Double

Cheer Skill Discussion!

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As mentioned in my video "The Business of Cheer Skills" this is a thread for us to discuss what we think of them.

 

  • Which Cheer do you use?
  • What do you think of the uses of different Cheers?
  • How do they affect your play and do you choose them based on your character?

 

Adding on to what I've already said in my video, I personally feel that there is no right or wrong cheer as each cheer complements a different play style and promotes new ways to approach matchups. Standard Cheer allows you to keep your opponent on their toes as they won't know which support you'll use from round to round. It also makes them think about the Synergy gain you'll receive, should you lose round 1. Support is similar except for the Synergy gain. Special Cheer is meant for the full aggro player, one who likes to get burst as much as possible and use it the moment they do. Still don't have too much to add about Pressure Cheer since it's one that I have limited experience with. Whimsical itself is more for characters that don't require much help gaining support or synergy, or for players that want to take a gamble with cheer effects from round to round. It's still something that needs to be played around, and is a cheer skill that keeps both the user and the opponent on their toes about how to approach the upcoming round.

 

Feel free to discuss how you use your Cheer of choice to it's maximum effect and how you view other Cheers in the current meta! 

 

Remember, this should be a civil discussion. Please refrain from talking down to others, name calling, and unnecessary comments that have no relevancy to the discussion.

 

I'll post the video here for those that haven't seen it: 

 

Edited by Double

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I just wanted to add some notes on one of the most underutilized cheer skills in the game: Pressure Focused.

 

While I personally do not like using that cheer, it has some merits to it that often go unstated.

 

Pressure allows a player to use all of their resources on round 2 (assuming they aren't playing Mewtwo) without needing to be too conservative. Because you have a back up of being able to start a round with 30% extra meter and both supports, it's easy to feel like you'll start the final game with a big advantage if you happen to lose round 2. Furthermore, if you lost round 1, it lets you really swing at it during round 2. One thing that many players hate, is using their burst to win round 2 just to tie things up and start with no meter on the final round unless they were using special or whimsical (Synergy too, but for most characters, +10% is not very much at all). Pressure cheer, amusingly enough, relieves pressure from the user. You can use this cheer to give yourself the mental freedom to feel like you can do whatever you need to do round 2 in order to close out a game, because should round 3 come, you'll be good to go from the start.

 

Japanese Sceptile player, Momo, used Pressure Cheer during Final Boss, and that he generally uses it anyway. He often would do whatever he could to get his opponent to dump their meter on round 2 whenever he was up a round. Because he had Pressure, he could active burst and force his opponent into a situation where they could not save their burst for round 3, because they were at risk to lose the game entirely. It essentially allowed him to play the long game, and fight his burst exhausted opponent with 30% + whatever he managed to carry over, as well as having Jirachi ready to go whenever. 

 

Obviously against someone using Special Cheer, getting them to burn their burst doesn't mean as much if they win and get 30% back as well, but just being able to have a sense of security in the back of your mind about your own resources makes it so Pressure Cheer worth considering if you desire that level of comfort. It is probably the cheer you are forced to put the least amount of thought into round-to-round, letting you focus on other things revolving around the match.

Edited by 五月雨のペンタオ

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11 hours ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

Pressure allows a player to use all of their resources on round 2 (assuming they aren't playing Mewtwo) without needing to be too conservative. Because you have a back up of being able to start a round with 30% extra meter and both supports, it's easy to feel like you'll start the final game with a big advantage if you happen to lose round 2. Furthermore, if you lost round 1, it lets you really swing at it during round 2. One thing that many players hate, is using their burst to win round 2 just to tie things up and start with no meter on the final round unless they were using special or whimsical (Synergy too, but for most characters, +10% is not very much at all). Pressure cheer, amusingly enough, relieves pressure from the user. You can use this cheer to give yourself the mental freedom to feel like you can do whatever you need to do round 2 in order to close out a game, because should round 3 come, you'll be good to go from the start.

 

That's something I actually never considered. From my experiences, I've usually had burst available or at least nearly ready to go by round 3 if it ever came to that. Even when I used Support Cheer I would usually find myself around 20-30% Synergy unless I *just* used it to close out the round before. The thought that Pressure Cheer is the kind of Cheer to relieve mental pressure in round 3 situations is something that's quite understated. Thank you for your input, Pentao.

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Really appreciate Pentao brining Momo’s use of Pressure cheer at Final Boss into the conversation as a case study that illustrates the fact that there’s still room for innovation in the meta regarding cheer skill.

 

To speak to Double’s initial questions I run Special cheer 95% of the time with Suicune. It’s a boon to have resources to work with in any situation and the perfect synergy benefit greatly helps when playing a 200cc character. 

 

I hadn’t thought of running Special cheer so much as a ‘hyper aggressive’ strategy but as a way to maximize assured potential resources over the course of the match. 

 

I used to greatly enjoy running Standard Resh/Cres but since both of those supports were nerfed (in benefit/limited use) that’s no longer a viable strategy in my eyes. 

 

Excited to see what others use and why! 

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Something I think you overlooked with your video is the "strategic use" of cheer skills and how they interact with each other.
With "strategic" I mean how reliably your cheer skill can set up favorable situations for you and timeout strategies are a big part of this. Since winning by timeout locks you out from your cheer skill bonuses for the next round.
I'll use an example with the cheer skill that has imo to best strategic use: Pressure Focused


Pentao already beat me to explaining how good Pressure is. Let me just quickly rephrase it and tell my personal story.
Pressure Focused is by far my favorite cheer and I began using it after seeing Elm use it at Dreamhack Sweden and I know players like Azazel and Momo use it as well.
Momo himself also recommended me to use it several times.
Pressure itself is a cheer that becomes viable with Pokemon starting at 200cc burst gauge or in other words: "Can't burst reliably every round unless you really outplay your opponent."
Since you might barely not be able to reach burst round 1, I believe special to be a poor pick since it can "overfill" your meter and synergy is the most important ressource to gain from cheer skills, so you dont wanna waste it.

Pressure however lets you set up a strategy the most reliably. Its more pressure for the opponent than it is for you and I will explain why.
Since Round 1 usually  starts on neutral ressources, winning this one is most important for both players because it forces their opponent to win the next one.
This might sound simple but with the right strategy you can capitalize on this A LOT.


The basic premise of how I use pressure, is to win either round 1 or 2, depending on when I get burst and then win round 3 with the obtained ressources.
However if you observe your opponents cheer skill and thats what I mean with "interaction of cheers" you might be able to set up a strategy to counter their cheer skill.

I'll illustrate with an example:
My opponent is a Gengar running a cheer that I dont know yet. I am Sceptile and I'm terrible at fighting Mega Gengar so I usually lose the rounds where they get burst and I can't burst back.

- I win Round 1, they get support from cheer.
Since Gengar Burst is the only threat or "lose condition" to be, I assume they are running special, which lets me come up with the following strategy:
Play Round 2 as slowly as possible. At this Point Gengar should sit on 40-70% meter. Since bursting early in the round is a bad decision, you want to force them into an unfavorable burst decision (since they still need to win the round). That means you want them to burst without access to rage or much recoverable HP.
Playing slow in this scenario also sets up for another plan: "If you can't win outright. Force them to win by Timeout."
Since I already indentified their cheer skill as Special Cheer, playing the clock and forcing them to win by timeout while still making them use their burst sets up for the best possible round 3 situation, with all the stuff I get from Pressure and them getting nothing at all. A situation that you should always win.


Another example:
- I lose Round 1, they get 40% synergy.
Losing Round 1 to Gengar is usually an indicator that you are doing something terribly wrong. (Except when they got burst by Whimsical BS)
Thats a bad situation, but still winnable. At this point the should sit on >80% of their meter. And you probably should too. The game will come down to a burst clash and you will need to play well to succeed, however you're not out yet. Winning the round with non timeout will net you your Pressure Bonuses and even if you win by timeout, Gengar will start with only their support round 3. Another good opportunity for you to win at this point.

As you can see from this: The optimal route for me to fight Gengar is Win R1, Whatever R2, Win R3. Pressure allows me to just give everything I got in R2 as long as I force them to waste their ressources. That also goes for every opponent but is most effective at 200cc+ characters.


Some words on the other cheers:

Synergy Focused: I used to think this one sucks because of the poor pacing. 10% Synergy on a win is bad since if you get it, that usually means you need to win again and these ressources dont set up for this well. However I think that Synergy Focused should be renamed into Timeout Focused since that is the Cheer Skills that synergizes the best with this cheer skill.
Using the rule that you dont get cheer skills on a win and forcing every match to be a timeout, you still snag yourself the 10% Synergy in round 1 and the whopping 40% synergy on a loss.
Since you never ever should die with full meter, this also rarely overfills your meter. I use this in timeout heavy MUs and it always did me greeeeat favors.

Support Focused: This Cheer is nice and easy to use. Its a no-brainer for low-cc characters since they can OS their Victini/Jirachi with it. But other chars that need their Support for neutral or getting in also can make great use of this. I don't use it but I can clearly see its points.

 

Special: This seems to be everyones favorite cheer next to Support Focused. I don't like to run it tho since imo it creates very momentum heavy matches.
I often feel in a Special Cheer mirror, the person who wins Round 1 is almost disadvantaged in the long run, since they basically need to win R2 or in the worst case force a timeout loss.
If they fail to do so, the momentum shifts heavily to he opposing side due to how the cheer works.

Whimsical: Oh boy, you've been waiting for this, haven't you?
I hate Whimsical solely because of the fact that it can give you powerful Round 1 bonuses which can both overturn strategies as well shift the momentum heavily in ones favor, just based on pure chance. If Whimsical would be inactive round 1 but would never fail, I'd be super totally fine with it, but I digress.

Since Kemo already leaked out a debate that I held with close friends first before going into the public with it, let me fill you in on my stance. I am the origin of the #BanWhimsical debate.
I didn't want this opinion to go public yet and especially not as poorly portrayed and with no arguments whatsoever, but thanks to Kemo we got specifically this case and my timeline is full of memes and shitposts, so allow me to present my thought process in this post:

I think cheer skills are a deep strategic decsion and I hope I demonstrated that too, having Whimsical as cheer not only puts your strategy on a dice, it also forces your opponent to adapt their strategy to the boosts you are getting. Constantly. Round 1 lucky bonuses are the worst, since timeout strats to lock out Whimsical won't even work there, so if you get really unlucky, the opponent might get the whimsical jackpot in round 1 and 3. This is my worst case scenario for tournament sets too, where sets are mostly BO3.

Whimsical in itself is not broken or in any case overpowered, however I find it to be uncompetitive, and thus should be banned from tournamets due to the following reasons:

According the Magic the Gathering creator Richard Garfield, adding luck to an "Orthogame" (which is basically a game that has winners and losers), reduces the impact of skill by distributing the chances of winning to their specific mechanics, in this case Whimiscal. I don't believe that people are losing games just to whimsical boosts alone, and the mere thought is ridiculous. But it might set up situations that wouldn't be possible otherwise... based on a chance.
In a tournament environment, where you are supposed to find out who's the best. Keeping a random element that has the possibility to make a huge impact doesn't seem logical to me.

Competitive games are usually in favor of banning luck based factors. Thats how the Smash Community turned their game from a party game, to a competitive platform fighter.
By getting rid of items and random stage effect, they were able to attain a stable competitive game, that rewards skill over luck.

Whimsical isn't centralizing, but it can make a huge impact when combined with characters like M2 and Gengar.
Since I don't see any points how a healthy tournament environment could benefit from keeping Whimsical, I consider it best to be just removed from the formula.


For everyone who's pulling the slippery slope argument of arguing that "Croagunk is also RNG, should they be banned??", listen to this:
Banning a character is largely different from banning a mechanic and even then the important thing is the options you are left with in the worst case or in other words: Counterplay.
All of Gunks "lucky setups" return all chip damage dealt all recoverable HP to you as opposed to just 1/2. So even if you are caught in the most unlucky setup, as long as you dont mash, you wont get hit and you are also able to get your recoverable HP back by proper play. Furthermore, almost all the Gunks RNG moves are heavily punishable, which gives aware players an opening.
However Whimsical does not have any counterplay to it, apart from either picking Whimiscal yourself to hope to get as lucky as your opponent, or timeout losing to prevent the skill from working, but even then you are completely at the cheer skills mercy for round 1 and (if you manage to lose this one) the theorethical round 3.
Thanks for listening to me. I'll be willing to discuss this properly.


Additional sources:
Richard Garfield's lecture on luck in games: 

 

Edited by Gintrax

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I mostly run special cheer to guarantee momentum with 150cc or 200cc characters. I love abusing burst mode so chances are if I didn't win round 1, I didn't use/get my burst. That way if I win, I start off with a huge boost next round but if I lose I'm usually close to my meter being full and don't have to worry about saving it for round 3.  I just find it easier for me to win 2 consecutive rounds instead of round 1 and 3.

For 100cc characters I don't really have to worry about meter so I will run whimsical if the support I'm using is a fast charge support or support cheer if I need my support to be up at a certain time like Jirachi. 

 

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@Gintrax I appreciate your input on this matter. The video itself was meant to be very basic, mostly for newcomers. Most of the details and technical talk would happen here in this thread as I intended. But would you mind elaborating more on a few points? There are a few things you've said that I take issue with and I'd like it if you could add more details to your argument. Against Whimsical in particular. I'll be putting the sections I like to focus on in bold.

 

 

Quote

1) Whimsical as cheer not only puts your strategy on a dice, it also forces your opponent to adapt their strategy to the boosts you are getting. Constantly. Round 1 lucky bonuses are the worst, since timeout strats to lock out Whimsical won't even work there, so if you get really unlucky, the opponent might get the whimsical jackpot in round 1 and 3. This is my worst case scenario for tournament sets too, where sets are mostly BO3.

 

In the same way your opponent has to adapt their strategy to the boosts you gain, so do you. Let's say you get the holy grail right off the bat, 40% Synergy and maxed out Supports. You as a player still need to play in a way that allows you to maximize the bonuses given to you otherwise the gamble you took on it was for nothing. Same for if you get one support maxed out, or get nothing at all. Should you get one support maxed out, you as a player need to think "Is this a support I even want to use?" "Will this support help me out in this matchup?" "Do I know how to efficiently use this support?" (the last one in particular happens more often than people would think). With proper adaptation, the Whimsical bonuses are nothing more than any of the other cheer skills in the game. A mechanic to be played around, nothing more nothing less.

 

Quote

2) Whimsical isn't centralizing, but it can make a huge impact when combined with characters like M2 and Gengar.

 

In what way besides possibly giving them burst earlier? Mewtwo as a character stays functionally the same outside of having burst armor and a frame 1 invul BA. In fact, his iAD j.Y is actually worse as an air-to-air tool in neutral. Gengar is a bit of a special case, as his burst mode changes quite a bit about his moveset. Yet, it is not impossible to play around considering you know what each of his moves do and what the Gengar player tends to do. If they were to get burst round 1 due to help from Whimsical's "Holy Grail" that is not by fault of the cheer, but by the opponent who let it happen. Gengar already builds meter at quite a rapid rate, even without a synergy boost to start the round, it's not uncommon for a Gengar to end round 1 with 70-80% meter if they play it correctly. As for Mewtwo, if they're sitting on meter then that's something you can force out of them through pressure and forcing them to either pop burst or use a special which decreases their synergy meter.

 

Quote

3) Competitive games are usually in favor of banning luck based factors. Thats how the Smash Community turned their game from a party game, to a competitive platform fighter.

 

Aside from Smash, could you cite a few more sources for me? Smash is the only competitive game I know of that bans random elements outright without either testing them beforehand or reversing a decision later on. The most recent example I can give in recent memory is SFxT when gems were introduced. They were banned at first because anything out of the default could give one player a much greater advantage over the other. About a year and a half later, maybe even less, they reversed that decision and allowed gems but restricting it only to the default loadouts the game already had.  Even in your example of choice, MTG, there are still luck based decks that introduced luck based factors into a game so I'd really like to know where you're basing this off of.

 

Quote

4) For everyone who's pulling the slippery slope argument of arguing that "Croagunk is also RNG, should they be banned??", listen to this:
Banning a character is largely different from banning a mechanic and even then the important thing is the options you are left with in the worst case or in other words: Counterplay.

 

Oh boy, this is the big one and it ties into #1 perfectly. You've just said it yourself Counterplay. You may think it so but Whimsical is not a mechanic without counterplay, it's one that requires you to know the counterplay to each cheer as they come up. 

  • Did your opponent get the holy grail? Force them to burn their support in a way that doesn't help them while minimizing the synergy gain they get for the round
  • Did you opponent get Support Cheer for the round? Great, get them to burn their support or play around it like you would normally.
  • Did your opponent get 40% Synergy round 2 and get burst? Force them to pop it defensively, threaten the round or the game with offensive play. If you play it right, the only resource you'll have to use is your support.

There are ways to minimize and even negate the effects of Whimsical cheer with proper knowledge and proper play. To say that there is no counterplay is short-sighted in my opinion but I'd like to hear your take on what I've brought up.

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To add on to my last post. I was reminded that Smash, Melee in particular, still has Pokemon Stadium as a legal stage. A stage with transformation elements that happen at random, elements that only really benefit spacies. Same with Smash 4 and Lylat, a stage that tilts and adds a random element to recovery since not all characters can reliably recover on either end depending on how much the stage has tilted.

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I've gotta say: This discussion so far has really opened my eyes to how much Cheer Skills and counterplays are to this game. I, myself, only used to use Support Focused because I always wanted my support regardless of the amount of Synergy I had. I use Special moreso now, because I've become more comfortable with the game and with my Pokémon in particular. I never really thought about what other skills could do because their descriptions seemed kinda vague to me. More experimentation is needed.

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2 hours ago, Double said:

In the same way your opponent has to adapt their strategy to the boosts you gain, so do you. Let's say you get the holy grail right off the bat, 40% Synergy and maxed out Supports. You as a player still need to play in a way that allows you to maximize the bonuses given to you otherwise the gamble you took on it was for nothing. Same for if you get one support maxed out, or get nothing at all. Should you get one support maxed out, you as a player need to think "Is this a support I even want to use?" "Will this support help me out in this matchup?" "Do I know how to efficiently use this support?" (the last one in particular happens more often than people would think). With proper adaptation, the Whimsical bonuses are nothing more than any of the other cheer skills in the game. A mechanic to be played around, nothing more nothing less.

I'd like to hear a proper example on this? How are you supposed to deal with holy grail rounds? Obviously not lose but how do you actually adapt your strategy to something thats entirely random? Obviously not lose fields but what else? How do you adapt on a strategic level?

 

2 hours ago, Double said:

In what way besides possibly giving them burst earlier?

Actually my example are 100ccs and 250ccs. 100ccs are mosty able to burst after just one phase shift. While 250ccs should be able to get their burst when well played at the end of the round.
Especially with Gengar, this can skew the way some MUs are played due to Mega Gengar. I also expect the two players to be equally skilled so I won't accept a "just outplay them" response.

 

2 hours ago, Double said:

Aside from Smash, could you cite a few more sources for me?

The earliest form of Chess, also known as Chaturaji had used dice, which was also removed to make to game more rewarding for skill.
Early Street Fighter games up to SF3 inflict random amounts of stun with each hit, which would sometimes cause dizzy very quickly if you manage of maxroll a lot. This was also changed to a fixed amount for the same reason. (I know these are technically not bans, but changes to a competitive game to remove luck and reward skill.)


Regarding the counterplay thing. Yes of course a good Whimsical roll wont instalose you the game, but with my most favorite example, being Gengar, that really can change the course of a match. The lack of counterplay that I talked of was not referring to the actual gameplay itself but to the lack of reliable strategy you can come up with. Even when you avoid them winning Round 1 with holy grail. They can still get the same holy grail again. And I also wouldn't say counterplay is always that easy.
I like to say that I consider getting the whimiscal holy grail is everything with 40-30% synergy and the chance for that is a 24,5%. Not too bad. 
Also assuming both players are on an equal skill level, nothing prevents the whimiscal player to play the game to the best of their opportunities. The game literally gave them an advantage that they should capitalize off.

Edited by Gintrax

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@gintrax You were correct to say that there is no counterplay to Whimsical, but only when you separate the concerns of counterplay.  

 

There is no proactive way to counterplay Whimsical to mitigate it's effects unlike everything else in Pokkén.  There is only reactive counterplay to whimsical.  Every other effect or option in Pokkén can be properly mitigated in some form proactively, whether it be spacing, pressure, options, strategy, etc... Whimsical is the only effect in the game that you can't proactively counterplay, because it's random and uninfluenced by player interactions with no opportunity to put yourself in advantage or punish it.

 

That said, in my opinion the argument for Whimsical being uncompetitive is very simple.  The players lose control of setting the pace for strategy. You are letting the game environment set the pace of strategy in a non-fixed way.  This means Whimsical adds PvE elements to a PvP scenario, and PvE is inherently uncompetitive.

 

Since Whimsical can be dealt with in an isolated manner, banning it is not a slippery slope when the rule of thumb is ban uncompetitive elements if they're isolated.

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Our overall opinion isn't popular but after hearing his opinion AND his stance for whimsical, I'm on board with Gin 1000%. 

 

Also props to him for taking the time to logically argue the points that I currently don't have the time for uwu... 

 

Whimsical holy grail isn't broken but uncompetitive is an amazing point I couldn't  put to words myself. I think the concept that entrusting lord helix with the ability to randomly enable you to burst 10 seconds into the round with jirachi or potentially falling flat on your face with nothing is just that in fighting games: uncompetitive. 

 

Take a look at how people have championed fgs that do not factor chance elements in a mechanic , including smash games removing items, and sf random stun.

 

One player mentioned that in poker people don't complain and adjusts their play according to the situation. I say every genre should be treated differently to ensure balance. 

 

Ex: what if in overwatch, you have a cheer skill that let's you have 40% of your ultimates for your whole team's cooldown reduced? 

 

I'll type more if I have the time these days so I'll let the others carry on. 

 

Keep up the good discussion. 

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Having written many match up guides and support guide details in the past, I've gone through all cheer skills in the game, trying to make sure I could give as much information as I could on differing play style options and ways to optimize your own individual play (as Lucario at least, huehuehue). These days, I don't really write guides too often anymore, so I haven't shuffled around my cheer skill as much as I used to. Here I'll just ramble about the cheer skills I've tried lol. If you just wanted to read my post for a whimsical argument go see the spoiler tag.

 

Standard Cheer

When I originally used Standard, I did it because of the synergy and supports you gain on losing. I thought of it as a good "crutch" support that backed you up whenever things got bad. But as I continued playing, the game became more about having a specific support for a specific match up, and less about a support set for one. Because of this, winning rounds resulted in 0 gains from a Standard Cheer since it would just charge whatever support I didn't use for that MU 100% of the time (often because I was using the other one in round 1). Attempting to optimize it so I would get more out of the cheer would require me to run a support I didn't have as much confidence in a MU for, and this became frustrating as time went on.

 

This is actually part of the reason I started giving Pressure Cheer more of a go. If a match goes Lose R1, Win R2, if you used Burst R2, you have pretty much 0 resources for R3. Pressure on the other hand, gives you resources no matter what, so long as a R3 exists.

 

That said, I went back to Standard a bit later, and began to appreciate it when I got better at using a larger variety of supports. If you use a support set where you can use either support, it's not a bad cheer at all, especially if you're using something like Farfetch'd/Electrode.

 

Special Cheer

I feel like Special Cheer is probably one of the most commonly used cheer skills in the game, simply due to the fact that it rewards winning with 30% meter, which basically encourages you to win. Losing still gets you both supports, so it's not like you're ever really down on your luck either. The issue I found with Special Cheer is that supports are too de-emphasized. You don't want your supports ready only on a loss, especially if you lost a round with your burst used up. Sometimes supports are more important to have ready than your burst meter is, because the right support call can mean the difference between winning and losing a crucial phase. 

 

Special Cheer also basically restricted me to using only supports with 30s charge time max, which was bad for certain match ups where I would want something like Umbreon (IE Garchomp). It felt limiting to never have my support ready on round start unless I lost, but I definitely enjoyed winning rounds and having momentum with burst. But when you have meter and it's not full, it doesn't do anything directly to affect the match. Supports charge way faster than meter most of the time, and can have substantial effects on the match. Because of this, I started to move away from Special after WCS.

 

Synergy Cheer

Early on in the game's life span, I ran synergy as a means to constantly get Mega Lucario going. Though ultimately, winning and getting like 10% meter is pretty small of a reward. Getting 40% on loss was a great crutch but, again, it required a loss. Synergy and Meter only means something if you can get your opponent to think about it. At most they'll have to consider not phase shifting to field or extending a phase to try and deny you meter, etc. But there are still many instances where whether you have 0% or 60%, you fight your opponent the same way, and they fight you the same way. It doesn't change the battle dynamic enough.

 

Once you get there it's great of course, but without supports ever being auto charged, and playing a character like Lucario who has always had a kind of jank field phase, getting meter for "free" was too high a cost when the trade off was never having supports. Synergy is not bad though, it's just way more stream lined for a single minded goal: to have at least "some" meter whenever you may need it. It is a pretty inflexible cheer that doesn't reward winning, but it provides consistent support no matter what. I think it's a solid choice when you feel that you don't need supports as much in a match up and you want to rest easier with your synergy resource every single round. 

 

Since I discussed Pressure already, I'll go ahead and skip that.

 

Support Cheer

This cheer was my to-go cheer skill for the longest time for multiple reasons. As a training cheer skill, it allowed me to experiment with many different support sets at a rapid pace. It allowed me to play friendlies and learn how supports could affect a match up, so that I could learn more quickly which ones fit my needs and which did not.

 

Furthermore, as I got better at using supports, Support Cheer helped me have them when I wanted them. It's the reason why I know so much about some underused supports like Magikarp (did you know Magikarp also activates on all forms of clashing, throw breaks that don't crush, and burst declare waves?). 

 

In a more competitive sense, it helped me as a Lucario player because I had ways to turn the pace of a match around literally whenever I wanted it. As a general tool, having your support ready changes the pace of a match instantly. Knowing someone has Umbreon or Snivy changes how you do oki. Knowing someone has Eevee changes how you play your own burst mode, etc. etc. etc. Support allows a player to use their support to take control of the match at a consistent pace.

 

But I eventually used Support less because I wanted more meter. Mega Lucario is still a big part of his gameplay after all.

 

Whimsical Cheer

The support I use right now most of the time. I ended up using Whimsical a lot randomly throughout the first year of Pokkén, and I always thought it's random effects were actually not so bad that you'd always get crap. As I gave it more of a chance, I felt that the odds were actually stacked in the user's favor in terms of, at bare minimum, "getting something." What you get isn't always going to give you an advantage, what you get isn't always going to turn the tides, but you'll probably get something a good chunk of the time. 

 

This ended up resonating very well with me, who had basically used every other cheer skill and found some fault or some debacle in strategizing, because every other support just "didn't feel like what I wanted at that time." So instead of picking a "desire" and trying to build rigid, inflexible tactics around those, I picked Whimsical because it basically lets me run with whatever tactic seems appropriate at the time. Options open up and close. It could give me meter AND supports so long as I picked sets I was comfortable with like Standard, only sometimes, it was more rewarding. 

 

The biggest thing though? Access to it on round one. Synergy being the only other cheer that did that, Whimsical gave a huge advantage that no other cheer skill could boast: a quick boost to my resources on round one. If you are willing to accept that you won't form a single strategy revolving around your cheer skill, then Whimsical can allow you to perform new strategies that others unwilling to accept the risks will never have access to. 

 

For a time, I got frustrated at how often I got "nothing," but after playing other cheer skills and ending rounds without using meter "because it would be a waste to use it right now and possibly lose, should save it for next round." Or just never having access to supports, I got used to "no bonus" rounds. That made it easier to adjust back into Whimsical.

 

I truly enjoy the depth and flexibility Whimsical brings to gameplay. I don't pick it all the time, but when I know I can afford rounds with no cheer skill, I can pick this cheer with an accepted risk for a resource advantage. Ultimately, there are going to be rounds where you can get a jackpot, but if it's not on round one, you still have to measure up your resources vs. your opponent's. Sometimes, you'll get something like 10% meter only, but your opponent has Special Cheer, so you're competing with 2 supports or 30% meter depending on how round 1 went. Sometimes, you'll get a jackpot, but you're fighting Pressure Cheer on round 3 so all you have is a 10% meter advantage (which may not matter if you already have full burst because you saved it in round 2). But when you pick this cheer, you accept that stuff like that happens, and that whatever happens in other rounds may make up for it, and if not, you can still play your heart out, as the game is not won on a cheer skill. 

 

Anyway, less about me, more about this cheer in general. It is now under fire for being ban worthy and/or uncompetitive. For those of you interested in hearing debates about banning or not banning this cheer, here's a spoiler tag. For anyone else who doesn't care for that debate, the rest of my post is just for the discussion of cheer skills.

Spoiler

 

Pretty much everyone will admit: there is strategy centered around whimsical cheer due to the statistics and trade offs you have consider in using it.

You may get 40% + Double Supports on round one at times, but there will be rounds where you think to yourself, "I wish I was using another cheer skill so I could have _____ ready." It's risky to use Whimsical with supports like Jirachi, who have long initial charge times when you might get Whimsicott charged instead against Blaziken. There are going to be times where you have to wonder if you should use your meter to take charge of round 1 or 2 with no guarantee of any refills the next few rounds. There is a gamble involved, and the only certainty you have is that, something will probably happen on round 1 to make it all worth it compared to any other support.

 

People understand that when you run Whimsical, there are certain risks you must accept and some rewards you may earn as a result, and that nothing is guaranteed. 

If you use whimsical cheer, you do not go into a game with your plan being "let's hope I get 40% meter and Jirachi and pop burst ASAP." While sure, Jirachi Burst early in the match is strong, you still have to steer and you don't, you could just end up with no Jirachi, no come back factor and no mix up escape tool for the rest of round one with no guarantee you'll get anything that good again for the rest of the match. 

 

People will agree: it's not broken, and it isn't unfair.

It can give you a lot of meter and readied supports, but it also won't always do that. Your opponent on the other hand will have consistency on their side. After round one, you can face opponents with +40% meter, double supports, +10% meter, and well any effect of all the other support cheers while whatever you get, could honestly just be nothing. Sometimes you can get something, and it only puts you on even ground. You're really only doing this because of the round 1 possibilities. 

 

Yet it is considered uncompetitive because it is random. Chess, Street Fighter, Smash, card games, Pokemon, whatever, this is Pokkén. Do you really, honestly, and truly feel that Whimsical being random should be banned based on principle of other games that are not Pokkén?

 

I personally do not think you should ban something unless it is literally harmful to the game and its' players. I have not once heard anyone ever complain that they lost a match because of Whimsical Cheer. I have not once seen anyone complain in a tournament setting that someone's usage of Whimsical was uncompetitive. You know what I see more regularly? That people think Whimsical sucks, that people think that picking it is a meme

 

Why is it being random considered the same as being uncompetitive in Pokkén? It still requires strategy and thought like a support choice or counter pick. It still requires risk reward calculation like mix ups and reads. It still follows the games rules, so even if it is random, is it actually harmful to the metagame?

 

So why ban something so underutilized, considered to be fair, and that requires thought and calculation? Because some of us have been told that "luck and randomness are uncompetitive?" Has it actually been uncompetitive for Pokkén? Has it actually caused any issues? We went through the entirety of Wii U with it and nobody batted an eye. We have strong players who use it (like Double, Thulius, Flegar, and Japanese Garchomp player Guy), and we don't have torches and pick forks saying that their wins were unjustified and that their cheer skill was uncompetitive. Hell we don't even say the opposite, that "they would've won if they didn't use Whimsical."

 

I think even people who discuss luck in a competitive setting and why you ought to remove it most of the time would be open to the idea that luck is not always a factor you must remove. I think even they would be able to say, "because of the way this game works, that factor of luck is not enough to truly skew a skilled player winning vs. an 'undeserving' player winning." Are we truly incapable of accepting that Whimsical Cheer is part of how this game is built?

 

So the core argument has consistently been that other games consider randomness uncompetitive. I feel that I have stated that Whimsical has its' place in being an option that requires thought and calculation, that it is fair and it's drawbacks balance it out, and that even "lucky rounds" are not sealed. I feel that I have discussed that it has not harmed any players or the meta. I feel that I have at least defended it from being a mechanic that is unskilled.

 

The argument centered around competitive integrity should showcase how exactly the matches where whimsical has been involved had their competitive integrity ruined.

 

Edited by 五月雨のペンタオ

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12 minutes ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

 

  Hide contents

 

Pretty much everyone will admit: there is strategy centered around whimsical cheer due to the statistics and trade offs you have consider in using it.

You may get 40% + Double Supports on round one at times, but there will be rounds where you think to yourself, "I wish I was using another cheer skill so I could have _____ ready." It's risky to use Whimsical with supports like Jirachi, who have long initial charge times when you might get Whimsicott charged instead against Blaziken. There are going to be times where you have to wonder if you should use your meter to take charge of round 1 or 2 with no guarantee of any refills the next few rounds. There is a gamble involved, and the only certainty you have is that, something will probably happen on round 1 to make it all worth it compared to any other support.

 

People understand that when you run Whimsical, there are certain risks you must accept and some rewards you may earn as a result, and that nothing is guaranteed. 

If you use whimsical cheer, you do not go into a game with your plan being "let's hope I get 40% meter and Jirachi and pop burst ASAP." While sure, Jirachi Burst early in the match is strong, you still have to steer and you don't, you could just end up with no Jirachi, no come back factor and no mix up escape tool for the rest of round one with no guarantee you'll get anything that good again for the rest of the match. 

 

People will agree: it's not broken, and it isn't unfair.

It can give you a lot of meter and readied supports, but it also won't always do that. Your opponent on the other hand will have consistency on their side. After round one, you can face opponents with +40% meter, double supports, +10% meter, and well any effect of all the other support cheers while whatever you get, could honestly just be nothing. Sometimes you can get something, and it only puts you on even ground. You're really only doing this because of the round 1 possibilities. 

 

Yet it is considered uncompetitive because it is random. Chess, Street Fighter, Smash, card games, Pokemon, whatever, this is Pokkén. Do you really, honestly, and truly feel that Whimsical being random should be banned based on principle of other games that are not Pokkén?

 

I personally do not think you should ban something unless it is literally harmful to the game and its' players. I have not once heard anyone ever complain that they lost a match because of Whimsical Cheer. I have not once seen anyone complain in a tournament setting that someone's usage of Whimsical was uncompetitive. You know what I see more regularly? That people think Whimsical sucks, that people think that picking it is a meme

 

Why is it being random considered the same as being uncompetitive in Pokkén? It still requires strategy and thought like a support choice or counter pick. It still requires risk reward calculation like mix ups and reads. It still follows the games rules, so even if it is random, is it actually harmful to the metagame?

 

So why ban something so underutilized, considered to be fair, and that requires thought and calculation? Because some of us have been told that "luck and randomness are uncompetitive?" Has it actually been uncompetitive for Pokkén? Has it actually caused any issues? We went through the entirety of Wii U with it and nobody batted an eye. We have strong players who use it (like Double, Thulius, and Japanese Garchomp player Guy), and we don't have torches and pick forks saying that their wins were unjustified and that their cheer skill was uncompetitive. Hell we don't even say the opposite, that "they would've won if they didn't use Whimsical."

 

I think even people who discuss luck in a competitive setting and why you ought to remove it most of the time would be open to the idea that luck is not always a factor you must remove. I think even they would be able to say, "because of the way this game works, that factor of luck is not enough to truly skew a skilled player winning vs. an 'undeserving' player winning." Are we truly incapable of accepting that Whimsical Cheer is part of how this game is built?

 

So the core argument has consistently been that other games consider randomness uncompetitive. I feel that I have stated that Whimsical has its' place in being an option that requires thought and calculation, that it is fair and it's drawbacks balance it out, and that even "lucky rounds" are not sealed. I feel that I have discussed that it has not harmed any players or the meta. I feel that I have at least defended it from being a mechanic that is unskilled.

 

 

 

Personally I would never say I lost a set soley because of a cheer, and you won't hear people say it for many reasons.  I will say that I have been put into advantageous situations I don't deserve and disadvanteous situation that the other player didn't deserve, because of whimsical and that is enough in my mind to call it uncompetitive.  There are other reasons it is uncompetitive too.

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I'm just going to drop my thoughts on all the cheers since I did the research back in 2016.

 

The standard cheer skill places a focus on utilizing a combination between support pairs and synergy management in order to maximize every asset. Generally, most characters can rock this without having many issues. Some options are stronger than others based on the synergy meter needed for burst from each character. Characters running 100cc don't need this cheer skill as much unless they would like to ensure synergy gain for potentially bursting twice a round (with a combination of Jirachi). Those characters are able to benefit the most from Support cheer or Whimsical since Synergy requires less attention to satisfy.

 

150cc characters have a lot of flexibility to mix between Synergy, Special, Standard, and Pressure cheer skills. The synergy gain is plentiful enough to only require some assistance, but has less margin of error for losing Field Phase too often. All of the cheers drop down to preference, but can heavily influence the support choices.

 

Starting with Synergy (which you guys rat on) forces a player to abide by 20 & 30 second supports. With minimal synergy gain for winning, this reduces your opponent's effectiveness to lose via timeouts. 10% is enough to provide the boost for critical situations, but is also not enough to ruin your game plan. The biggest issue that comes with Synergy is winning round 1 to maintain heavy pressure on the opponent. Synergy balance requires a player to have the order: "Win, Loss, Win" in rounds. Losing round 1 oversaturates the meter, and forces a big decision to use burst in round 2 or save for round 3 (the exception being steamrolled to where oversaturation isn't a factor). Overall, synergy cheer is utilized properly when characters have strong burst modes to close out games. Everything else is played through clean play.

 

Special is useful for multiple situations, but can also avalanche like synergy cheer. Characters have more freedom between support pairing since losing a round provides max support for both assists, which enables utilizing a low cooldown support for the front end, and a specialized support for the backend. Stronger supports in the 40 second range (& Magikarp) are now available to aid in reversing the momentum of a set as well as doubling up on the usage of enhance supports (40 second recharge). This provides from creative usage for players to incorporate for matchups. The downside is how synergy is handled. 40% on winning a round is susceptible to being negated with a timeout, which then forces that player to approach and potentially lose or take the win without gaining any benefits. Include the fact that the cheer skill can potentially punish the player for winning round 1 makes momentum swings insanely harsh. The player wins round 1 and has to make the decision to maintain burst for round 3 or pop to close out the round (similar to synergy cheer skill), but losing round 1 means round 2 has to be closed out with a KO or else the benefits of Special Cheer is negated. This creates the order: "Win, Win, N/A" or "Lose, Win, Win" to maintain proper pressure throughout the set.

 

Standard is the support focused utilization of Synergy, where the player is focusing on the support pair usage in their strategy to maximize output. Synergy gain functions the same as the Synergy cheer skill, but without 10% extra gain for losing. That's a no-brainer, but the supports can minimize the impact of having incorrect round Win/Loss order. Support benefits function similar to the Special cheer skill for losing, but provide the flexibility direct to a more specialized support in case the situation changes. Most people (including myself) don't use the full benefit of being able to swap supports as the 20 second (& a few 30 second) supports are fairly powerful on it's own.

 

Pressure has been explained fairly well up above, but I don't think it's locked to 200cc+ characters only. A few characters (or maybe most) in the 150cc range can take advantage of it fairly heavily without much drawback. 150cc characters gain enough meter to acquire burst around mid-round or late-round, and through proper use the player can use burst for any combination (1 & 3, 2 & 3, or all 3 rounds). This is a huge tactic because it can only be weakened by negating field phase to the user or by winning the rounds fast enough to remove chances for massive meter gain. Support choices aren't a major factor (mostly 20 & 30 second options) unless you wish to swap to a specialized support for round 3. Even characters with higher meter can make use of pressure and have little downsides against it outside of a possible necessity for a specialized support (Umbreon, Jirachi, etc.) in specific matchups. The biggest difference is their ability to use meter for rounds 2 & 3 instead of potentially all the time like 150cc characters can get.

 

I will refrain from providing my opinion towards Support as it's my least researched (not including Whimsical) cheer skill.

 

Noting with Whimsical that you're accepting potential oversaturation of options and having a drought where your options aren't available. The jackpot roll is only a boon with a small subset of characters without proper resources to counteract them. Mega Gengar is the only character that could *potentially* be considered overcentralizing with Whimsical, but he still has to acquire the additional 125cc, and the option isn't reliable.

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5 hours ago, H2_ said:

There is no proactive way to counterplay Whimsical to mitigate it's effects unlike everything else in Pokkén.  There is only reactive counterplay to whimsical.

Yeah. Thats what I wanted to say. I just couldn't word it eloquently. I agree.

 

5 hours ago, H2_ said:

That said, in my opinion the argument for Whimsical being uncompetitive is very simple.  The players lose control of setting the pace for strategy.

I agree with this too, but others don't, so I think we need to dive further into why we think like this.
I'll explain that further down where I quote Scatz.
 

5 hours ago, Midori said:

One player mentioned that in poker people don't complain and adjusts their play according to the situation.

Poker literally is a game that requires both Luck and Skill to win. With that said, you can be the best player on the world but still lose if luck isn't on your side.
 

3 hours ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

Whimsical gave a huge advantage that no other cheer skill could boast: a quick boost to my resources on round one. If you are willing to accept that you won't form a single strategy revolving around your cheer skill, then Whimsical can allow you to perform new strategies that others unwilling to accept the risks will never have access to. 

I can see where you are coming from, but for me this is actually an argument against Whimsical for me.
Exactly because no other cheer skill can do that, Whimsical can actually be considered centralizing in that regard. And as I said 24,5% isn't too shabby for that job, going along with how I explained that Round 1 is the most important round to win strategy-wise, I don't see how this is a competitive strategy, since you use a boost you get by chance to overpower your opponent.
You portrayed well how this is part of your scheme, but exactly because Whimsical makes this possible, I consider it uncompetitive.

 

3 hours ago, H2_ said:

I will say that I have been put into advantageous situations I don't deserve and disadvanteous situation that the other player didn't deserve

I wouldn't venture into the realm of "deserving" things, but you got a point. More often than you want, you will find your opponent being in situation solely because of whimsical, and I admit thats even a sort of self-fulfilling prophecy, since the cheer can't always do nothing. But there are situations where whimsical can literally carry you a match and make you win, even though you made plays, where every other cheer skill in the game would have put you into a losing position. This is an issue that needs to be adressed.
I can see how this affects Characters like Lucario, Pika and Sui less, because of their good defense but at the same time I can see this be a crippling issue for setplay Characters that have to play lead and have poor defense like Darkrai, Garde and Sceptile.

 

3 hours ago, Scatz said:

The jackpot roll is only a boon with a small subset of characters without proper resources to counteract them.

Imo, that is simply not true. There are a lot of characters in the cast, that are really bad with playing on a disadvantage and Whimsical in the hands of a good player and skew the opportunities of an entire round in the users favor.
The perfect example for this is Darkrai, being both dependant on winning field and one of the weakest characters against SB.
Getting a 24,5% round 1 whimsical boost sets you up for the perfect condition to win the entire game. Let's say you are an 100cc character. Winning just ONE field almost instantly readies your Burst and allows you to save that burst until you enter field a second time, where you use it the decisively win field again. There is nothing much Darkrai can do there since their options against Burst are really bad. So you can argue that Whimsical is able (but of course not guaranteed) to skew reward ratios for playing correctly heavily into the users favor.

Since its random, and there are no proactive countermeasures for it. I consider Whimsical to be uncompetitive.
 

3 hours ago, Scatz said:

Mega Gengar is the only character that could *potentially* be considered overcentralizing with Whimsical, but he still has to acquire the additional 125cc, and the option isn't reliable.

This is way easier done than you think. As a tiny correction: Getting the 40% Boost turns Gengar into a 150cc character.
I'd argue this makes them get burst almost guaranteed, unless they misplay heavily or get outplayed, which will be entirely their fault.
Please note that winning phases is not the only way how to gain meter. Calling Jirachi twice gets you 60CC. Losing health until you enter rage gets you about 30-40cc.
The rest can just easily be obtained with CADC, playing a slow field to get meter by using moves or just straight up winning a phase.
A Gengar winning Round 1 based on a 24,5% percent basis should also be set up to win the game entirely, they literally are not required to get anything more from the cheer to win the game, if they dont play it stupid. They can save up ressources to win Round 3 while forcing the other player to win round 2. This will be a test of skill for the opposing player since (depending on what they run) they might need to save their ressources to win Round 3.
As you can see, they have been put into a really tough position, just because they might have just lost a single phase or RPS exchange.
Furthermore, Whimsical is able to just say "lmao" and give you another decisive bonus for Round 2. Allowing you to win that one outright, altough you could argue thats a gamble, but its worth thinking about if you are in the lead and able to close it out.

Edited by Gintrax

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So before I get into my opinions on Whimsical I would just like to say that I really love the in-depth arguments being formed by both sides, this is a legitimately eyeopening discussion and it's great. 

 

1. I don't think it's fair to say that Whimsical is "uncompetitive". It's still risk/reward that you have to manage and I would very much so consider that competitive. Competitive trading card games are great examples of this. If you make a deck with the intent of drawing each card in a specific order to win in mind you're probably not gonna win very often, therefor you usually build your deck accordingly and make it so that there's a low chance of getting completely screwed over by bad luck. They also need to think about their decisions with the chances of which card they'll draw next turn in mind. To paraphrase, just as you'll benefit from a strong foundation for your deck you'll benefit from knowing all the chances for each effect Whimsical can give, and just like it'll serve you well to keep in mind the probability of which cards you'll draw next it'll serve you to know Whimsical's numbers when planning ahead resource wise for the following round(s). All that being said, I still feel that it's best to avoid mechanics like this when possible to help with consistency as well as avoid those brutal "what if-"'s. I still wouldn't say it's "uncompetitive", it's something I don't like in a competitive environment when it can be avoided though. 

 

2. :Croagunk:=/= Whimsical. Let me state this: I dislike character's tools being based on RNG or having RNG elements to them. I also think how the devs went about an RNG archetype with Gunk was wrong, but that's a completely different discussion. Anywho a big reason why I think banning something like Whimsical is a much smaller deal than banning Gunk is because with an RNG character comes a lot of non RNG substance. Croagunk has jA, Poison Jab and Acupressure and they are all random/have random effects, but they're connected to a character who, outside of that, has a lot of moves that are unique and consistent. Most of Croagunk is consistent, but he does have access to chance if he so desires to roll the dice. Paraphrased: Gunk is a character with over 40 entirely consistent moves and 3 that are inconsistent glued on and to ban him for his RNG you'd be banning everything else his kit has to offer, where as Whimsical is gluing RNG onto other characters and banning it would just be banning RNG which is why we, as a scene, need to decided if we want that or not. 

2.5 Banning a character that people have invested many hours researching and refining is also different than banning a cheer skill. You can be comfortable with a cheer skill over others but they're 2 completely different things. 

 

 

3. Whimsical does not choose the outcome of a match, it influences it. I see a lot of people make the argument "it's still up to player skill", and this is mostly true. It is true that despite Whimsical being in play, it is still mostly up to player skill. It is true that you can play around Whimsical as you can any other cheer bonus. It is also true that a player getting Whimsical's "holy grail" (or anything but most notably the 40% Synergy and Max Support of choice) does in fact have an impact on who wins/loses the match. Yes, just because they were blessed with an advantage at the start of the round doesn't mean the round is already decided. Whimsical doesn't turn tables, it tilts them. The issue is it tilts them randomly and neither side has any idea who's soup is about to spill all over them. YES THEY COULD JUST PICK UP THE BOWLS BUT THAT'S NOT THE POINT HUSH!

 

My overall opinion: If we, as a community, can ensure a ban would actually take effect at all (or at least all large) events, I would indeed advocate for a ban. Luck based mechanics leave potential to artificially reduce the importance of skill gaps (even if it is small). I do still totally acknowledge that keeping track of odds and such is a skill in and of itself and the LAST thing I'm trying to do is shame someone who uses Whimsical, I hope I'm crystal clear in that regard. I also used Whimsical for quite a decent amount of time. 

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I guess this is the Whimiscal Debate topic now.

 

Alright, let's just get into it then.

 

Whim offering something other supports don't is part of it's perk. Support Cheer doesn't ever get Synergy, and Synergy doesn't ever get Support. We don't consider this unfair. Wanting to attempt to get a good roll on round one is a luck based strategy, but it comes at the cost of accepting not getting anything the next few rounds, or getting unhelpful things. You might even just get support benefits equal to or worse than other supports. Maybe you just get 10% synergy. There's a large chance you won't get 40%+2Supports, or even 40% at all. And for every 40% you get, you've probably gotten at least one Splash of a Whimsical. 

 

Comparing the RNG to Croagunk is only a matter of saying, "we can already accept RNG in this game. Whimsical is not nearly as impactful as a character who can literally prevent you from playing defensively or going for a time out." 

 

Legit, if you're a player who picks Whimsical in hopes you get 40% synergy every round to "beat someone who has a higher skill level than you," you may as well just hope they oversleep and get DQ'd, because that has a better chance of happening than a randomized cheer skill auto-piloting you to victory.

 

For Mewtater specifically, he has acknowledged that it is not an uncompetitive mechanic. He acknowledges that it requires thought and that it is competitive. And then he straight up says he doesn't want it because he doesn't like it. That's not how serious competitive games work. You don't just ban stuff 'cause you don't like it. 

 

For H2, the whole point of bringing up "nobody blames Whimsical for losses" is that if you don't actually blame it, and nobody does, then you can't call the skill broken. You have to accept that if it's not something worth blame, it is a fair tactic. The reason why you don't call it an unfair tactic is because you would have to decredit wins from players that I've mentioned and attribute their wins to luck of the draw over intelligent play. If you aren't willing to decredit those games, then they maintain their competitive integrity, and the outcome is what it deserved to be. How can you call the cheer uncompetitive but think the matches it is used in are?

 

For Gintrax, here's the big kicker to counterplay. Sometimes for counterplay, you literally don't have to do ANYTHING. Whimsical can counterplay itself. If you've used the cheer, you WILL get games where you get nothing 2-3 times in a row, and sometimes 2-3 GAMES in a row. Fishing for luck isn't always aiming at the top thing you can get. Some people run whimsical just because it gives them a shot at having a support to use in the first field phase. The trade off is that it could be a support they don't want or that they get nothing later. You don't need to make active decisions to counterplay it, but you can. We've discussed how you can time out someone to prevent them from taking advantage of special cheer, and you already said you could do the same for Whimsical. But more often than not, if you fail to time out a whimsical person, they're still not getting something to threaten you. 

 

But the fact of the matter is, what it comes down to is: "Is this cheer unfair?" "Is this cheer broken?" "Does it skew matches in ways it shouldn't?" For all these questions you need to cite where, especially the last one because that seems to be the big concern. For all the "what if they get the jackpot?" questions we have players who have already used these cheers in big tournaments, like Rokso and Tonosama. 

 

For Midori, why would you say we should "consider things genre by genre" as if to dismiss poker, but then literally ask "what if overwatch had whimsical" as if that wasn't mixing genres? Anyway, that aside, let's go ahead and talk about other games, since everyone wants to talk about how many games they know.

 

Tekken has random stages. We hate that obviously, but that game has a competitive environment where they live with it. The RNG could give you a stage with no walls and no breakable floors, or it could give you Geese's stage where some characters get near 100% health combos.

 

Starcraft Broodwar had a time where they reprogrammed the game to fix a unit cap from a 4:3 resolution data limitation. But they didn't reprogram things like units having a 50% chance to miss when aiming uphill, they didn't fix unit AI sometimes randomly going in wrong directions, or failing to attack when being told to. There were Reavers who were balanced by the fact that they had an 80% chance to fail to attack or have a chance to take 2 extra seconds just to hit their target.

 

SF's random damage may have been changed in newer games, but they still run championships with the random damage and stun count. 

 

Card Games (and many board games) are built around controlling randomness via statistics and likelihood. 

 

 

... but I digress. Something is not uncompetitive unless it actually lowers the amount of skill required to win with. Why is risk-reward calculation with whimsical not a competitive skill? Why is the requirement to be able to play rounds where you get nothing or at are a resource disadvantage not a competitive skill?

 

Why is it only when good stuff happens, it's unskilled? Whimsical forces you to play both sides of the coin. You don't just get lucky and win with it.

 

Of course it influences the outcome of a match, that's what cheer skills are for. Whimsical is not an outlier, it plays along with the rest of them.

 

If you want to get into subjective "deserving" and "undeserving," you earn your "jackpots" and "holy grails" by having to deal with slogging through "but nothing happened" or 10% synergy boost while you have full synergy or never getting that one support you would feel would help if charged. 

 

And, to be blunt. If this community, as a whole, groups together to ban a competitive and fair support cheer just because it involves random chance despite the existence of several competitive environments that handle randomness as a part of their games... I think this community will stop being a competitive one.

 

Banning something because you don't like it is never a way to go about the game. Especially if that thing you don't like isn't even unbalanced.

 

Do you really think people will think positively of a community that bans something that has existed for 2 years in their game without issue?

 

I know some people are happy to see discussion about cheer skills and what not, but it's actually pretty awful for me. I translated the data for whimsical a long time ago. Back when PA was still run by Gallivantz.  Nobody said anything about it other than "oh, huh" for ages. I haven't been around the community as often and I don't really go to tournaments. But I would cease any activity with it if it was the type of community willing to ban things it doesn't like.

 

 

Edited by 五月雨のペンタオ

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20 minutes ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

Comparing the RNG to Croagunk is only a matter of saying, "we can already accept RNG in this game. Whimsical is not nearly as impactful as a character who can literally prevent you from playing defensively or going for a time out." 

You didn't address any of my points about Croagunk and Whimsical being completely different cases here. 

23 minutes ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

For Mewtater specifically, he has acknowledged that it is not an uncompetitive mechanic. He acknowledges that it requires thought and that it is competitive. And then he straight up says he doesn't want it because he doesn't like it. That's not how serious competitive games work. You don't just ban stuff 'cause you don't like it. 

You can acknowledge something requires skill and has the potential for competitive validity without agreeing that it would be good in every setting. I also stated why I think that this game in a competitive setting is better off without it in the same post and they were more than "I don't like it". 

30 minutes ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

For H2, the whole point of bringing up "nobody blames Whimsical for losses" is that if you don't actually blame it, and nobody does, then you can't call the skill broken. You have to accept that if it's not something worth blame, it is a fair tactic. The reason why you don't call it an unfair tactic is because you would have to decredit wins from players that I've mentioned and attribute their wins to luck of the draw over intelligent play. If you aren't willing to decredit those games, then they maintain their competitive integrity, and the outcome is what it deserved to be. How can you call the cheer uncompetitive but think the matches it is used in are?

As me and you both already know, Whimsical can slant chances of success/failure but doesn't downright choose who wins and loses and based on what Whimsical provides the user with they (and their opponent) are put in different situations then if they weren't using it and got whatever they got by chance. It's impossible to tell you who would win for sure if it wasn't in play or if they didn't get that draw from Whimsical without a time machine. On top of that, this community is pretty respectful for the most part and people aren't going to discredit players that work hard because of a "what if-" scenario.

48 minutes ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

Of course it influences the outcome of a match, that's what cheer skills are for. Whimsical is not an outlier, it plays along with the rest of them.

The issue isn't that it affects the match period, it's that neither the user nor the opponent know how it's going to affect the match and it can vary greatly from round to round, game to game, set to set etc. The outlier is that it's inconsistent as opposed to all the other cheers that remain constant. 

 

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I didn't address your points about Croagunk because there wasn't anything I needed to address. The argument was never about equivocating Croagunk and Whimsical's RNG, the idea was only to compare the aspects of their similarity, which was their ability to do random things, and then discuss how the 'random' aspect of both things were tolerable to most players. The whole purpose of bringing up things like Croagunk and Faust is just to say "random isn't inherently bad." Yes people know the difference between the two. Is there something you really need addressed? 'cause if you want to talk about unaddressed points, I'm hearing crickets from my "why don't you guys point out how whimsical has harmed the meta or any match" argument?

 

Yeah, you said "luck based mechanics have the potential to create artificial skill gaps." But you were also willing to admit it took skill to execute these tactics and you were also unwilling to state any instance where this luck based mechanic has actually created an artificial skill gap. Your reasoning was not worded as "Ban it because I don't like it," but when you argue that something can be harmful but are unwilling to state when it has ever harmed anything, it will definitely sound as such.

 

You and others can talk about how you are being respectful by not saying that whimsical has been a core source of someone's success, but you can't have this both ways. You can't call this a mechanic harmful to the "skill-based integrity" or "competitive integrity" of the game without actually saying where it has done that harm. 

 

The closest is H2 saying he felt like he's gotten undeserved advantageous positions but that just cycles back to the discussion of "what makes it considered earned, and why is not having to play through the unlucky rounds not considered a part of earning the lucky ones?" Which was also unaddressed by the way.

 

The arguments for banning whimsical have typically been revolving around the ideas that it is harmful, or uncompetitive, or simply because other games get rid of things like it.

 

Harmful? Where? When? No one is willing to point out actual concrete cases.

Uncompetitive? We just showed how it requires skill in this very topic several times.

Other games? There are already plenty of examples of games with varying levels of luck based mechanics that still maintain competitive integrity.

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9 hours ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

 

 

For Mewtater specifically, he has acknowledged that it is not an uncompetitive mechanic. He acknowledges that it requires thought and that it is competitive. And then he straight up says he doesn't want it because he doesn't like it. That's not how serious competitive games work. You don't just ban stuff 'cause you don't like it. 

 

For H2, the whole point of bringing up "nobody blames Whimsical for losses" is that if you don't actually blame it, and nobody does, then you can't call the skill broken. You have to accept that if it's not something worth blame, it is a fair tactic. The reason why you don't call it an unfair tactic is because you would have to decredit wins from players that I've mentioned and attribute their wins to luck of the draw over intelligent play. If you aren't willing to decredit those games, then they maintain their competitive integrity, and the outcome is what it deserved to be. How can you call the cheer uncompetitive but think the matches it is used in are?

 

 

Mewtators thought of Whimsical not being uncompetitive is not properly though out.

 

He explains that is an effect that you manage it's risk reward, but you in fact do not. Whimsical is not something you manage proactively. It's something you react to.

 

It's uncompetitive in significant part due to it being PVE in PVP scenario. Control of resource strategy is driven by the game, not the player.

 

As for the rest I won't blame Whimsical for a set loss, because wholestically there's more to factor into a set. I will blame Whimsical for putting players I play against in disadvanteous situations they haven't earned and I will also blame it for putting me in disadvanteous situations the other player hasn't earned. I also do not acknowledge it as fair as it is worth blaming as I previously stated. There is too much putting words into other people's mouth that they aren't saying or not implying going on in some of these posts. I am willing to discredit those games as well. Like I said O won't blame Whimsical for winning or losing a set solely by itself, but I will say that given a completely equal matchup the luck it offers can be the deciding factor of someone getting or not getting access to burst the most powerful tool in the game. Such situations do not maintain their competitive integrity. So to recap while Whimsical can not be the sole reason for a win or a loss, as that is impossible anyways, it can be the deciding factor of denying or granting the strongest advantage state in the game. 

 

Only one player has to run it to potentially soil competitive integrity and it just gets more risky when two players are running it.  When both players are running it the most extreme scenario in a game is Max bonuses all rounds and no bonuses for the other player in all rounds. This is especially uncompetitive when it happens. But more than that 10% synergy all rounds is also uncompetitive when it happens. As is any combination of nothing, 10%, and only getting support once in a game.

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1 hour ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

The argument was never about equivocating Croagunk and Whimsical's RNG, the idea was only to compare the aspects of their similarity, which was their ability to do random things, and then discuss how the 'random' aspect of both things were tolerable to most players.

The main argument I made was that to ban Croagunk you have to ban an entire character for 3 moves. A character people have spent lots of time and energy practicing and researching mind you (Whimsical can take some as well but a character takes a completely different level of work). Whimsical is just RNG, so banning it wouldn't remove anything except RNG. 

 

1 hour ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

Harmful? Where? When? No one is willing to point out actual concrete cases.

 

We can and are making arguments without having to discredit players, it's unnecessary. And I've stated this twice now, but it's impossible to know what would happen without Whimsical in play/if they got a different draw from Whimsical without a time machine so discrediting players for their wins because they used it is stupid. 

 

10 hours ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

If you want to get into subjective "deserving" and "undeserving," you earn your "jackpots" and "holy grails" by having to deal with slogging through "but nothing happened" or 10% synergy boost while you have full synergy or never getting that one support you would feel would help if charged. 

 

You're right. In a vacuum, for the specific player using Whimsical, logically all the odds will balance out over the course of many matches. BUT you aren't playing the same person over and over again, so you could be playing someone and get multiple jack-pots and fight another person and get nothing several times, both of these scenarios out of P2s control completely. 

 

2 hours ago, 五月雨のペンタオ said:

you were also willing to admit it took skill to execute

Just because a mechanic has a skill ceiling doesn't mean it should or shouldn't be in a game. 

 

Something that just came to mind is that in Pokkén, we've always banned random stages and opted for Stadium only since the early Wii U days. In DX we've done the same, just now with different skins. Why do we do this? It takes skill to adjust to all of the stages advantages/disadvantages, does it not? Choosing whether or not to counterpick for the matchup while having to also play around the chances that you'll get stage counterpicked by the game, this could be argued as the same or at least a very similar skill-set that's required to play Whimsical, couldn't it? But we ban random stages because it has the power to change matchups at random. It can make bad good matchups bad or bad matchup super bad, the player that just got put (in my opinion extremely unfairly) at a disadvantage can still win but it's harder. Same is the case if your opponent gets good Whimsical luck. 

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This whole debate has become stuck. Allow me to untangle some things, as well as point out what we have acheived until now at both sides:
@Pentao has pointed out a very important points that needs to be adressed in an appropriate manner:


- Whimsical won't auto-win you games and most of all won't allow you to beat someone way higher than your own skill-level.

Since I already said that I don't think Whimsical in particular is broken but instead uncompetitive, I can't dispute this statement unless I am willing to discredit players a won game because they have been using whimsical. Even though it should be common sense, I will briefly say why this is impossible.

1: It's unsportsmanlike and rude af
2: Dictating a community how their game is supposed to be played and that there are "right" and "wrong" ways to do so, is extremely close-minded and will ultimately lead to a very stale unexciting competition and community, which no one really wants to be a part of.

Even though I might have come across this way with suggesting to ban the mechanic, Pentaos arguments have made me aware that I have taken it a step too far. I apologize.

From this point on, I'd like to focus this discussion on: "What are the strengths and weaknesses of whimsical and how to abuse them best" instead of "Should we ban this?".
This should allow for more open minded conversation from both parties.

Let us first try to agree on some basic points before we develop the conversation further:

- Are there characters that benefit from Whimsical strategies more than others?

- Are there characters that suffer from Whimsical strategies more than others?

- What Strategies in particular does the use of Whimsical allow a player?

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It depends on the bonuses you get.  Whimsical can be good or bad for every character.  The biggest issues are round 1 bonuses and round 2 or 3 no bonuses.

 

Round 1 bonuses can heavily skew how a match should normally flow.  If you get support round one then you have the advantage for winning the opening field phase.

If you get 30+% then it's like you won a field phase at round start.  If you get 30%+ at round start and win the open field phase you are guarenteed burst unless you choose to take shield breaks or you're a 250 CC character or Mewtwo.

 

Normally round 1 it's not guarenteed either player will get burst, except for 100 CC characters where it is extremely likely they will (unless they win 0 interactions and lose the round to a combo that KOs them as their burst meter is topped off)

 

For 100 CC characters best case scenario is running Jirachi, Whimsical, and on Round 1 getting 30%+ & Jirachi at start.  If they win the opening fiel phase they can pop Jirachi and be in Burst Mode within the first 10 seconds of round 1, then potentially get a second burst as well, as 40 seconds later Jirachi will be back.  

 

For 200 CC characters if they win the opening field phase and have a 30%+ Whimsical Cheer bonus then odds are they will get Burst in round 1, which is huge for these characters.

 

For 250 CC characters they too have a similar situation to 200 CC characters, but need to work slightly harder for the burst.  With 30% they start round 1 with 75 CC, with 40% they start round 1 with 100 CC (Which effectively turns them into a 150 CC character for round 1, and 150 CCs or less can regularly get burst every round)

 

 

 

Now on the other side of things, the other problem area is round 2/3 no bonus situations (or even 10% bonus in a lot of situations).  No bonus can be problematic for many reasons.  If you're at the end of a round and choose to use burst to close out the round while running whimsical, but you get no bonus for that prior round, if you lost you would have been better off holding onto burst, likewise if you won it may still have been unnecessary to burst.  Getting no bonus and starting behind on synergy in the next round is never good, especially the higher you are in burst tier. What's more is that Whimsical incentivizes you to use your burst at the end of a round in such situations, because of the benefits, but gambling like that is what can cause you to put yourself in a disadvanteous situation due to luck.  

 

Round 3 can be especially punishing if you get no bonus.  Your opponent will have a bonus if they aren't running Whimsical themselves, and if the opponent is running Pressure, it's especially bad.  Worse case scenario is when you have to use your burst to win round 2 and get stuck with nothing for round 3.  Odds are your opponent has synergy carry over from the prior round as you just used burst to win round 2 and you're stuck with nothing, plus they get their round 3 bonus.  This is less concerning for a 100 CC character as it's likely they'll get burst by the end of the round.  If you're a 150 CC character as long as you don't lose to them bursting earlier in the round in response to you getting close to full meter then you should be able to get meter as well even when starting from 0.

 

 

All in all, I think Whimsical favors potentially every character while also not favoring potentially every character. 100 CC and 150 CC characters who are also using Jirachi or a support that will likely win them the opening field phase I think are going to be more consistently getting results with Whimsical simply because the 30 CC from Jirachi/winning field phase is such a significant portion of their meter AND also of great importance, even if they get nothing these characters are likely to get burst once per round anyways.

 

This potentially means that in a 150 CC or less character match up versus a 200 CC or 250 CC, that the 200+ CC characters may want to make the choice to gamble with Whimsical, but I believe this is a flawed perspective.  I would instead choose pressure as the 200+ CC characters, so that you give yourself the best chance consistently.  With pressure round 1, if it's a 150 CC character you can potentially keep them from bursting.  Round 2 you will have burst.  Finally for round 3 you will be the same burst tier as the other character and get earn burst in that round just like they do on round 1, except you also have your support for the opening field phase.

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