Implemented WCOP Format (tiers)

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Luigi

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Hey pals, we're about 2 months out from the qualifying stage of WCOP, which is close enough for people to care, while still being far enough away to make some changes in time for teams to adjust. Last thread on this subject was decided at pretty much the same time last year. This thread aims to discuss the tiers that will be played in the tournament, other considerations like the number of participating teams or the status of continental teams can be discussed elsewhere.

we had this discussion last year and came to the conclusion that in the year following a new gen release it made sense to have WCOP be all CG OU to highlight that, especially since sentiment about SV OU was positive at the time.

We don't need to rehash the pros and cons of CG only WCOP, we all know it's easier for the non-traditional teams to field 8 SV starters, and we also all know that on the flipside it makes for a more boring tournament, ultimately which WCOP format is better comes down to which of these factors you choose to prioritize. Personally I find this format to be significantly worse, even when CG OU is good, and SV OU right now is pretty fucking bad. Granted, SV OU will probably improve between now and WCOP. I also believe that there are formats out there that are both more interesting than pure SV OU and also not too hard to field players for, hence the thread.

That said, let's talk formats. An idea that had traction last year was a mix of lower tiers with old gens. How do you define which lower tiers and old gens? With the intended goal of making it as easy as possible to fill these slots, I propose we go by popularity. If we look at the ladder stats for Slam tiers something pops out immediately:

Lower tiers:
DOU: 370244
UU: 233237
Ubers: 185483

RU: 70578
PU: 68329
NU: 66430
LC: 27369

DOU, UU and Ubers are an order of magnitude more popular than the other ones, which can also be verified by other metrics such as forum activity in their respective forums or SCL signups, and I suspect that most if not all teams would have no trouble fielding competent players for all of them. DOU has historically been separated from singles, but I'm sure all teams can find a competent DOU player from scouting OSDT.

As for old gens, again with the goal of picking tiers which are easy to field players for, if you check the ladder stats for them, ADV and SM are way more popular than everything else, but there isn't another clear outlier, with DPP only being slightly more popular than ORAS/BW/SS. You could go with those 3, but I doubt all teams can find a DPP'er, and I also doubt people would be ok with having gens 3, 4 and 7 only. Instead, I suggest we take the last 3 gens, which have large playerbases that played them when they were current, and have exposure via Smogon Tour and Masters. Surely no team has trouble finding SS, SM and ORAS.

This leaves us with:

4 SV OU
1 SV UU
1 SV Ubers
1 SV Doubles
1 SS OU
1 SM OU
1 ORAS OU

Much more variety than before and equally feasible for teams to fill out. I can confidently say that Brazil for example would have an easier time filling out a roster in this format as opposed to 8 CG OU. It also revives something we lost when SPL transitioned to be all OU, which is the intersection of old gen and lower tier players, something I've personally always liked a lot.

We can keep doing all CG OU in the WCOP's immediately following a new gen's release.
 
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Dj Breloominati♬

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Seeing the title of this thread made me sad given full cg wcop was one of the best things that happened to smaller regions (like India), but by the end of the post I found myself agreeing to a lot of it. The slam tiers you highlighted are by far the most popular, with DOU and Ubers having a lot of competent players from different regions that don't overlap with the current singles playerbase. Again, I agree with the fact that it's pretty easy to find players for fairygens, especially with masters / rotw friendly ST sparking some interest in those tiers (I'd also argue that mechanics wise, it's easier for a "cg player" to get into, so it's in line with the sentiment of being easy to get into)

Personally, I think we should do a 5th SV OU slot over UU to make sure that atleast 50% of the representation would still be cg ou. This would make this change a little less drastic, and would reward teams that have been focusing on their SV throughout the year. Axing UU has nothing to do with the tier itself; I actually enjoyed playing in circuit/playoffs in the past year. It's just that from a functionality standpoint, it's a singles tier that is kinda similar to SV OU, to the point where you'd rather just be better off having another OU slot. Opening this can of worms can be a slippery slope though, so tier discussion should be done with all factors considered, otherwise this thread may derail into every community fighting for its spot.

Overall I think this is a good idea, though the complaint I see people having would be how "arbitrary" this selection of tiers ends up being. Some smogon historians would play down the 2024 champions citing things like "it was different back in our time", "this is like the Lakers winning in the bubble" etc, but I think it's time we move past that archaic style of thinking and do what's best to (possibly) generate more interest in one of our best tournaments.
 
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Baloor

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I do like the idea of switching up the format a bit. I don't really have suggestions but 8x of the same tier can be incredibly draining even on a active team and overall can just get boring to watch, which is a shame because the WCOP format is probably one of the most fun to watch formats. I think the 8x SV served its purpose last year of being the "SV is new so lets help it develop" tour.

My main "hope" is that we can see some old gens return to the tournament in some capacity, the masters tiers are a good starting point imo. I feel the current playerbase that would be playing in this WCOP would have at the least familiarity with these more recent older generations and it shouldn't be too overly hard to field players for these. We just had masters conclude so I feel there is a bunch of "new life" being pumped into these three as well (yes even SS).

i think the proposed format is ultimately good and more enjoyable then our current one.

tldr basically; at the least consider bringing back SS/SM/ORAS for this as these are probably the most "accessible" old generation tiers for teams to field players as well as just general familiarity with them still being relatively recent with less of a knowledge gap (fairy gens).
 
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Please please please just anything but all OU for another 2 years please I would cut off a toe if it meant even 8 CG RU. SS OU is permanently ruined as a tier because of how oversaturated it got from having 300 games played a year for 3 years in a row. Don't let it happen to SV OU too, regardless of how you personally view the tier quality.
(editing on: speaking for us west we strongly condone the format luigi proposed)
 
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Star

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I’ve been pretty public with my personal opinion that I find full CG OU extremely mind numbing as a player/spectator and definitely preferred the old format. Obviously there are valid concerns about having all the old gens wrt accessibility for a lot of regions and most teams won’t want that. The last time we actually got to vote, my team did vote for the low tiers/old gens combo and I still think it’s the best format.

I think having the biggest low tiers and most recent old gens is probably the best way to keep the tour quite accessible while adding some variety so definitely happy to see where this thread goes.

Tiers in the OP are prob optimal imo because it’s always going to be much harder to find “established” players for the really old gens in smaller regions even if the overall player base is sizeable. More than 10 slots seems bad too, I think the majority of teams would struggle to fill out 12.
 

ima

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5 SV OU / 1 DOU / UU or Uber Slot / Masters Tiers

to echo the great Breloominati's post i really like the idea of 5 CGOU slots mostly due to tier representation and believe it would make the most sense to have IMO.

i'm a big fan of a Doubles slot and that's why i wanted to post personally - i can't remember when the last time Doubles made an appearance in wcop (literally can't because idt my account was around at the time) but like, why not? i can see how much traction Doubles has received since the start of Gen 9 and idt it stops anytime soon. the games during SCL were really fun to watch. lastly i think it deserves a shot because i feel its popular enough to have it be introduced in this format and have enough players to play it. if that was an issue before i dont think it would be today.

that being said i think the tiers in OP's post are well reasoned and would likely bring more traction to the tournament. 5 SV OU slots just made more sense to me bc i feel at the end of the day current gen ou is what we want to represent the most and there are admittedly more settled-in CG players from other regions than old gens. but if we want to have best of both worlds i think re-introducing the master tiers now would be the best way to go about it.
 

Lily

wouldn't that be fine, dear
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I don't have much to add other than I'd like to see a focus on lower tiers if tiers are changing given they have the lowest overall representation in officials (Slam, SCL) while oldgens have a bit more (Classic, Masters, SPL, STour) and CG OU obviously has a ton already as it should. Don't particularly mind which tiers get in and don't, but personally I'd rather see an oldgen or all oldgens cut if it means axing a lower.

With that said if there's a desire to add some oldgens back I do like Luigi's format. I don't think removing UU would be a good thing given its popularity and 4 SV OU feels like enough since between WCoP, SPL and SCL, that'd mean we have 10 CG OU team tour slots per year (multiplied by whatever number of teams there are) which is not only a satisfying round number but also still gives us a number of OU games in the thousands - to me an extra lower tier slot is of much higher value than an extra OU slot and would give some regions that little boost they need while fostering talent from more directions. And in case this seems like bias, I'd most likely be playing OU regardless, so this is really just a practicality thing for me.
 

Genesis7

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Team Canada would be in support of something like this. The tournament needs to change from CG OU as we are perpetually at the tier’s whims. Frankly, with the way Nintendo and TPCI operate their DLC rollouts, these gens will likely emulate the volatility of SV as the gens roll on. Players simply do not want to play these gens in a lot of cases in high stakes matches.

I would like to point out that including DOU/Ubers/UU (maybe less so with UU and Ubers) does feel like those starters would be on a bit of an island from the rest of the team. Not the case for everyone, but I feel like this may constrain the team culture and well roundedness of the tournament as it pertains to the difficulty of selecting the right substitutes to round out this team + support the starters, while the OU tiers objectively call for more attention.

I suppose SPL teams of yesteryear looked quite similar, but I did have the same complaint with them. Especially with DOU.

I would like to rather see a reintroduction of old gens, but maybe a return to a WCoP 2014 style, as past tours have proven that teams can struggle mightily to select GSC players in particular… in the past RBY too, but do not see that as much of a problem now. I believe that the initial popularity of DPP and BW competitively lends itself to the fact that teams will never struggle to fill these slots. ADV has simply blossomed as a juggernaut of competitive Pokémon organically.

Either way I personally support a change period.
 

Jirachee

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IMO it would be a shame to exclude ADV from this new format. Of all the old gens, ADV has the most ladder traffic, and the best developmental system for new players. Between tournaments like Mushi League and Revival, new players gain exposure to ADV veterans and learn quickly. Many great players have been developed from these circuits.

I think the easiest way to go about this would be to swap ORAS with ADV in the suggested format. The fact is that ADV is WAY more popular (more than 3x the ladder traffic!) and ORAS simply lacks the developmental tools ADV has. It should be easier for teams to find a competent ADV player.

I think the suggested format is perfect otherwise. Full CG does get dull.
 

RoiDadadou

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Biggest problem I'd see with a lower tier inclusion outside of Ubers and DOU, is accounting for suspects decisions, quickbans, etc.

With all due respect to the leaders of the respective lower tiers, who often do a great job (UU/RU/NU/etc), we had a lot of examples this past year of anomalies that stayed in the tiers too long, either because we didn't want to change things too much during a major tournament, or perhaps sometimes simply through a lack of communication with the player base.

While I think they for sure need more spotlight and development, I don't think that WCoP is quite the place to do so. Then again I consider it's the biggest tour stakes-wise, so that may be a bit biased.

I otherwise agree with some arguments about full CG being quite dull, especially after what we've seen SS become after that. Even tho I believe that having full SV last year allowed to be way more prep focused than sparce and different formats, having more diversity seems like a plan to at least try again in the coming edition.

Would support:
- 5 SV OU or 4 SV OU + 1 SV DOU.
- 1 SS OU.
- 1 SM OU.
- 1 ORAS or 1 ADV OU if ORAS is not considered popular enough.
 
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DugZa

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Hello, not one to usually post in these threads but this is something I'm keen about so figured I'd make a post. While I agree with most of the things stated on the OP, I just wanted to make a case for a usage based lower tier (RU/NU) to be considered over DOU (and Ubers to a lesser extent).

Luigi suggested that the lower tiers be picked based on popularity and used ladder stats to support DOU and Ubers being added as 2/3 lower tiers; however, I think it's important to decide based on popularity on forums rather than popularity on PS. As such, I compiled the signup numbers for circuit tours and team tours (main PL and secondary team tour that's not a WC, for applicable tiers) for the tiers in question (UU, RU, NU, Ubers, DOU). Referring to whatever the most recent edition is for the team tours; 2024 for UUPL/DPL and 2023 for the rest.



Based on the above numbers, it is pretty clear that Doubles is by far the least popular tier of the lot and if we were to go by forum popularity, it wouldn't make a lot of sense to add DOU. Not to mention, DOU also has its own trophy tour dedicated to it. Yes, the other lower tiers also have individual trophy tour representation but 6 tiers being crammed into one tour while DOU has its own trophy tour is vastly different and incomparable so shoehorning DOU into yet another trophy tour feels very unnecessary. Also as alluded to by Genesis above, DOU starters are more likely to be siloed from the rest of the team which doesn't help its case either and from personal experience, this has been evident even in SCL where the DOU starter and support have always been limited to their channel alone. On a minor note, DOU also had the most number of 'Tiers Not Played' entries in SCL with a total of 267 compared to RU and NU having 154 and 175 respectively, which again suggests that it is less liked than the rest.

As for Ubers, while the numbers do support it being added, given it was only re-added into official tours recently after being removed from officials, it would be awkward for Ubers to have more trophy tour representation than both RU and NU, both of which have had long and more consistent histories of being in officials, both individuals and team.

All in all ideally I think UU/RU/NU should be the three lower tiers that are included in the tour in addition to the OU tiers as opposed to what's proposed on the OP but if the demand for Ubers is high enough then at least RU should be included instead of DOU to have UU/RU/Ubers.
 

Javi

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So do we add OU to Ubers world cup, UU world cup, ..., too? Or we don't do that because you are actually not interested in those tiers and just look for a way to have a better chance?
Adding back old gens or masters formats (to a minor extent than CG) is something that is actually worth discussing
 
Mathematical WCoP Proof

1) The tournament circuit does not currently distribute old gens and lower tiers evenly - things like SS and SM are relatively favored.

2) It is okay / good to have uneven representation if it makes specific tournaments better (see: masters or previously two stours).

3) We should look at what makes WCoP as good as possible in a vacuum.

4) Many people agree that 8x cg ou is disinteresting and not this tour’s best form.

5) Kumbaya Cup, gb’s proposal (UU RU NU over doubers), is more of a representation thing than a making WCoP better thing.

6a) 5 cg ou x 5 oldgens (ss-dpp) keeps things fresh without asking everyone to find 1990s gamers.

6b) 10 > 8.
 
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njnp

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I believe we should have less CG OU considering the state of the tier. We have seen SPL 4 CG present some not fantastic game play and last WCOP it had some very low moments, I remember recording a ton of qualifier matchups and the same 6 being used due to the number of teams you need to put together for each opponent. I feel lower tiers should get more representation so I'm all for DOU, UU, & Ubers being included. I think the growing popularity of tiers such as ADV should also be considered. With all that being said the ideal format I'd like to see is:


2 SV OU
1 SV UU
1 SV Ubers
1 SV Doubles
1 SS OU
1 SM OU
1 ORAS OU
1 ADV OU
1 BW/DPP OU

I feel this discussion also should be had in the future ideally right after World Cup or at a sooner date so in the future teams can be more prepared. I also feel a format should be set for a 3-4 year period of time so it allows countries the time to develop players that will be able to play these tiers at a high level, rather than it changes/rotates not allowing the up and coming countries proper time to gain footing.
 

Perry

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I'd like to propose 3/5 CG OU + 1 CG Ubers + 1 CG DOU + 3/5 OG, with the OG slots always being the newest old gens and the CG slots being pending on whether you want 8 or 10 slots.

This proposal avoids the problem with having two different formats for WCoP (release v non-release years) as Ubers and DOU are available day one, with another plus being avoiding users waging war on what lower tiers should be included, which is something I hope we as community have moved on. It's also rather flexible, with the potential to accommodate more fairy-gens over the years by changing the CG slots to fit one more OG slot, if needed.

But really, no matter the format chosen, I really wish TDs / community pick a format and stick to it for some time as it makes managers and players' lives easier by allowing them to plan ahead without worrying about format changes every year.
 
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On a minor note, DOU also had the most number of 'Tiers Not Played' entries in SCL with a total of 267 compared to RU and NU having 154 and 175 respectively, which again suggests that it is less liked than the rest.
I don't think it's less liked at all. My experience back then in snake and spl was that my teammates thought watching the doubles games was always very exciting and they loved to talk about it. I just think the average singles focused player doesn't have the confidence to flex into doubles. Which from the position of having perhaps never played doubles competitively is an understandable thought for them to have. However, I genuinely think any top player from any format could very rapidly pick it up and perform well, it ultimately tests the same skill sets, "mons is mons" as is often said. It almost feels like a myth that doubles is so uniquely distant from the singles tiers, I'd love for that myth to be eroded and I think tours like these that bring the format into a fuller view of non-dou regulars are great opportunities for doing that
 

ryo yamada2001

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Hello, not one to usually post in these threads but this is something I'm keen about so figured I'd make a post. While I agree with most of the things stated on the OP, I just wanted to make a case for a usage based lower tier (RU/NU) to be considered over DOU (and Ubers to a lesser extent).

Luigi suggested that the lower tiers be picked based on popularity and used ladder stats to support DOU and Ubers being added as 2/3 lower tiers; however, I think it's important to decide based on popularity on forums rather than popularity on PS. As such, I compiled the signup numbers for circuit tours and team tours (main PL and secondary team tour that's not a WC, for applicable tiers) for the tiers in question (UU, RU, NU, Ubers, DOU). Referring to whatever the most recent edition is for the team tours; 2024 for UUPL/DPL and 2023 for the rest.



Based on the above numbers, it is pretty clear that Doubles is by far the least popular tier of the lot and if we were to go by forum popularity, it wouldn't make a lot of sense to add DOU. Not to mention, DOU also has its own trophy tour dedicated to it. Yes, the other lower tiers also have individual trophy tour representation but 6 tiers being crammed into one tour while DOU has its own trophy tour is vastly different and incomparable so shoehorning DOU into yet another trophy tour feels very unnecessary. Also as alluded to by Genesis above, DOU starters are more likely to be siloed from the rest of the team which doesn't help its case either and from personal experience, this has been evident even in SCL where the DOU starter and support have always been limited to their channel alone. On a minor note, DOU also had the most number of 'Tiers Not Played' entries in SCL with a total of 267 compared to RU and NU having 154 and 175 respectively, which again suggests that it is less liked than the rest.

As for Ubers, while the numbers do support it being added, given it was only re-added into official tours recently after being removed from officials, it would be awkward for Ubers to have more trophy tour representation than both RU and NU, both of which have had long and more consistent histories of being in officials, both individuals and team.

All in all ideally I think UU/RU/NU should be the three lower tiers that are included in the tour in addition to the OU tiers as opposed to what's proposed on the OP but if the demand for Ubers is high enough then at least RU should be included instead of DOU to have UU/RU/Ubers.
though i agree that using tour signups is more accurate than ladder activity, this misses some significant context. DOU 2023 fall seasonal came directly after OSDT, our most prestigious and also intense tournament for its swiss format, where all high tier players flock towards. i know several players who sat out fall seasonals to avoid burnout (because its another very long tour) and/or because they had invitationals places locked in. OSDT IV has 335 signups, which looks a lot better for the purpose of gauging activity. sure, its numbers are inflated because its a trophy tour, but my argument is that the seasonal numbers are deflated as a result of OSDT

but even so it's a flawed pick of stats, if you look at DWCOP there were 245 signups (i don't understand why you used derby numbers for this at all? that's knowingly and deliberately a pretty niche tournament) and we've expanded every year because doubles is a highly multi-cultural tier with lots of great players from different regions. DOU is large enough that every team would be able to find a viable player, and also the skills are transferable enough that good singles players could slot in there too
 

DugZa

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though i agree that using tour signups is more accurate than ladder activity, this misses some significant context. DOU 2023 fall seasonal came directly after OSDT, our most prestigious and also intense tournament for its swiss format, where all high tier players flock towards. i know several players who sat out fall seasonals to avoid burnout (because its another very long tour) and/or because they had invitationals places locked in. OSDT IV has 335 signups, which looks a lot better for the purpose of gauging activity. sure, its numbers are inflated because its a trophy tour, but my argument is that the seasonal numbers are deflated as a result of OSDT

but even so it's a flawed pick of stats, if you look at DWCOP there were 245 signups (i don't understand why you used derby numbers for this at all? that's knowingly and deliberately a pretty niche tournament) and we've expanded every year because doubles is a highly multi-cultural tier with lots of great players from different regions. DOU is large enough that every team would be able to find a viable player, and also the skills are transferable enough that good singles players could slot in there too
Thanks for bringing up ODST, since some people were calling me "disingenuous" on discord for not mentioning ODST numbers; I just forgot to post the numbers for that on the original post. Anyways, ODST got 335 signups; RU Open and NU Open got 375 and 364 signups, respectively. Mind you, RU Open and NU Open don't even award trophies for winning them, they are just contributing tours for a larger trophy tour (Grand Slam) while ODST is directly a trophy tour and still got less signups so my point stands, RU and NU are far more popular than DOU on forums.
 

ryo yamada2001

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Thanks for bringing up ODST, since some people were calling me "disingenuous" on discord for not mentioning ODST numbers; I just forgot to post the numbers for that on the original post. Anyways, ODST got 335 signups; RU Open and NU Open got 375 and 364 signups, respectively. Mind you, RU Open and NU Open don't even award trophies for winning them, they are just contributing tours for a larger trophy tour (Grand Slam) while ODST is directly a trophy tour and still got less signups so my point stands, RU and NU are far more popular than DOU on forums.
RU & NU Open are also part of a trophy tournament. people sign up for them to have a chance to win a trophy?

my point isn't in splitting hairs between what tiers are more or less popular, and more so in clarifying and contextualizing that the difference between tiers is not so significant as to completely dismiss Doubles' hypothetical inclusion into this tournament. the arguments i've seen so far lack context or more intricate understanding of Doubles' tournament scene, so I wanted to shed some light on that before people start getting convinced by no-context 2023 fall seasonal and doubles derby numbers
 

teal6

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I don't dislike the idea of changing up WCOP's format. It doesn't feel knee-jerk at all to me, either, because we've had a few iterations with this format. It seems pretty consistent that people aren't Particularly Thrilled with All CG OU. I'm not sold on what the replacements should be but several of you may good points in this thread and GB's OP "feels" right to me in a sense.
 

Sabella

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Speaking personally here I have never really liked the All CG OU wcop format just because simply I have found it boring, repetitive and monotonous. Many people re using the same teams quite often and so on, these points have all pretty much been hit in this thread. On top of that the tier is pretty chaotic and even as tiering changes emerge I cant say I envision it being a balanced meta in 2 months. I quite like the idea of mixing it up this year with the most popular CG lower tiers + masters gens. It appeals to a larger base just from a pure spectating point of view and its probably still the most accessible outside of pure CG OU.
 

Finchinator

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Some thoughts:
  • Cutting CG OU slots is fine since there’s an overwhelming amount of support to do so. Even if I like the old format, you cannot deny the thread wants more of a compromise. That should be possible!
  • Going from 8 to 10 slots to meet demands isn’t a bad idea and WCOP has even supported 10 slots previously, making this very much on the table. 12 slots feels a bit out of reach for some regions though.
  • Going from 8 to less than 4 SV OU should be a non-starter — teams worked to build their cores on CG OU and a bigger departure than this feels unfair. 4-5 CG OU feels appropriate and sustainable. I personally prefer 5, but 4 may be the more friendly number to making some formats work
  • I’m personally fine with OU OU OU OU SS SM ORAS Ubers being very likely with DOU UU and another OU (I personally prefer UU being in) being on the table. Open to hearing what people prefer and even discussion of further lower tiers or old generations, but there are some logistical worries for all of those that leave me thinking that may be a challenge.
 

elodin

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gonna make a quick post just to say that i wholeheartedly support the change and that i really like luigi's proposed format, especially because of this:

Much more variety than before and equally feasible for teams to fill out. I can confidently say that Brazil for example would have an easier time filling out a roster in this format as opposed to 8 CG OU. It also revives something we lost when SPL transitioned to be all OU, which is the intersection of old gen and lower tier players, something I've personally always liked a lot.

i personally think finding an intersection of old gen and lower tier players in team tournaments is extremely important, otherwise the communities become a lot more segregated and we have recurring issues pop up, such as "why are managers who don't know lower tiers chosen in scl??", or "oh my god new players can't learn old gens!! they're so much difficult!!" and dumb shit like this, as if it's not possible to be proficient at both groups of tiers. in my eyes, this has been the iron cage of smogon tournaments as of late. realistically, having a team tournament with an equal amount of lower tiers and old gens makes it so these different groups of competitive players come together, enabling a much more integrated tournament and promoting interactions between both parties. i think the positives far outweigh the negatives in this format, especially thinking about the future after world cup.

however, moving forward, i do think a discussion should be held on whether or not wcop is the ideal tournament for this purpose, because one major flaw it has compared to other team tournaments is that teams are most likely gonna be very similar regardless of what tiers are played. therefore, i can also see it not working at all at intersecting these groups, but i do think it's worth the shot for this edition anyway.
 
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eragon

(un)retired unmon enthusiast
is a Tiering Contributor
The Case for DOU in World Cup of Pokemon
I'll preface this by saying that myself and most of the people I've talked to about this topic are skeptical that DOU would be picked for this tour based on the history of similar discussions. The point of this post isn't to clown on any other tier but rather to show why including DOU in this tour would be beneficial for both the Doubles Community and Smogon as a whole. Much of the historical stuff regarding doubles inclusion precedes my time on smogon but I feel qualified to speak on this based on a) conversations with people who've played longer than me and b) just poking around on old forums. Thanks for reading!

Benefits to the DOU Community
Doubles OU is currently doing decently well in terms of representation on smogon, with inclusion in SCL and our own trophy tour OSDT being highlights of the year for many/most DOU players. These events help bring the community together and just visibly bring more activity to forums(the Doubles community tends to be primarily active in the Doubles discord rather than on forums, please don't just use forum metrics to measure the state of tiers). I say all this just to say that we as a community greatly appreciate any representation in official tours for the positive impact they bring-- often even encouraging new players to create smogon accounts and participate in said tours.

With that being said, the removal of DOU from SPL remains a point of regret for many people. This post, although more than 3 years old, still pretty well encapsulates the impact of that decision on the community. I'm not here to debate SPL-- that ship has sailed-- but losing representation in such an important tournament on smogon was definitely unfortunate. Receiving an individual trophy tour as compensation has definitely helped alleviate the pain here (please don't ever start another thread on eliminating OSDT :skull:), but team tours are really a fundamentally different pokemon experience from individuals and going from involvement in 2 team tours-->1 team tour is a loss no matter how you slice it. Frankly, DOU's representation in official tours, while decent and certainly appreciated as is, has suffered from being present in only 1 out of the 3 big teamtours (in contrast to the growth the community has seen in recent years).

In regards to World Cup of Pokemon specifically, DOU fits quite well, with strong players being pretty evenly distributed from all over the world. I have no doubt that involvement in this tour would galvanize the community to a similar, if not greater, extent as SCL does each year, with players and spectators paying close attention to the tour and discussion surrounding it (almost assuredly accompanied by community casting and discussion threads/videos). In addition, the region-based nature of this tour and the large number of teams would also encourage VGC players from participating countries to engage more with the DOU tier, something I'll get more into later. Overall, inclusion in WCOP this year would be a great boon for the Doubles community in several ways and would help restore DOU to the official teamtour representation that has been lacking since the removal of DOU from SCL, reuniting the Doubles community with a larger segment of the broader smogon community.

Benefits to Smogon and WCOP as a Whole
Including DOU in World Cup of Pokemon would have broad benefits for the larger competitive Pokemon community on this website. As someone who pretty much only sticks to playing DOU on here, I can't really comment on the arguments of 8x SV OU being "boring" other than to point to the other posts in this thread arguing just that. However, what I will comment on is the nature of the interactions between various communities/playerbases across the site. Speaking personally, I've been fortunate to interact with many different people as a result of various tournaments (including SCL) and it's definitely my favorite part of playing this game (and judging from some of the other posts here I'd say many people feel at least somewhat similarly). Currently, the big three team tournaments on Smogon help bridge the gap by pairing current gen OU and oldgens players in SPL and pairing current gen OU and lower tier players in SCL. While this is great for these two tours, WCOP doesn't currently function in the same way, and as such oldgens and lower tier players (particularly in the case of DOU, where opportunities for interaction with other communities are inherently less as a result of the perceived nature of the format) have little chances to be paired together for a major team tour.

Of course, much of the above has already been stated previously as the rationale behind considering lower tier formats in the first place, so where does DOU fit in? Well, primarily due to the differences in the format and the structure of the tournament scene as a whole, DOU is particularly isolated from other segments of the community. As an official metagame, it is in the site's best interest to facilitate the integration of the DOU community with the rest of the overall smogon community. This tournament is a great chance to continue bridging that gap.

To speak more specifically about the benefits of including DOU, we must also look at how the DOU community's involvement in this tour would bring in a demographic of players that otherwise would have less reason to pay attention to WCOP, a factor that contributes to a little bit of the isolation from the rest of the site currently. Although there are exceptions, most "DOU mains" do not really play singles formats and have less reason to pay attention to WCOP than other lower tier players, who most likely are more familiar with singles formats (this is also why comparing OSDT numbers to RU/NU open numbers is disingenuous) and thus are probably going to get more out of watching a primarily OU based tour. As such, including DOU in said tour involves a community in the tour that otherwise would have little reason to engage, increasing the reach of the tournament in ways I would argue no other slot would realistically be able to do. However, similarly, I believe adding Ubers and UU would also contribute significantly to expanding the reach of the tournament. It is for this reason I support the initial proposal above-- I believe it maximizes WCOP's reach while affording opportunities for several communities to collaborate further on smogon.

My final point in advocating for DOU here has to do with what I said earlier regarding this tournament likely encouraging elite VGC players to interact further with DOU/Smogon. Historically, SPL/Snake/SCL have all brought in high level vgc players to play on smogon in the DOU slot, and given the large number of WCOP regions that play in this tour, I think WCOP could further expand on this phenomenon to an extent even exceeding those other tours. In reading similar threads to this one spanning back several years, I've often come across arguments about the "prestige" of the tournament in question, often used to advocate for excluding lower tiers (something that I disagree with beyond just DOU). However, in DOU's case, I would argue having these VGC players play in smogon tournaments actually increases the "prestige" factor of the tournament by leading to really high quality matches between some of the best Pokemon players in the world. At the end of the day, isn't that what these tournaments are all about? Thanks again for reading.
 
https://www.smogon.com/stats/2024-01/ Source

SV Tiers
Gen 9 Doubles OU: 370244
Gen 9 UU: 233237
Gen 9 Ubers: 185483

Old Gen OUs
Gen 3 OU: 186211
Gen 7 OU: 127484
Gen 4 OU: 72210
Gen 6 OU: 54049
Gen 5 OU: 49605
Gen 8 OU: 44658
Gen 1 OU: 34014
Gen 2 OU: 9162

Options
8 SV OU - (Option 1 - 8 Slots)
5 SV OU / Ubers / UU / Doubles OU - (Option 2 - 8 Slots)
4 SV OU / Ubers / UU / Doubles OU / SS OU / SM OU / ORAS OU - (Option 3 - 10 Slots)
4 SV OU / Ubers / UU / Doubles OU / SS OU / SM OU / ADV OU - (Option 4 - 10 Slots)

I think these are the 4 viable options we can have for a WCOP format.
12 Slots is far too much for a team to field.

Option 1 We keep the format the same, nothing changes.

Option 2 Would keep the number of the slots at 8. Unlike last year's format, it would have 3 new tiers that have the biggest playerbase outside of Random Battles and SV OU. This Option adds tier diversity and would remain easy for every team to field a competitive team.

Option 3 is my least favourite option due to ORAS having a low playerbase count compared to the SV Slam Tiers and ADV OU.
At least with SS OU, it is the most recent Old Gen that gets played for Smogon Tour and Masters that gives people more opportunity to play the tier.

Option 4 for me is more preferable thanks to ADV OU having the biggest playerbase for an old gen, It would be much easier to find an ADV player than a ORAS player. Especially if the teams slots do go up to 10 rather than 8.
 
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