Blissey for iron bundle (b) Defensive Terastilization-- Tera-Normal for houndstone, Tera-Dark for espathra (c) Prediction-- Coming in on the right stab move vs CB Chien-Pao, Accidentally attacking into Annihilape I don't think there are any 'mons left in the tier that fit the parameters I highlighted above. Volcarona might be an exception though.[/I] [CENTER] NJNP: After your OST championship win you stated, "Overall I think SV is a great metagame. I don't understand the controversy around tera; there is a lot of strategic depth to the mechanic." Do you think SV with the shed tail ban has progressed towards an even better metagame, what has made you feel the tera mechanic is balanced since the contentious suspect? [I]Vert: Players will only Tera on key turns and as an SV player, being able to identify these key turns are important to success in the tier. Most 'mons will also have a pool of two to three common Tera-types max which makes accounting for them in gameplay much easier. Additionally, using your tera before your opponent can put you back significantly in a match as you can no longer use "reactive Terastallization" to whatever your opponent Tera's later in the game. Overall, the mechanic adds a fresh layer of complexity to Gen9 which I enjoy a lot and not in an unhealthy way. An example is[URL='https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen9ou-687964'] OST finals, game 2[/URL]. I get 90% chip on valiant by Tera'ing my Ceruledge, and while this Tera may have been impossible for my opponent to predict, this interaction does not end the game on the spot. Far from it in fact, now I have to worry about my opponent Tera'ing: in this game, it ends up being Tera-Flying Kingambit which probably would have swept me if I didn't have the combination of taunt Great Tusk + Will-O-Wisp Ceruledge. If I didn't burn my tera on Ceruledge, I would've had a cleaner out vs Kingambit in Tera-Fairy Walking Wake. Another example is [URL='https://replay.pokemonshowdown.com/smogtours-gen9ou-687996']Game 3 from the same finals[/URL]. Tera Blast-Water Iron Moth once again sounds like some bullshit competent players can't account for as Iron Moth's most common tera types are Ground-, Fairy-, and Poison-. The reality of the situation is it only got as many kills as it did due to Shed Tail. if I had no shed tail support, the 'mon would have gotten like 2 kills max before dying to the combination of Hydreigon's Draco meteor + Cinderace's u-turn. While yes, this "surprise Tera" did get me a lot of value, my opponent stellar flares is still very much in the game as all he needs is Great Tusk + Dondozo to secure a win. And more importantly, I cannot tera anymore WHILE MY OPPONENT STILL CAN. Clearly, there is a lot of strategic depth here unlike brainless Dynamax which is a free power construct Zygarde w/ multiple contrary Draco Meteors... I won't deny there is some guesswork involved, but it's not like these interactions are game-ending sequences that remove skill from the game. The last argument anti-tera players make is how there are 50/50's involved. Personally, I think it's a myth and I rarely come across them. In high-level play, they happen around what? 10% of the time? And I'm being generous with that number. This is far less "uncompetitive" than 30% static/flame body ending games on the spot in SS. The shed tail ban helped the metagame progress quite a bit. OST finals had shed tail in all 3 games; the SPL finals tiebreaker was decided by the move as well, good riddance.[/I] [SIZE=1]The main final question reveals spoilers regarding what comes out with the release of home[/SIZE] [Hide=Spoiler] NJNP: With home coming around the corner and many players looking forward to it. What is a Pokémon you’re looking forward to using upon home release, what’s a Pokémon you feel will be underrated from the home release, and what’s the Pokémon you feel will be quick banned first from the home release? [I]Vert: The 'mon I'm most excited for is Zamazenta because I think it'll be balanced this generation. It will provide teams an alternative to Great Tusk which is a breath of fresh air. Landorus-T, Heatran, Tornadus-T, and Slowking-G will be cool to have too. The only 'mon I'm not looking forward to is Zapdos, it's very cringe underrated 'mon. I think Basculegion will be great after Last Respects is banned. It's Floatzel but eclipses it in every regard as a Swift Swim user (except speed). It has better bulk, an extreme speed immunity, more power, wider coverage, and a lot of versatility. Adaptability sets, for instance, will be very scary, while Mold Breaker Wave Crash can be used to go through Multiscale Dragonite and Water Absorb 'mons like Clodsire and Volcanion. The female form will also be solid. It's stronger than Kingdra and Shadow Ball is very spammable I think Last Respects and Spectrier are the first to go. Magearna, Landorus-I, Urshifu-Dark, and Regieleki will probably be the 2nd wave of quickbans, then we'll get a Terastallization Re-Test after that if I had to guess.[/I] [/hide] NJNP: Thank you so much for your time! Could you please leave us with a team that you feel holds up very well in this current metagame? [I]Vert: [/I][URL='https://pokepast.es/29628d15c03063eb'][I]https://pokepast.es/29628d15c03063eb[/I][/URL] [/hide] I really wanna keep doing these interviews as I want to give the community a perspective of what most would view as a good player. I feel like a lot of conversations happen and the insight isn't available to everyone, especially players just getting into competitive Pokemon. The goal is to always give an in-depth discussion on the metagame that could be enjoyed by not only beginners but also experienced players, I hope that was accomplished. This interview was a blast to do, Vert gave very very detailed insight into the metagame. If you enjoyed it, give tons of likes/hearts. Please give positive feedback so this project can keep going. [/CENTER]