Reflections on the 2017 International Challenge for February

Reflections on the 2017 International Challenge for February

I don’t usually start these posts with a look behind the curtain, but I figure this seems like an alright time to do so.

To be frank, I expected to have this post out a couple of weeks ago.  Jokes on me for expecting the battle record results to be released right after the competition, I suppose.

Next time I enter a competition, I’ll be sure to account for this and try to space out whatever I release about it.  I unfortunately won’t be entering the Alola X Kanto Regional Rumble that registration has opened up for this weekend both because I don’t have a team set up and also because being sick really doesn’t help my energy level or processing power.

Oh, and while I’m at it, I figure I should mention that this is my one-hundred-and-first blog post!

Screen Shot 2017-03-10 at 4.12.09 PM

The post I made earlier today about the story I had published was actually my hundredth, and if I had realized it was going to be I probably would’ve incorporated things to be a bit more grandiose.  Oh well, if anything this shows that I continue to live up to my blog’s name – Work in Progress.

I continue to be amazed that what started out as a literal placeholder for a blog name that I couldn’t come up with has sort of come into its own as something that makes sense for the continual development of myself as a writer and a game player.

Am I thinking too much into that?  Maybe.  Maybe I’m just lazy and still haven’t come up with a better name.  But that’s neither here nor there.

With all of that out of the way, enjoy this sort of really late recap of a battle series I did some time ago.  I’ve been throwing it together for a while.  I’ll throw it under a read more since it’s pretty big and I don’t want to push everything else down too much, so continue on if you’re interested!

The 2017 International Challenge for February has ended and the ratings have been tallied.  As I’m sure you all have been waiting to know, just how good did I do in the 45 battles I took part in?  After all, I talk a big game when it comes to Pokémon lore and team building ideas, but putting those ideas into practice hasn’t always necessarily been my strong suit.

Before we look at my score, here’s a reminder of who I brought with me.

For a more in-depth look at my team you can check out my last post about them here, though this is a much more succinct and nicely laid out version.

Big Chungus, Schnoz, Capuchin, Tharja, Peach and Nessie.  These six took me out of the comfort of simply breeding theoretical battle partners and into the realm of actually putting my money where my mouth is, duking it out against people likely just as passionate about the game as I am.

So, how did they perform under my guidance?

According to the Pokémon Global Link, here’s how it all worked out:

Screen Shot 2017-03-10 at 3.33.04 PM

For what was essentially my first ever online Battle Competition, I think having a 24/21 Win-Loss record is pretty great!  Especially considering my team didn’t necessarily fall into an overused and overseen category with Tapus, Ultra Beasts and obvious heavy hitters like Garchomp.

If anything, my team was partially built to counter these kinds of threats, as my leading combination of Electivire and Probopass really beat down a lot of common leads I saw.  After a couple of times where the Pokémon Garchomp was taken out by having its Earthquake blocked by Wide Guard followed right away by a one-hit-kill Ice Punch, I knew they really were a dream team.  In fact, I think I led with them in just about every battle I participated in.

They weren’t the only two to shine, however.  My Mandibuzz got off a successful Z-Roost at least three or four times in different battles I fought, which gave me an immense speed boost without the loss of defense that the Weak Armor ability usually leaves.  She honestly became a hell of a team sweeper with high speed knock offs and roosting during a toxic stall.

My Lapras also put in work with an immense amount of coverage for close to any situation I needed.  In particular, Garchomps and Pelippers fell victim to the occasional Freeze Dry and Arcanines quickly fainted when facing a Hydro Pump… Whenever the move didn’t miss, of course.

Passimian and Tsareena didn’t get quite as much play time as the others, unfortunately.  A lot of the time, because you’re only allowed to bring four of your six team members, the four I brought were the ones I’ve already mentioned.  While my monkey got his time to shine here and there, and while Trop Kick did give me the chance to stall out a few opponents, I didn’t get to use them nearly as much as I wanted to.  Most of the Pokémon I was good at taking out got taken out without them, and those that didn’t I probably wouldn’t have been able to take out either way.

In fact, if I had to pick any one Pokémon that caused me the most trouble, it would have to be…

Image courtesy of Bulbapedia

Tapu Koko.

Seriously, this guy screwed me over almost every time I saw him.  Even though I didn’t see him appear quite as often as I expected, he still showed up enough times to knock my Win-Loss ratio down a fair amount.

While Tapu Lele usually got taken out pretty easily by my Mandibuzz and Steel-type attacks, Tapu Fini got demolished by some combination of Thunder Punch, Drop Kick and Freeze Dry and Tapu Bulu actually only showed up once in my 45 battles, Tapu Koko really left his mark on me.  Not only did his attacks hit hard in the Electric Terrain his ability sets up, I also didn’t have much to hit him back with.  No Ground-type Pokémon or coverage attacks is one thing I would honestly change if I had to do this team up again.

My Mudsdale, Cheval, probably would’ve destroyed any and all Tapu Koko with an Earthquake.  Just saying.

I did face some other threats, but none of them were quite as bad as the Electric/Fairy-type.  Alolan Ninetails setting up Hail and Aurora Veil made it hard to break through some walls, especially since it made a Flash Cannon from Schnoz into a 2-hit-knock-out.  Kartana also swept my team a couple of times after getting an attack-based Beast Boost, but he was the only Ultra Beast I saw pretty frequently that caused problems.  Whenever I saw a Celesteela it bugged the hell out of me knowing I’d have to break through that wall, but while I was afraid of him walking in he was easy to take down whenever I still had Electivire up and running.

At this point, the Mawile and Beedrill Mega Stones have not yet been released.  So, I’m still waiting for the rewards for competing in the battle competition.

However, I was able to get this in the meantime:


Apparently, the two mega stones for Mewtwo have been made available for anyone who enters the code “M2DESCEND” in mystery gift.  Not quite as intrinsically special to me as Mawile’s mega stone… But Mega Mewtwo is pretty undeniably cool in either form he takes.  So I’ll accept this gift for now while I wait to get the rest.

Did you participate in this competition?  If so, let me know how you did in the comments below!  If not, let me know who you would have run with if you did participate, or if you’re planning on taking part in some battle competitions in the future.

In the meantime, I’m going to go continue to fight a losing battle for Eirika against Lucina in Fire Emblem Heroes.  Expect more on that in the near future.

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