Monday, August 28, 2017

VGC Tournament Tips


Attending your first VGC event is a great thing as you get the chance to play Pokemon on a competitive level with fans of the game, all competing to achieve the Ash Ketchum dream and be the best of the bunch, but before you attend your first event, there's some important things you need to know to make your first event a great one and to set yourself up to attend more events and make friends, joining a community of fans of the game. Let's dive in and hopefully by the end of this article, you'll know everything you should know to make your first event a smashing success.

Bring all required resources and everything you may need

The first step is to bring everything you'll need. Depending on the event, some tournaments will require an entry fee so if it does, make sure you'll be able to pay it off or you won't be able to even compete. Even larger events may require a spectator fee so if your planning on just going to enjoy the event, you might have to pay to get in. Next, should you decide to compete, make sure you bring a tournament legal team. Each season, the VGC ruleset will change between December and January so be sure to familiarize yourself with the rules so you can go to the event with a legal team so should your team be checked by the tournament organizer or judges, your team passes because if it doesn't, the Pokemon that failed the check might not be allowed to used for the rest of the tournament or you might even be disqualified. Next, make sure to update your DS and game cartridge. Every once in a while, an update will be released and it is your responsibility to update it before the tournament because if it isn't it becomes a hassle for both you and the tournament organizer (TO) as you will either have to update it on event day or won't be able to compete. Finally, while its not required, it is always helpful to bring your charger and conserve the battery life of your DS as if your system runs out of power, it sadly will result in a game loss. If you do notice your battery is running low, its best to either charge it in-between rounds or to turn your system off in-between rounds to conserve battery and make sure that if it ever runs dangerously close to "dying" its when your tournament run is over so you aren't penalized for it.

Know how all VGC tournament battles will work

When playing VGC, all battles will follow a set format of double battles. The way it works is that both players will enter team preview where you'll get to see all 6 of your opponent's Pokemon and they'll get to see all 6 of yours. From there's you'll both have 90 seconds to decide which 4 of your 6 have the best chance of defeating your opponent's predicted 4 Pokemon. While deciding which 4 to bring and since its a double battle, you get to choose 2 Pokemon to start off with, using the other 2 Pokemon in back to potentially form defensive switches and maneuvering yourself into an overall better position to win the game. Also, its important to keep in mind that in order to win rounds and advance in the tournament to get closer to winning the event, each round is a best 2 out of 3, meaning that in order to defeat your opponent, you'll need to win 2 games.

Respect your T.O. and everyone in the venue

The beauty of attending VGC events is that at the local level, your able to build friendships so when you attend larger events, you have a group of friends you can hang out with who can support you and you can support them. This works because of the respect built by everyone and by showing respect, it allows people to want to help you. This goes same with your TO as the job of a TO is a very important one. Their job is to help everyone solve issue and to keep the tournament running as smooth as possible, making sure any hiccups are resolved quickly as not to inconvenience everyone else. By showing them respect, which can honestly boil down to something as simple as being nice and thanking them for the work that they do can go a long way and help establish a great relationship between both of you. By not showing them respect, it might make your TO less likely to help you out, which is not something that you'll want.

Make sure everything on your Pokemon is correct


While this was always known as an important thing, the 2016-2017 season shown why this is an important thing to always know about. As noted in my previous article detailing the European International linked here, we saw the problem in not properly filling out your team sheet as many players lost Pokemon and items that were pivotal to there teams, which shows that its important to do this. You should also focus on making sure your Pokemon and the way you are planning on using them should be correct as well as legal, meaning they pass a hack check which says that the Pokemon is 100% safe for future competitions. You can check this out at home by going on the online ladder. If the Pokemon in question is able to be used in a battle, then the Pokemon is safe, which is very important as you will not want to lose a Pokemon to a simple mistake.

Know what rules of what you cannot do.


At all Pokemon video game tournaments, there are a set group of Pokemon that are not legal in most formats expect for a set group. The Pokemon pictured here in the picture shows Pokemon that unless its stated beforehand, will not be legal in VGC sanctioned event. There are also certain items that you cannot use, mainly the item Soul Dew which are exclusive to both Latios and Latias. There also certain clauses to abide by. Species Clause states that Pokemon who share the same Pokedex number cannot appear on the same team, meaning that different forms of different Pokemon cannot be used, which is why Rotom-Wash and Rotom-Heat cannot be used in tandem. Item Clause says that you cannot use multiple copies of the same item cannot be used on the same team which is why you cannot use 2 Life Orbs on the same team for example. 

Check out all the great available resources

While not required, it is heavily suggested. The beauty is that every year, more and more ways to improve your game have popped up, from written content like on this website and TrainerTower to videos on websites like YouTube and streams on Twitch, meaning you can find a lot of information to improve your game and find great enjoyment. The link provided here can take you directly to a great list of links to VGC players who have branched out into doing there own content and links that are recommended to familiarize yourself with by bookmarking them on your device so that if new content pops up on the YouTube channels or the streams on Twitch, you'll be notified to view the content and see how these players approach the game.

Know how the season is going to work

The VGC season gets updated slightly every season, changing the amount of Championship Points earned at events, setting dates for the major events in Regionals, Internationals, and the World Championships, and the format in which battles will take place for the next year. Unlike previous years, we have been gifted this information very early, weeks before this information has come out in previous years. I will link the important information here as if you want to effectively plan out the major events you plan to attend, you'll want to look at this information and familiarize yourself with it so you can both play and plan smart. They promise to update this information as new information is available and they plan to keep us notified if any major changes are made.

Find events that are near you

On Pokemon's official website, your gifted with the Event Locator, which allows you to put in your information based on where you are in order to find events within a 250 miles (402km) radius on all events close to you. How it works is simple which I will try to explain to the best of my ability in a pastebin linked here which explains how to fill it out properly to make the most out of this feature. 


If you can do all of this, then you'll be well on your way to having a successful VGC season and I wish you the best of luck in trying to accomplish this task. Check out all the links provided and keep checking back to the Nimbasa City Post each week for VGC content. Bye!

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