OU SPL XV BW Discussion (and now some tiering discussion)

I have practically no stake in this, but the appeal to tiering policy in this case makes no sense.
- sand rush should not be banned, Exca should be, and the only reason this is not the state of the meta is because it is grandfathered in
- we should be able to ban sand force, because given the tier as is, it has no real negative impact on tiering policy - it is simply the natural extension of current tiering in this situation

I see no reason a policy supporting a grandfathering system makes sense, at least if we operate under the assumption that un-equivocal application of policy is the best/only way to tier, or that it is the only way tiering will occur at this time.

essentially, my questions are these: what, from a policy perspective, is different about having sand rush banned, or sand rush and sand force banned?
what would the harm in banning sand force be, when extraordinary measures have already been taken for the same objective, and the objective is, (if im reading public opinion on this tread right) something that is still desirable

Steam Buns

is a Pre-Contributor
I believe that removing spikes (and scald too but that seems unlikely) might be the most beneficial thing for the tier at this point. I don't think there's a single metagame issue brought up in this thread that isn't greatly exasperated by the presence of spikes and given the lack of consensus on what to address, I struggle to see the issues people have with bw ever truly being resolved without tackling something more overarching like spikes. However I can see why that might be too drastic or unconventional of an approach. In that case a cloyster retest first seems like the most sensible thing to me, after that I think that reuni, thundy and exca should all be suspected as well.

wrt dropping ubers down, reshiram is probably fine lugia and deo I'm not too sure about, but it really doesn't make sense to start adding mons to the tier right now, at least until we know nothing else is changing.
There are about 1000 ideas here and also arguments of if we ban XXX pokemon => YYY pokemon becomes OP

  • ban Spikes
  • ban Thundurus T (mon is OP but banning => rain bad)
  • ban Excadrill (complex ban vs outright ban. mon OP but we need a spinner)
  • ban Latios (corner stone of the meta game)
  • ban Reuniclus (banning drill => Reuniclus OP)
  • ban Cloyster / Volcarona (degen gameplay)

  • unban Lugia
  • unban Reshiram
  • unban Zekrom

Can we actually do something instead of jerking around and arguing for literally years and nothing get done?
A Logical Proof

1) Banning Sand Rush is philosophically equivalent to Banning Sand Force (only broken on 1 mon, can easily argue they are inherently broken due to perma weather)

2) Unbanning Sand Rush would require an Excadrill Ban

3) An Excadrill Ban would make Spikes broken

4) Banning Spikes would deface and ruin BW

5) We must keep Sand Rush banned

6) We are allowed to ban Sand Force (but we don't have to)
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After reading through this thread, feels like a bunch of the ideas like unbanning Lugia, or banning Thund/Latios/Cloy is just fluff on the side that people divert into while the elephant in the room is Sand Force Excadrill and the related inconsistency in what is apparently acceptable under tiering policy. Until that's sorted there's not much way of moving forward. If you're going to say that complex bans do not fit within policy and legacy reasons are void, then that should be handled consistently regarding all weather abilities. There's basically 2 roads (unless you want to just keep things as is):

1. Accept that older metagames require more complex banning due to different mechanics and to preserve their legacy, in which case you just ban Sand Force and go from there.

2. Apply consistent Tiering Policy and undo all complex bans (Sand Rush, Chlorophyll and Swift Swim all of it) and then ban the most egregious abusers like Excadrill, Venu, Kingdra etc. This would bring back potentially other interesting offensive users like Stoutland to at least hand some tools back to the various weather offenses.

From there you can then look into other things, like banning Cloy and bringing back gems, Latios ban or the problematic nature of sand spikes.

This idea of "we can't do anything that doesn't conform to current tiering policy" while maintaining older exceptions is so wack and bringing the chance of any positive change to older generations to a grinding halt (I hate how SpeedPass in ADV was handled with similar arguments). Personally I think exceptions should be possible, considering these metagames developed in different times, but at least be consistent in it.

Anyway, that's just 2 cents from a nobody.
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So I will say straight up, I am a noob at BW OU. Despite having interest in the tier for a few years now and it being my second played gen, I do not have the skills to win in this game at a high level. But I'd still like to get my thoughts out there.

Thudurus-Therian and Cloyster Ban :bw/thundurus therian: :bw/cloyster:
I'm going to lump these two together because to me they are similar in what they do broadly and how I think they should be dealt with. In my eyes, they are both gimmicky ass mons that do not contribute much to the tier and cause headaches in the teambuilder. Thundy-t at least helps rain out, but I don't think that's enough to keep it in the tier because yes, I do think they should both be banned. Rain was dominant for so long and it taking a back seat in the meta isn't really a bad thing in my eyes and can allow for more creative teams to rise. So, Thundy-t helping a playstyle that used to be dominant by forcing so much RNG with thunder paras and such, isn't really that good. Cloyster is just chesse, straight up.

Latios Ban :bw/latios:
This is one that I am a bit iffy on. Latios is a core component of the metagame, and removing it would definetely impact the tier. Keldeo would straight up need to be banned in my eyes. I don't think shaking up a old gen tier that much is a good thing. However, I do believe that Latias would fill some of the void it left. Of course, latias is MUCH less powerful than Latios, and as such latios' revenge killing capabilities would not be able to be replicated. However, latias has much better defenses and as such would be better in the defensive department. It would not replicate Latios 1-1 and most likely some things would need to be banned. But I think seeing how latias could replicate latios' qualities could be good for seeing how much an impact removing latios is. Latios in itself is an offensive beast and difficult to deal with, so there is merit to seeing it out.

Sand Force Excadrill Ban :bw/excadrill:
I do not think that excadrill should be banned. It is the most splashable spinner in the tier by far as while donphan and tentacruel are great. they fit really only on sun and rain respectively. Excadrill can fit on any playstyle and that in itself is. I will say that I don't think that a spikes ban would be a good idea, but excadrill is a good thing for stealth rock removal, and if we remove both then there would not be a lot of progress making. However, I can concede that sand force excadrill is somewhat of a problem. I think in this scenario, the bending of the rules should be done a bit. Ban sand force, I know that this has been dismissed but in the past these sorts of decisions have occured and I think that in a metagame as old as BW, these are alright. If this was current gen, I would oppose this but there is a status quo to uphold. Excadrill is a key component of the tier, and as such it should not be banned, only sand force if that's allowed.

Lugia Unban :bw/lugia:
Despite my vehement opposment to unbanning Lugia in SV, this isn't the worst idea in the world. Lugia has a lot of issues, mainly its stealth rocks weakness and sand weakness, while also being weak to both of tyranitars stab moves. However, I do not believe that we should introduce something that could potentially be broken in a tier where there are already potential brokens running around. Wait until their are more bans, then discuss this.

Deoxys Defense Unban :bw/deoxys defense:
This straight up is a dumb idea. I won't have much to say about this but Deo-D will not be using defensive sets, it will revert to the hyper offensive spikes lead set and it will terrorize the tier once again. Do we not remember how it warped the tier so much before? Don't do this, it will only lead to pain.

Unban Gems + Ban Volcarona :grass gem: :bw/volcarona:
I do not like this idea. Even if we hypothetically ban cloyster as well, it is not a good idea. Gems straight up are broken and reintroducing them would be a major step back in tier development in my eyes. They are better z-moves, which were already contentious, however you can use multiple of them per game with no drawback. Volc I think is only an alright mon, and although I do wish it were banned, doing it on the basis on unbanning gems is not a worthy compromise. Do not do this, this will not bode well for the tier.

Ban spikes

Spikes I am against banning (side note, this topic I am the least knowledgable about in BW, so take this with a grain of salt). As a whole, I think spikes are a fundemental part of pokemon and banning them would not be a good idea. While it does reduce defensive mons ability to wall things and it increases the usage of psyspam teams, I don't truly think there ban would solve as much as people are claiming. While the above statements are true, I don't think that spikes are fully evil. They also of course limit offensive play, but that's a cheap arguement to keep them because everybody and their grandma knows that, but I also think that psyspam teams with reun, zam and latios would not lower in viability that much. Yes, they would decrease in viability, but two of the three ignoring stealth rocks and sand chip is amazing in this tier. Ultimately, this topic is the one I am least familiar with, but I don't think spikes should be banned.

I am a noob in BW OU, so take all my opinions with a grain on salt. But if you want a tldr list:
Yes: Thundy-T and Cloyster Ban
Maybe: Latios Ban, Excadrill Ban
No: Lugia Unban, Deoxys-Defense Unban, Gem Unban+Volcarona Ban, Spikes Ban
On a serious note, Sand Force ban is an absolutely terrible idea; both from a tiering perspective and is NOT really a broken element -- well, exactly, not more broken and worse than many other mons that roam free... The only good thing, it'd free my beloved dog, but I'd support a Cloy ban any day unfortunately...

The fallacious logic behind a Sand Force ban can be easily exposed by questioning ¿Why don't we propose a Magic Guard ban instead? One could present it like this:

Excadrill usage other than its sheer power and resists is because Spikes are so oppressive, probably at the worst state of all gens, this is due to the Magic Guard abusers. BW is a special case: this is the gen were most MG users were introduced (and last for the record), almost all fully-evolved mons are on the verge of high echelons of viability -- the Clefable discovery and outbreak of the last 2 years, when it was previously regarded as unviable, even Sigilyph sees usage from time to time despite having the worst profile. Also they all stack together and have absolutely disgusting synergy as we all know; pair alongside Spikes, they can outlast or clean-up teams pretty easily, having neutral match-ups on worse scenarios bar full counterteams... Latios is also its best friend, another borked element. Magic Guard is OUTRIGHT BROKEN AND STUPID.
For the record I don't support a Magic Guard ban, nor any other proposal listed here. I don't think there is a single ban that solves this puzzle; multiple or batches of bans (or unbans combinations) could maybe lead us to a more stable picture... We are the best moment to start an example on how to re-tier old gens: there's more tournaments than ever -- BWPL, Circuit Seasonals, Invitationals, Cup, etc., we should use any of this as testing grounds and see if any of the multiple bans/unbans achieve a more balanced enviroment. This is the most efficient and pragmatic way of not risking our current state, while trying out to decipher the formula that solves BW.

Last but not least,

#BanLatios #FreeSoulDew
Why don't we propose a Magic Guard ban instead?
Because that would change the meta by a lot. The point of a Sand Force ban is it's a decent nerf to a Pokemon you can still use, and would still be good, and bring all of the utility it prior had; just now it is not flinching down Skarmory with Iron Head.

A Magic Guard ban would basically change the entire tier as several key Pokemon are basically dead in the water, and now the meta has to restructure. Sand Force would have almost no casualties besides making a Pokemon that people want in the tier less of an issue.

It's an easy dunk of a tiering move that would be good QoL for the tier, without having to basically start over. Regardless of my opinion of wanting radical change, if no one can agree on radical change should be implemented, the next best thing are easy moves to make the tier more enjoyable, even if it is not a major shake-up to the meta. That is not the same thing as banning an ability that is the cornerstone of many Pokemon and playstyles/interactions in the tier.
Because that would change the meta by a lot. The point of a Sand Force ban is it's a decent nerf to a Pokemon you can still use, and would still be good, and bring all of the utility it prior had; just now it is not flinching down Skarmory with Iron Head.

A Magic Guard ban would basically change the entire tier as several key Pokemon are basically dead in the water, and now the meta has to restructure. Sand Force would have almost no casualties besides making a Pokemon that people want in the tier less of an issue.
And how's "Sand Force ban has no casualties outside of Exca" even relevent to push it over the edge for a ban? That's ridiculous logic: if we need to start breaking down elements of pokemons to have a more enjoyable metagame, we're doing it wrong. Not to mention objectively Magic Guard > Sand Force in terms of raw oppressiveness, and there's barely any support for a Sand Force ban or perception it's broken compared to other things mentioned.

Finch had a good post explaining how that would open a can of worms we'd rather have closed, even if we are on the worng side of the tracks with the precedent of Sand Rush + Excadrill.


Tyrants GSC Legend
is a Tiering Contributoris a defending SPL Championis a Past SCL Champion
World Defender
I'm an average bw player but still having experience and having played a few tournament.

It is very clear that Cloyster is a poison because it only brings cheese and moments of really avoidable rng so I don't understand how in 2024 we keep cloyster on this tier.

We know how punishing crit in oldgens is, so imagine with Skill Link how stupid it can be.
Plus it doesn't nerf HO at all to see cloyster go, An argument therefore not as valid as saying it's not broken because you have specific technology like sitrus berry Ferro/Jelli. I find this ridiculous and it really takes away the possibility of building lots of different teams that are just 6-0 by Cloy.

Please act against this then we'll already have a more playable tier.

Sand Force Excadrill is also a problem and I don't understand why it shouldn't be treated like Sand Rush.

Banning Sand Force because it gives a complex ban is an invalid argument too. Either unban everything or ban everything should be apply imo.

I'm sure that with these changes, BW will be much more appreciated by the playerbase, as we have the chance to see some great players established over the years.

Thanks for reading!
The metagame is ass. There is not a good balance between offensive and defensive threats (never has been as this tier is sort of an special case, tbh) and the solutions proposed in the last few years (all these meme votes and stuff) in order to try to make it better have been uneffective and/or insufficient.

I support the idea of bringing down deoxys-defence into OU, I don't think it'll be that difficult to deal with.

Lugia is a bit complicated, although it is rubbish in Ubers, Multiscale is already an annoying ability to deal with on Dragonite, I don't want to imagine this on Lugia in OU.

I still think that cloyster limits us a lot when it comes to teambuilding because of how hard it is to check.

I think we could heavily benefit from revisiting some uber pokemon that aren't viable and try to bring them to OU, it is the only way to make OU fun again.

I have more things to say but I don't know if my message will be understood.
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