A New Challenger Approaches! (Day 1 Worlds Report)

Greetings Hat Lovers,

Well… I remember when I used to play Pokemon casually; that was only last year actually. Oh, sorry, let me introduce myself first. My name is Meaghan Rattle otherwise known as Rykou in the VGC world. I am an Australian based player who contended for day one of worlds in their first year of playing.

Why is an Australian on VGC With Hats? Well, this is a story I would enjoy sharing. The checking process happened as it always did; sit in the seat that the page told you to. This was always done by order of first name and seeing how Max and I share the same first letter, we were seated next to each other in terms of table number. I also got the luck to be seated next to Matthew Roe who was a fellow Australian talking to Max who was seated opposite him and was a prime opportunity for me to be able to introduce myself with him. We talked to each other throughout the event and that’s how I ended up here.

Regardless, you’ve come here for my world report and that’s what I’m here to deliver to you, my wonderful readers.

The morning of day of destiny I slugged myself out of my crummy hostel bed with only two hours of sleep and proceeded my way down the street with my Groudon, Blastoise and 3ds and never looked back. I had locked my team in the previous day and couldn’t undo what I did and thought “everyone is going to know my team and be prepared for it but, then it occurred to me “I’m not going to win any battles today; these are people who have been playing for years and I am a scrub compared to them.” After the opening ceremony concluded, I had to brace myself and make my way down to flight A for my opening match.

Now before I go into the team, I’ll tell you why I used it. I had chosen this team because I only had mere seconds to prepare for worlds between my study time and my schooling time thus I just stuck to what I had used before, only with slight variations.

The Team:

600px-382Kyogre-Primal

Kyogre @ Blue Orb
Ability: Drizzle
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 228 Def / 28 SpA
Quiet Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Scald
– Origin Pulse
– Ice Beam
– Protect

Kyogre’s purpose was to spread water offence and to punish Groudon users. The quiet nature with 31 speed IV’s was included so that it could outspeed Mega Salamence in tailwind underspeed primals that have 31 speed IV’s but no investment in trick room.

115Kangaskhan

Kangaskhan @ Kangaskhanite
Ability: Inner Focus
Level: 50
EVs: 20 HP / 140 Atk / 76 Def / 20 SpD / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
– Fake Out
– Power-Up Punch
– Return
– Sucker Punch

A standard Kangaskhan with a bit of bulk. This bulk was intentionally for low kick but overall seemed to work effectively as Kang was still dishing out high offensive power and having the ability to live even more hits than intended with the meta shifting towards making Pokemon more bulky rather than offensive. Kang was also great fake out pressure when I needed it.

437Bronzong
Bronzong @ Lum Berry
Ability: Levitate
Level: 50
EVs: 252 HP / 148 Def / 108 SpD
Sassy Nature
IVs: 0 Spe
– Skill Swap
– Safeguard
– Gyro Ball
– Trick Room

Standard Kyogre assisting Bronzong. Safeguard was chosen as the fourth move because I needed multiple ways to be prepared for smeargle.

Thundurus
Thundurus @ Focus Sash
Ability: Prankster
Level: 50
EVs: 4 HP / 252 SpA / 252 Spe
Timid Nature
IVs: 0 Atk
– Taunt
– Protect
– Thunderbolt
– Thunder Wave

Literally the most basic you can get. It did exactly what you’d think it does: thunder wave.

600px-383Groudon-Primal

Groudon @ Red Orb
Ability: Drought
Level: 50
EVs: 12 HP / 244 Atk / 252 Spe
Jolly Nature
– Precipice Blades
– Substitute
– Protect
– Fire Punch

Stolen from Grant Weldon’s team report. Decided to go with Jolly because could deal with Xerneas and other slower Grounds better. Also Sub Groudon was something fun to use that I hadn’t used previously.

Salamence-Mega

Salamence @ Salamencite
Ability: Intimidate
Level: 50
EVs: 4 HP / 164 Atk / 4 Def / 84 SpA / 252 Spe
Naive Nature
– Tailwind
– Protect
– Hyper Voice
– Double-Edge

A Salamence that had more of an Edge than a Voice. I needed tailwind on this set because tailwind can gain so much momentum in a game especially when they lost their own speed from of speed control.

The 6 Pokemon that had been put together for a while and that everyone was ready for.. or were they?

Round 1 VS Manuel Rios (Peru):

His Team: 384383237080663303

Game 1:

He Brought:384237383663

I Brought:382115437383

I remember I lost because he had the momentum from turn one. I was too paranoid of a Groudon switch in and I didn’t take advantage of my Kyogre’s water STAB. It didn’t help either when I returned + ice beamed into the Ray only to have the Ray target my Kyogre and crit it to death turn 2. This was something I couldn’t come back from without help from Kyogre.

Game 2:

He Brought:384237383663

I Brought:373382383437

He lead the same in game two and I thought I could capitalise of this prediction as I brought Mence to intimidate both Hitmontop and Ray. Unfortunately, his Ray had Draco and I traded my mence for a three turn momentum gain which slowly faded away to my Kyogre being crippled in the sun. It was soon Bronzong vs Talonflame and Groudon and I knew that this match was over.

LL

At this point, I thought my tournament run was over as did many other Australian’s at home. No one expected me to do well and I really believed that I couldn’t achieve what I wanted to either. These next rounds would prove me wrong.

Round 2 VS Sergio S (Argentina):

His Team: 235384383115663245

Game 1:

He Brought:384245663383

I Brought: 115383382437

I didn’t know what to expect but special groudon and air lock scald into my own. I didn’t prepare too hard for the Suicune Ray lead and got punished for leading Groudon into it. My only way out in this game was to set up trick room and try to position myself for the Kyogre sweep but, with his Suicune packing the dreadful roar, I could do nothing and in the end, it was a 4/0 clean sweep for him.

Game 2:

He Brought:115245383384

I Brought:115642383382

I lead hard into what I thought would be possibly the same thing as game one. I saw that he lead Kang and I wanted to play risky; I wanted to go all in on the 50/50. At that point I thought that there’d be nothing more to lose for doing that so turn one I went for the mega evolve fake out into his Kang; risking the speed tie and the inner focus ability. I turned away from the screen and took a deep breath as I saw the mega animations unfold. I saw the text “Kangaskhan” and I knew it was gold. I had won the speed tie and had successfully got the fake out onto his Kang. I thunderbolted the suicune as it went for a scald into my kang. Receiving no burn and using thunder wave to my advantage, I was able to clean up his team after dodging the fake out from his Kang.

Game 3:

He Brought:384245663383

I Brought:115642383382

This was the lead that I wanted to see game two. This was my opportunity to play safe. I went for the fake out into Ray which didn’t protect and crippled Suicune with a thunder wave to which it got fully para’d. The next turn started with my Thundurus doing Thundurus things and I went for the T-Wave onto the Ray to which it got fully para’d and the Suicune followed with immobility soon afterwards. These three full Para’s caused him to loose too much momentum to which my kang was able to pick the team off until I needed to replace it with one of my two restricteds that I had in the back.

LWW

I had one win at this point and was happy that I came this far to at least win once. Sergio was also a really cool guy to which I would report back to him how I went during the tournament due to a conversation about how Thundurus is garbage and it should stop doing Thundurus things.

Round 3 VS Allan Velez (Mexico):

His Team: 716383003373461642

Game 1:

He Brought:003461383373

I Brought: 115383382437

This game consisted of me going for the PUP play turn one into Weavile and protect with Groudon. I remember maintaining momentum until poor Bronzong got crit and the end game that I had wanted was altered with his Venusaur being able to KO Bronzong and Kyogre with grass knot to win the game.

Game 2:

He Brought:003461383373

I Brought: 115383382437

Same game, different outcome. I stayed in Inner Focus as his Weavile faked out my Kang and I got the successful fake out onto his Venusaur and was able to substitute with Groudon. He switched out Weavile for Mence and I was able to power up punch that slot and get a clean KO onto the Venusaur with Groudon’s fire punch after the fake out damage. It eventually game down to Groudon V Zong and Kyogre in the rain and the Groudon’s fires were put out.

Game 3:

He Brought:461642383003

I Brought: 115383382437

This time he knew about Inner Focus so I faked out the Tundurus and he tried to fake out my Groudon. I let Kang take whatever thundy was going to do to it as the weavile switched out into Venusaur but it turned out the Thundurus was going to attack and my Groudon outsped and cleaned it up with a fire punch. Kang eventually was eliminated and my Groudon for his. In the end, it came down to my full health Bronzong with safeguard up and his Venusaur which was unable to sleep powder anymore as I had set it up one turn after trick room had gone up. Venusaur was KO’d by Gyro ball.

LWW

Three down, five to go.

Round 4 VS Andy Himes (United States of America):

His Team: 132115716383488235

Game 1:

He Brought:115488383716

I Brought: 115383382437

Turn one he went for helping hand into his Kang to which I went for fake out into his Kang and obtained a free substitute with my Groudon. It then got to the point when it was Groudon and Xerneas in the rain against Kyogre and Bronzong in trick room. He couldn’t get a double protect so he lost his Xerneas and as he was crossing his fingers for origin pulse to miss, I used the safe scald to ensure my victory in that game.

Game 2:

He Brought:115235383716

I Brought: 115383382437

I thought long and hard about what I was to do turn one; I couldn’t let either Kang or Smeargle get the better of me. I decided to attack smeargle with Kang and attack his Kang with my Groudon. He went for helping hand with his smeargle and I returned it for the KO. His Kang then launched a powerful double-edge into my Groudon to which it lived on 7 HP and was able to take the Kang out with fire punch due the amount of recoil Kang took. He sent out Groudon and Xerneas and the game was a lost cause for him at this point as I had Kyogre and Bronzong in the back.

WW

At this point I realised my record was 3-1 in my favour. I thought to myself “if I win the next three rounds, I’ve made day 2 of the world championships and the hard way too. I had a profound sense of determination at this point and I wanted to do the best that I could do.

Round 5 VS Akira P (Italy):

His Team: 115235716437373383

Game 1:

He brought:373235383437

I brought:373383437382

Big B. A match-up that everyone back in Australia was overly preparing for. Smeargle was down first on his side while Mence was the first one down on mine. I remember losing a hyper voice speed tie and living on 1 hp and if I didn’t I would have lost the whole game because I didn’t target the Smeargle that tun with my Groudon. I only had Bronzong and Kyogre left while he had Bronzong, Groudon and Salamence left. He set up trick room and I set up safeguard and I only had one play at that point: skill swap. He switched mence out into Groudon and I skill swapped and punished his switch out. He was forced to bring Mence back in but ultimately, he couldn’t get the double protect he was looking for.

Game 2:

He brought:115716383437

I brought:115383437382

Being ahead one game I decided to mess with his head. I wanted for him to develop the thought process that I’d play really risky after I let his Geomancy go up turn one. Making all of the ‘hard reads’ I managed to take it to 2/0 but this game was lost when I saw ‘Geomancy’ on the screen.

Game 3:

He brought:115716383437

I brought:115383437382

Alright, this was where my mind game came into play. I had executed a really risky play-style in the last round so this turn one, I’d play ultra safe. I went for fake out into the Xerneas and a P-Blades. I found I had won a speed tie after he faked out my Kang after my success in flinching the opposing Xerneas. The next turn I won the Kang speed tie again and KO’d his Kang with my own and KO’d his Xerneas with my Groudon’s fire punch. He switched in Bronzong and Groudon to which I switched out my Kang into Bronzong and P–Blades assuming the Bronzong was heatproof. My blades connected with the Bronzong and it was only his Groudon left against all four of my Pokemon.

WLW

4-1. I had two more matches to win to make it to day two. I checked my facebook messages from those back in Australia who were supporting us from afar. I had looked in one of my various chat groups and read the line “Meaghan is up against Chua next round.” My phone slid out of my hands as my body completely froze in shock. I didn’t want to believe it and to my horror, I had received a pair up to Chua who was 5/0.

Round 6 VS Paul Chua (United States of America):

His Team: 383235663384245598

Game 1:

He Brought:384245383598

I Brought:115642383382

After my set with Sergio prior to this, I had learned that Kang and Thundurus is a decent lead matchup against this team archetype; especially when they don’t have fake out pressure themselves. I managed to get board positioning by constantly switching out the Kang slot to get the upper hand over what he was switching out. I can’t remember exactly how it got to this, but it ended up being Suicune V Kyogre and Thundurus to take game one or at least, something like that.

Game 2:

He Brought:598245383384

I Brought:115642383382

He decided to counter my Kang lead with Ferrothorn but I quickly made the safe switch into Groudon and caught his Ray on a switch in to KO it with T-bolt and another move the next turn from Kang when I switched Groudon back out into Kang. This game had it’s ups and downs but none more so than the turn Chua blames on RNG. I made a prediction for his Ferrothorn to protect to which it did so I went for P-blades and Thunderbolt with my Groudon and Thundurus into the Suicune slot. My Groudon went first as Thundy had been slowed due to a previously used icy wind. My blades that came from the earth missed the Suicune and I was so disappointed at that turn; he had been bailed out due to the move missing. But, my Thundurus loves me for some weird reason and crit the Suicune for the KO. It then came down to  Groudon speed tie as I needed to KO his Ferrothorn to win. I won the speed tie and could then safely bring in Kyogre.

WW

This was it. I was 5-1 and I had defeated an undefeated at that point. This was my chance; this was my opportunity to make day two. I only had to win one of the next two games. With the support of my fellow Australians (especially Phil aka Boomguy at that point because most of the others were playing) I had faith in myself that I could win one more set.

Round 7 VS Victor Manuel Gonzal (Costa Rica):

His team:115642383382488373

Game 1:

He Brought:373642383382

I Brought:115382383642

His offensive presence in the first game punished me; he was able to dodge my fake out and allow the set up of his Groudon to make my Kyogre useless. I lost this game turn one and I didn’t even try to make my way out of it.

Game 2:

He Brought:373642383382

I Brought:373382383642

I made a safe switch into Groudon for my Kyogre turn one and set up tailwind as his Mence protected. He then switched into Kyogre and HP watered my Groudon after I had hit it incoming for 75% of it’s health. After that and the fact he had taunt over thunder wave on his Thundy, I was able to clean up the rest of his team with the offensive presence of Kyogre and Salamence.

Game 3:

He Brought:373642383382

I Brought:373382383642

This was the game of the day. After seeing HP water on his Thundy, I thought it was safe to assume he had draco meteor on his Mence as opposed to tailwind. I made a prediction for his Thundy to Groudon and for him to go for draco into my Mence. But my predcition was a lot more than just that; I predicted draco to MISS my Mence and I selected my moves according to what would have happened if it MISSED my Salamence. I then thought I was an idiot on planning on a whole turn based around that one event occurring, but to my surprise, I was 100% correct in my prediction. That turn played out exactly the way I wanted it to; switch out, miss and free tailwind + ice beam KO into the opposing Mence. After he lost Mence for nothing, his play slopped and he allowed me to easily hound offence into the rest of his team until he allowed me to have Groudon and Thundurus V an almost dead Kyogre in the sun.

LWW

6-1, I had made it to day 2 of the world championships!

What about day two?

Dual primal Zong was not the right choice to bring to the tournament and I gave up after my first two rounds were full of disgusting RNG on both ends of the spectrum.

So, that’s my story. I guess now that I have pushed my way through the depths I guess anything is possible.

I’d like to give some shout outs here:

VGC With Hats crew- Thanks (mainly Max) for allowing me to write this article for you guys. Sorry it’s so late, I had school to catch up on when I came back.

The Ludicolo Patrol- They accepted me into their meme filled group and supported me throughout the whole season. Also, Adelaide was great and we should always remember that Charmeleon always wins even when there is a Mioltic and Ninetales on the field.

Jackson Bankovic- He may not be the most well known VGC player, heck I don’t think anyone really knows him, but, he was willing to train with me using some peculiar things which really aided me in day 1. Thanks buddy!

Nathan Cappelluti- The banana memer who trained with me on occasion to prepare me for the wrath of moody. You allowed me to have Smeargle brought against me twice all day.

The Australians who supported me during the tournament: Nick Bingham, James Kasaros, Robert Whitehill, Cameron Diamon, Christopher Kan, Phil Nguyen, James Farrugia, Matthew Roe, Alex Poole, Galvin Hui, Jesse Wilsone, Jay Tyrell and Sam Pandelis

The true Australian, Sam Schweitzer

And everyone else who supported me but I’ve forgotten because worlds was two months ago and I have had so much go on since then.

Thanks for making my day 2 dream come true!

Also, thanks to you for reading this. That’s the most important part to this.

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