Welcome to Nugget Bridge - Premier Competitive Pokémon VGC Community

Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to contribute to this site by submitting your own content or replying to existing content. You'll be able to customize your profile, receive reputation points as a reward for submitting content, while also communicating with other members via your own private inbox, plus much more! This message will be removed once you have signed in.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
  • entries
    8
  • comments
    32
  • views
    60

4th and 5th Generation RNG Calibration

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Cassie

326 views

blog-IV-Checker.jpgIf you are reading this, you are probably wondering to yourself “What is calibration, and why do I need to do this?” Calibration is something you do initially before trying to RNG one of your Pokémon games and it is an important step in learning how to RNG because it gives you an idea of what your calibrated delay and second are. It is important to realize that some sort of calibration is needed in all generations to even be able to abuse the RNG. The calibration process is generally the same in all of the 4th Generation Pokémon games, while Pokémon Black and White have their own calibration method. This article will cover both. Before continuing, however, you should be familiar with some basic terms used when discussing the RNG process. If you are not already familiar with the RNG process, now would be a great time to brush up on your terminology using the RNG Dictionary.

4th Generation Calibration

Requirements

Before calibrating you will obviously need both a 4th Generation Pokémon cartridge and a Nintendo DS system (this guide’s example works with the DS Lite; some things may be different using another system. If you have questions about your particular set-up, visit our RNG Help Thread), but you will also need the following:

  • Latest Version of RNG Reporter
  • Eontimer
  • Pokéballs
  • Pokémon with Sweet Scent (if you are not using a stationary Legendary to calibrate)
  • A general understanding of basic RNG terms (see the RNG Dictionary)

Basically, you calibrate your game by entering the game at a specific time, catching a Pokémon and then using its stats to determine what seed you've hit. This will give you your game's delay and second, which you will be using every time you RNG in the 4th Generation games.

Before calibrating you need to decide whether you will be using a Wild Pokémon or a Legendary Pokémon (more specifically, a Stationary Legendary Pokémon like Dialga or Palkia) to find your calibrated delay and second. this guide will cover calibrating with Legendary Pokémon. Save in front of the legendary that you chose with your Master Ball (not required but saves a ton of time) before you continue on with the calibrating.

So How Do I Calibrate?

To calibrate, you will be capturing a random Legendary (or other Pokémon) after attempting to hit a random seed. I will be using the seed 02060352 to walk you through the calibration process, but any seed will suffice. First, you'll need to understand how some of the software you will be using works. In the next section, I will explain how to use both Eontimer and RNG Reporter to get the information you need to be able to calibrate and then how to use these programs to calibrate your game.

Eontimer and RNG Reporter: How to Utilize Them

Without these two programs you would find that RNGing is nearly impossible. Both of these programs have very specific functions to take the "random" out of RNG. RNG Reporter tells you exactly what properties a specific seed has, while Eontimer helps you enter the game at the proper time. I will not be explaining the intricate details of how the RNG works, only how to utilize them to get results you want. For a basic introduction to what the RNG is and how it works, check out Toast's Random Introduction article.

Open up Eontimer. Depending on which game you are using, the calibrated delay you should begin with will be different -- for HGSS you will start with ~550 and for DPPt it will be ~650. Your calibrated delay will change after you actually calibrate, but these numbers are the easiest to use for each game initially. Eontimer is pretty self explanatory here: each box has a description above it saying what you put into it, so stick the delay  number for your game in the "Calibrated Delay" box. For the "Calibrated Second" box put 15. Your Eontimer should now look like the picture above. Now that you have these two numbers in Eontimer, it's time to open up RNG Reporter to find the "Target Delay" and "Target Second" and fill in those last two gaps.

In the toolbar along the top of RNG Reporter there is a drop down box labeled "4th Gen Tools". Hover over that and click the "Seed to Time" Option. In the "Seed (Hex)" box copy and paste 02060352, or whichever seed you have chosen to use, into it. Leave the year as 2012 and move on to the "Seconds" box. You should see a check mark next to this box -- make sure it is ticked. While you can use any second you want, I will be using 15. Add this number to your Eontimer in the box titled "Target Second".

For calibration it does not matter if DPPt or HGSS is ticked since they both have the same time and delay, so you can click the first Generate button now. You should see three categories of information: Date, Time, and Delay. For our purposes, we only need to look at "Delay". If you are following this guide and using the same seed, the "Delay" should be 838. This will be your target delay, so enter that into Eontimer in the box titled "Target Delay". Now that you have filled all four of those boxes, Eontimer is ready to use. Congrats! If you are doing this for HGSS the Eontimer should look like the picture below, and you are ready to calibrate your DS.

Hitting a Delay

Finally after all that setup you get to play your game! Hitting a particular delay can get complicated, so we have broken it down into steps. Pay close attention and reread them if necessary. If you are still having troubles, you can always ask in the RNG Help Thread.

  • The “Date” column in the “Seed to Time” box is what day you need to set your DS to. For this example we will be using the first data set that appears so set your DS internal date to July 27th, 2012.

  • The “Time” column is the time you will be setting your internal DS clock to. You will be syncing your internal clock with Eontimer at certain points when RNGing. For this example you will be using 06:54:15. However, before entering in this time, check Eontimer’s “Minutes Before Target” that is right below the actual timer. For this example, our "Minutes Before Target" is 1, so you will need to set your time to one minute before the target. Set your time to 06:53:00 but DO NOT PRESS A YET! 

  • Now that you have both your DS clock at 06:53 and Eontimer open, you want to hit A on your DS, starting the clock, and the start button on Eontimer at the same time. It does not have to be perfect, but try to hit them both together.

  • The timer will be counting down, giving you a little under a minute to set up your game for the next part. Shut off your DS and turn it back on. Wait on the game selection screen. When Eontimer hits 0, click the game title to start up the game.

  • After Eontimer hits 0, a second timer will begin. This second timer is much quicker than the first and is measuring your delay. Here, you need to get to the screen which has your save file on it as quickly as possible. Once you reach it, wait until you see the second Eontimer hit 0. As this timer hits 0, select the option that lets you continue the game.

  • Congratulations! You now know how to hit a delay!

Finding Your Calibrated Delay

If you've completed all of the steps of this guide so far, you should find yourself in-game, standing in front of a Legendary Pokémon. Intimidating it may be, but not near as intimidating as technical information needed to get this far. Use your newfound confidence and battle the Legendary, chucking Pokéballs, or, for easy mode, a Master Ball, at it until you catch it. Once caught, you can move on to the real work of finding your calibrated delay.

  • Open RNG Reporter -> “4th Gen Tools” -> “Find Seed by Stats”. Enter in all the information it asks for, and click Find. The picture below is what you should have, and anything in the red box needs to be filled in. After you've filled in all of your stats, select Find to generate your calibrated second and delay.

  • Write down the results you got for second and delay (if there is more than one result, pick the one closest to your starting second and delay). Repeat the steps in the “Hitting the Delay” section a few times to gain a few different data points. To find your calibrated delay, put the delay you hit most from your list into the “Delay Hit” box in Eontimer. Click Update. The number that pops up in the “Calibrated Delay” box is your new one.

  • Congrats, you have now calibrated your 4th Generation Pokémon game!

5th Generation Calibration

Now that you know how to RNG in 4th Generation games, you will probably find both the calibration process and actual RNGing in 5th Generation to be much easier (well, except for that pesky Timer0). Unlike 4th Generation games, you cannot use a seed to calibrate yourself. Instead this calibration process will allow you to find seeds for your game. This guide will explain how to calibrate using a Nintendo DS Lite, so know that if you are using a different system there might be slight changes in the calibration process. If you have questions about your particular set up, feel free to ask in our RNG Help Thread. This guide only covers calibration for Standard Seeds.

Requirements

  • Latest Version of RNG Reporter
  • IV Calculator (RNG Reporter has one)
  • Pokéballs
  • Pokémon with Sweet Scent (optional; only needed if you are not using a Stationary Legend Pokémon for this)

DS Parameters

You've probably seen this phrase used a lot when talking about 5th Generation RNG. Just what is this needed for anyway? DS Parameters are required before you RNG in Pokemon Black and White because they allow you to search seeds. DS Parameters are dependent on your DS and cartridge, so calibration is required before you can RNG at all, and they are different for every person. The process you need to follow to find your DS Parameters is actually pretty simple, so I will list them in steps.

  • Save in front of a stationary Pokémon or in the grass in the forest to the right of Nimbasa Town with a Pokémon that knows Sweet Scent. Shut your game off.

  • Open up RNG Reporter -> “5th Gen Tools” -> “Find DS Parameters (Standard Seeds)”. First you will be filling out the boxes in “Seed Encryption Variables”.

  • Fill out your game version and DS type since those are self explanatory.

  • Finding your MAC Address will be a little more difficult. To find your Mac Address, turn on your C-Gear. Of the three options click “Online”. Once you get to the next screen there should be little tools in the lower left corner, click that. The game will ask you some questions, say yes to all of them. It should make you save your game. After this, follow the steps in the following image:

  • You will not be holding in any buttons, so leave the “Held Buttons” section alone. Now you will be moving to the left side of the DS Parameters box. Go into your DS’s setting to the Date section. Choose any random day and set it to that. Put this into the “Date” box.

  • Go into the Clock option on your DS. Choose any time you please and put the hour and minute into the DS Parameter window. Do NOT press A to set the time yet. You will need to decide on a second. I suggest using 20 as your target second because you will not have to wait long. Put whatever number you choose into the Seconds box.

  • Now that you've decided on a second, press A to have your clock start at that time. Restart your DS and wait on game selection screen. You can see the clock ticking on the top screen, so use this to click the game title at the right time. If your target is 20, then wait until the seconds hand hits 19 and press A -- always click when the seconds hand hits the second before your target. Make sure you do not press or hold in any buttons after you click the game title. You can press buttons once the Copyright page comes up.

  • Continue until you arrive at the screen with the “Continue”, “New Game”, “Mystery Gift”, etc., options. Click the “Continue” option, but select "No" when asked to launch C-Gear communications. When it asks if it is OK to continue the game without the C-Gear on, click "Yes".

  • Now that you are in-game and standing in front of the stationary Pokémon or in the grass, proceed to talk to the stationary or use Sweet Scent. You should now be in a battle so just chuck Pokéballs until it is caught.

  • Now that you have caught the Pokémon, go to RNG Reporter -> “Pokedex/IV Checker”. Fill this out and click Generate. This will give you an IV Range for the Pokémon you've caught. Now that you have an IV Range, go back into the DS Parameters box and enter the range for each stat. You do not have to save the game, so once you are done with this step you can shut off your DS.

  • Click the Search button in the DS Parameters box. Write down the results and repeat steps 1-10 until you have consistently gotten the same result. This result is your DS’s Parameters, so you can now RNG in Pokémon Black and White!

What Can I Do With DS Parameters?

Now that you have your DS Parameters, you can search for seeds with RNG Reporter. The process to hit seeds is the same as what you did here, except RNG Reporter will give you a specific time to hit, and you will be doing more in-game to get the perfect Pokémon that you want. Check out the other guides in the Training section for how to search for seeds, as well as the methods you will be using to RNG your own competitive Pokémon. Good luck in your RNG endeavors!


Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0


0 Comments


There are no comments to display.

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now


  • Similar Content

    • Rhydin To A Top 4 Finish - 4th In The World Team Analysis
      By Ben91293
      Greetings once again fellow Nugget Bridge readers, my name is Ben Gould, better known as Ben91293, Ben912, and Ben*insert as many letters and numbers as you feel is appropriate*. As some of you may already know, I attended my first ever World Championship event this year due to my placing in the Birmingham Nationals (see here for my Nationals write up).
      As a first timer to Worlds, nobody expected much from me. I'm pretty sure people expected me to bum out at 1-5; even my oldest competitive Pokémon friend (Josh) thought I’d barely scrape into the top 32… Needless to say, I made anyone who downplayed me eat their words with my final placing, making top cut with a 4-2 standing in Swiss (7th seed) and finishing the tournament in 4th place.
      So, without further ado, I bring you my Semi-Finalist World Championships team!

      The Team

      This team has a somewhat different drive behind it than my Nationals team. The Nationals team concentrated very much on beating the newer and less experienced opponents that were likely to be attending, closing out matches as quickly as possible and countering as many threats as possible.
      However, since Worlds has a best-of-three set in each round of Swiss, I felt that a team with better bulk and the ability to change tactics on the fly would suit me better.
      (Below now is my process of selecting Pokémon as members and building the team in general – I hope this gives a little insight into how I approached the metagame and into how I decided upon my squad of six).
      With this in mind, I opted for a Trick Room core with faster supporting Pokémon. I felt this gave the team a solid grounding; this would allow me to open with Trick Room one game, then maybe switch it up if that worked poorly and go fast mode in the next. All teams that placed highly in previous years (Ray Rizzo's (Ray)and Wolfe Glick's (Wolfey) as examples) had this kind of flexibility behind them, and in my opinion, it is what makes a team capable of staying fresh game after game.
      Knowing I was going to opt for Trick Room, I needed a solid Trick Room setter that I could work with. I looked at Cresselia first, but in my past experience with using it I found that it gets walled too quickly and runs out of things to do. Scizor, Heatran, Volcarona and Metagross were all huge picks in the current metagame, and I wanted something that could go toe-to-toe with them much better than the Lunar Duck. I looked to the Ghosts to work with, as an immunity to Fake Out is always handy. Chandelure fit the ticket very nicely, but I didn't like how poorly it could take hits compared to my final choice, Jellicent. With no weakness to Rock, Ground and Water like Chandelure, Jellicent provided a good platform from which to build. Its immense bulk could be added upon with careful EV placement and it walled and beat all the Pokémon I wanted to check, which I listed earlier.
      The Jellicent I used ended up looking like this:

      Jellicent @ Sitrus Berry
      Trait: Water Absorb
      EVs: 252 HP /140 SAtk / 116 SDef
      Modest Nature
      - Hydro Pump
      - Will-O-Wisp
      - Ice Beam
      - Trick Room
      The EVs were the best I could find for what I had planned. Its Special Defence stat allowed it to survive a Modest max Special Attack Thundurus-T Thunderbolt as well as really solidify its ability to wall Volcarona and Heatran. The Special Attack investment secured the OHKO on a non-Yache max health Landorus-T with Ice Beam, always dealing 100% damage or more (gotta love that extra than 100% damage). This was the same for most other x4 Ice weak Pokemon such as Salamence and Garchomp.
      The moves I opted for are not uncommon for Jellicent, but not overly common in VGC, either. Hydro Pump was my first pick as I didn't like the small amounts of damage Scald did in comparison, if Jellicent was going to be hitting things first, it might as well hit as hard as it can.
      Will-O-Wisp was my favourite ‘obscure’ pick for it, allowing it to punish any physical attacker on the field that can't OHKO it outright. Metagross, Scizor, Tyranitar, Bisharp, Hitmontop and Scrafty, all of these were common and many of them had access to super effective moves. The burn helped to sure up the weaker of Jellicent's defences and really turned it into something difficult to knock out.
      My second pick needed to counter the many Tyranitars that I knew I would inevitably face. I also wanted a solid answer to opposing Ghosts and Psychic types, as I didn't have the super effective Shadow Ball on my Jellicent’s set to deal with them. Hitmontop was a good choice initially, as it had access to a variety of helpful moves and dealt with Tyranitar very well. However, it was too weak to the very common Cresselia for my liking.
      I went with a staple for most Trick Room teams and put my own spin on it, Scrafty.

      Scrafty @ Choice Band
      Trait: Intimidate
      EVs: 252 HP / 12 Atk / 120 Def / 116 SDef / 10 Spd
      Adamant Nature
      - Drain Punch
      - Crunch
      - Stone Edge
      - Ice Punch
      As you can see, this was one mean Scrafty. The extreme Defence EVs meant that at -1 from Intimidate, opposing Fighting Gem Close Combat from Hitmontop would only have a 6.25% chance to OHKO. This came with the added bonus of giving me a 50% chance to survive the same move from Terrakion. The Special Defence allowed him to take always survive a Dragon Gem Draco Meteor from Latios, and even Modest Hydreigon struggles to get the guaranteed OHKO. I deemed his Special Defence as more important in this situation, as I foresaw many more Draco Meteors being present at Worlds than Fighting Gem Close Combats, but I still wanted the reassurance that I could survive both moves effectively. Due to this increased bulk over the more standard Choice Band Scrafty EV set (usually just 252 HP /252 Atk / 4 SDef), this EV spread allowed him to stick around for much longer in games and therefore put out a lot more damage. The Speed EVs were arbitrary, I used them just to give me a jump over 0 Speed EV Scrafty sets and give me the edge outside of Trick Room.
      The move choices were simple, maximum coverage. Stone Edge always OHKOs Volcarona, even some Charti Berry variants pending their HP investment. Drain Punch was the go-to move, STAB with health recovery was very useful. Ice Punch nailed things like Garchomp or served as a more accurate way to knock out Flying-types if they were already damaged. Finally Crunch, secondary STAB and not something many Pokemon can switch into easily, and a very good answer to Calm Mind Cresselia, too.
      For my third slot, I wanted something to deal huge Special hits under Trick Room in case Scrafty was incapacitated early on. I decided that having my own weather to disrupt opponents was a good plan, and paired this with my now-used-in-every-competitive-team-I-have-ever-made Pokèmon, Abomasnow.

      Abomasnow @ Focus Sash
      Trait: Snow Warning
      EVs: 140 HP / 110 Atk / 252 SAtk / 6 Spd
      Quiet Nature
      - Blizzard
      - Ice Shard
      - Giga Drain
      - Protect
      A very classic Trick Room Abomasnow set. I altered the EVs only a slight bit from the standard, giving mine the jump over other Quiet Abomasnow outside of Trick Room and powering up the Ice Shard a fair bit with the Attack investment.
      It's a standard moveset for the reason that it works so well, nothing more to be said!
      So this is where I made the team a bit more interesting. I settled upon having a second physical attacker that would cover everything that the team was missing currently (in offence). I knew I wanted Ground coverage, as Ice and Ground pair together to form a very powerful duo, especially if they are hitting first. Looking at the slower Ground types, I noted Marowak and Rhyperior. I really wanted to get Lightningrod onto the team, as this would greatly assist Jellicent and prevent the very annoying Thunder Wave spam, especially against my fast-mode pair. I liked Marowak, but found its HP stat too low for my liking and this hurt his survivability for the way I like to play. Rhyperior was the second pick, but I desperately wanted the bulk provided with Solid Rock. So I turned to his younger brother Rhydon, the perfect blend of slow and bulky with access to Lightningrod.

      Rhydon @ Eviolite
      Trait: Lightning Rod
      EVs: 228 HP / 156 Atk /4 Def /120 SDef
      Adamant Nature
      - Rock Slide
      - Substitute
      - Drill Run
      - Protect
      Upon creating this set, I was skeptical myself if Substitute would even work for it. I gave him enough health to allow for 4 Substitutes from full health with 1 HP remaining, then I sured up his Special Defence to match that of a Tyranitar (with the Eviolite boost he attains 120 Special Defence, and therefore 180 Special Defence if Sand is up). With Eviolite boosting his already insane defences, this was definitely a monster on paper (hitting over 210 Defence in total). I tested and worked on the EVs and found that he didn't require anything near max Attack to perform, so I gave him the EVs above. He doesn't miss out on any important OHKOs or 2HKOs that I am aware of, and the extra Special Defence that I invested really made a difference in the matches.
      With so many Pokemon Protecting or swapping to try and stall out Trick Room, getting up a Substitute is easier than you may think. Once it's up, it makes Rhydon an even bigger problem for the opponent. In one match I Substituted as a Rotom-W came out at the end of Trick Room (already on low HP from earlier). Had I been without Substitute, he would have KO'd me for an easy win, relying only on Hydro Pump hitting. Due to Substitute, I had the reassurance that I could at least attempt a Rock Slide for the win, as my chance of hitting was greater than his. This decision won me that match. Another note on how easy Substitute was to implement, was that nobody really seemed to expect it... lots of situations occurred where a Pokémon would Protect whilst its ally reversed Trick Room, which would allow me a free Substitute and to still remain a huge threat.
      Without Megahorn on the set, some may think it struggles against against things like Ludicolo, Amoonguss and Cresselia to some extent. While this can be true, it should be remembered that you shouldn't allow Rhydon to be matched against the former two anyways. I didn't wish I had Megahorn on the set once through the entire tournament, and was very happy with the role Substitute played.
      So, with the Trick Room portion finished, I started to build my fast mode core. I needed two Pokemon that could happily function next to Rhydon and Scrafty, my two main picks for when I didn't bother going full Trick Room mode. I decided I wanted to bait Thunder Waves and therefore force plays. I wanted to draw in opposing Thundurus and Raikou, and then force them into being useless for the game while Rhydon sat there. I also wanted a solid way of knocking out the very pesky Fighting types and Amoonguss' that liked to ruin my fun.
      Latios was the perfect answer to all of these goals. Initially, I looked at a set similar to my Nationals build, with Light Screen in the mix. I changed my mind after a few games, deciding that the reason Latios would be so effective for this team would be due to his huge offensive presence and ability to crush anything not specifically built to survive his attacks.

      Latios @ Choice Specs
      Trait: Levitate
      EVs: 4 HP / 4 Def / 248 SAtk / 4 SDef / 248 Spd
      Timid Nature
      - Draco Meteor
      - Psyshock
      - Hidden Power [Fire]
      - Thunderbolt
      I fell in love with this as soon as I used it. The sheer power it outputs is immense, and since there is no reliance on the Dragon Gem to pull out big Draco Meteor hits, he can switch around often and freely. The first three moves were standard, with Thunderbolt being my primary pick for move 4. It applies great pressure to things Latios can't usually deal with such as Heatran and more specifically, it removes Gyarados from the field, something that threatened the rest of the team quite heavily if it was specially bulky and could avoid being burned.
      For the final slot, I wanted to search for a good counter to Breloom and Liepard in general. This meant I was going to be likely using a Lum or Chesto Berry to stop the Spore and abusing some kind of set up. Earlier in the year, I was playing around with a Volcarona set. I edited his EVs a bit and pulled out something that looks remarkably similar to some of the Korean sets.

      Volcarona @ Lum Berry
      Trait: Flame Body
      IVs: 0 Atk
      EVs: 240 HP / 4 Def / 8 SAtk / 44 SDef / 212 Spd
      Modest Nature
      - Rage Powder
      - Heat Wave
      - Bug Buzz
      - Quiver Dance
      This little bug had so much power before and after grabbing boosts, that Quiver Dance just had to be on his set. The choice with Rage Powder did the obvious, allowed it to eat status for other team members, pulled moves it resisted or was immune to onto it (my favourite usage of this in the whole tournament was using Volcarona to take a Will-O-Wisp aimed at Scrafty by Aaron Zheng (Cybertron)'s Rotom-W) and protected my more frail members. I could Rage Powder to take Grass Knots or even Bullet Punches aimed at Rhydon, allowing it to attack or set up a Substitute.
      Volcarona could just attack outright and dent a huge portion of the game, or I could simply set it up and attempt to sweep with its huge Special Attack and Speed. The 0 Atk IV was simply because I could, and it helped with reducing Foul Play damage a little. Nothing like being a little perfectionist I suppose…
      All in all, I loved the way this team performed. I do think it is hard to use, what with having a couple of 4x weaknesses on the team and two Choiced members, but with the practice I had I really think this helped me know who to bring into battle and when. Next, I will do a little piece on the team pairs I liked to play and things that threatened the team towards the end of the article.
      Pairings
      First is my standard ‘Set up Trick Room and hit them hard as I can’ lead pair.

      These two formed a brutally simple Trick Room lead. Lots of teams feared a Fake Out from the Scrafty and either wasted their turn in trying to prevent it, or allowed Scrafty the freedom to attack and put the Choice Band to use. I usually had Rhydon hiding away in the back, ready to jump in and eat flying type attacks for Scrafty or protect Jellicent with Lightningrod. Abomasnow in the back resisted everything that Rhydon feared and stopped Rain from being annoying, too.

      These two formed my hardest hitting pair. Scrafty bulked out Latios with his Intimidate and Latios covered the Fighting types that plagued Scrafty with his Psyshock. With the two Choice items out front, if they weren’t identified quickly enough by the opposition, they could easily be two Pokémon down by turn 2.

      I liked this pair for many reasons. Latios’ huge offense meant he could, more often than not, remove a Pokémon from the opposite side of the field right away. This usually gave Volcarona a fairly good chance for a successful set up and this usually spelled disaster for the opposition.

      Finally the only other combination I had imagined before the event. This used Latios’ powerhouse potential to wipe out a Pokémon and give Jellicent a free Will-O-Wisp or Trick Room. Switching Latios on the next turn was a no-brainer anyways due to the -2.
      Everyone + Everyone
      I could list everything as a lead along with everything else and probably justify many reasons why they would work, with the exceptions being Abomasnow and Rhydon. Leading with either of these two usually lead to bad things for me, and for good reason.
      Rhydon was best played hidden in the back and revealed only when stopping electricity/resisting something or when absorbing a hit like a Tyranitar Crunch was required.
      Abomasnow usually only performed exceptionally well under Trick Room conditions. That said, his Focus Sash allows for a certain amount of pseudo-bulk, and Ice Shard had a nice damage output.

      Threats

      Well, a kind of threat list. I'm not going to detail everything in the metagame and say how I would have countered it, rather just list Pokémon or strategies that worried me or made me think hard about how to proceed.
      Sun teams
      Okay, so I genuinely had a feeling that Ninetales would finally take its place as threat #1 this year. With eternal sun at its disposal and the popularity of Eruption Heatran, I was sure this would be a thing… it seems not. This team doesn’t like Fire Gem Eruption in Sun much, nor does it like fast, hard-hitting Grass Special Attackers.
      Set up reliant teams
      Thinking about my team the night before, it occurred to me that not having Taunt could be a big issue. Teams setting up screens, boosting with Calm Minds or even doing something like Guard Splitting Shuckle could have thrown a spanner in my works. I usually had an answer to the Pokémon that implemented these tactics, but a well-designed team played correctly could have troubled me initially. Also coming under this umbrella was the ever possible Perish Trap team. I actually played this in my third match and managed to outplay it to take the first two games decisively and quickly.
      Conclusion
      I was going to add in a battle report section, but my notes aren’t coherent for recalling battles, as I only noted people I played and the teams they had.
      My record for swiss was 4/2 –- I had the second hardest schedule according to the first opponent win %s, the hardest being an insane from 69.44% Enosh Shachar (Human), with mine coming second at 66.67%. I played Human again in the top 8 match ups and beat him to play against out eventual champion, Arash Ommati (Mean). This put me at fourth in the competition, and thus fourth in the world for the VGC 2013 season.
      Many thanks to all of you who have read this far, I hope you enjoyed my team write up and I hope this gave you a good insight into the way that I think.
      I want to thank everyone that I met in Vancouver this year, so cool to finally put faces to names on a screen! Shout out goes to all of team UK for our exceptional showing this year compared to years previously, and to my good friend and fellow player Josh Peat, without whom I would likely still just be playing with my Stealth Rock Cradily on Coliseum. Props to him for helping with the title, too.
      Hope to see you all again in Washington DC for 2014!
    • Pokémon Dream Radar With RNG Reporter: An RNG Guide
      By HeroOfTheWinds
      Pokémon Dream Radar for the Nintendo 3DS is the main method of capturing the Therian Formes of Tornadus, Thundurus and Landorus: at some point or another, most RNGers with at least moderate skill have sought to RNG these Pokémon and others from Dream Radar, only to find that RNG Reporter has no option for it, and learn that they can only RNG them if they have PPRNG, the Mac equivalent of RNG Reporter.  However, most of them do not realize that it IS entirely possible to RNG Dream Radar Pokémon using RNG Reporter's Researcher.  That is where this guide comes in to help!
      Prerequisites and Preparation
      Before starting, make sure you are familiar with the calibrate your Pokémon Black 2 or White 2 cartridge.  You will need the following to perform this RNG:

      RNG Reporter
      Pokémon Black 2 or White 2
      A Nintendo 3DS and a copy of Pokémon Dream Radar
      Your DS’s parameters; see the Calibration Guide for how to find this.

      Additionally, while one would initially think you can only RNG Dream Radar Pokémon using a 3DS, you can use any DS to RNG them after they have been sent to the game from the Dream Radar app, and hence a DS Lite is recommended.
      Before going any farther with this guide, it is suggested you catch one or two regular Pokémon (without capturing Tornadus-Therian) inside the Dream Radar app in order to practice RNGing them.  This is imperative, as this form of RNGing has zero margin for error, meaning that you should be comfortable with it before trying to get a Legendary or Therian Pokémon, as those can only be transferred to a game once per Dream Radar save and once per Black 2/White 2 game save.  Also, you must transfer any non-legendary Pokémon to your game card before capturing and RNGing a Legendary or Therian, since a method for RNGing Legendaries while sending another Pokémon has not been researched yet, and doing so will cause your RNG attempt to fail.  On the plus side, all Therians and Legendaries are captured within their own Radar Extensions, so it is incredibly easy to avoid sending other Pokémon with them.
      Backing up the SD card before RNGing important Pokémon
      One of the most limiting quirks with Dream Radar RNGing is that you can only transfer each Legendary Pokémon or Therian once per Dream Radar save file, and each game card of Black 2 or White 2 can only receive a Dream Radar Legendary or Therian once without restarting the game.  Due to this inconvenience, anyone would like to have at least a small safety blanket, right?  That comes in the form of backing up your save file before transferring the Pokémon.  This has two perks: first, if you fail to RNG a Pokemon correctly, you won't have to play Dream Radar all over again and get 3000 Dream Orbs for that Landorus-Therian, and second, you can transfer the same Pokémon to multiple game cartridges (as long as you are willing to RNG it again).  The process is simple: put your 3DS' SD card into a computer, and make a copy of the folder titled "Nintendo 3DS".  This will back up all your downloaded games' save files, so it is equally important to backup your current folder contents before overwriting it with an older backup that contains a Therian or Legendary.
      Familiarizing yourself with the seed verification method
      One of the more unique aspects of RNGing Dream Radar Pokémon is that you can actually verify your seed before receiving your RNGed Pokémon.  Additionally, you must use this same tool to advance the frames and hit the one you are aiming for.  This tool is the spinning icon used while waiting for wireless communication on the IR Key Transfer screen that tells you to keep waiting, which will hereafter be referred to as the "spinner."  The way it works is you need to watch the direction it is pointing immediately when it appears, and it requires attention as it moves pretty fast.  Unfortunately, RNG Reporter does not simply use arrows to tell you which direction it should point if you have hit your seed like PPRNG does.  Fear not, as the method outlined below using the Researcher function of RNG Reporter gives you numbers that correspond to each of the eight directions.  They are as follows:
      0 = up, 1 = up-right, 2 = right, 3 = down-right, 4 = down, 5 = down-left, 6 = left, and 7 = up-left



      How it works
      By now you are probably wondering just how Dream Radar RNGing works and why it is different from the other 5th Generation RNG methods.  The following sections will break it down for easy comprehension.
      Advancing the IV and PID Frames
      Perhaps one of the largest influences on the RNG is that the IV Frames and the PID Frames are both advanced simultaneously by two frames each.  Hence, while searching for seeds, you will be forced to only accept results with either even- or odd-numbered target frames, depending on your starting IV frame, which varies depending on the Pokémon being RNGed.  Furthermore, as both frames are advanced at once, you will have no control over what PID frame you hit.  The logical extension of this is that you will have to search through multiple seeds until you find one on which the Nature you are looking for ends up on the frame "attached" to the seed.
      Transfer Slots
      Another unique aspect of RNGing Dream Radar Pokémon is that there are "slots" in which the Pokémon are sent, since Dream Radar allows up to six Pokémon to be transferred at once.  Additionally, the frames for both IVs and PIDs are advanced for each Pokémon transferred.  If this weren't the case, you would be able to get six Adamant penta-flawless Pokémon at once!  Additionally, the amount by which the frames are advanced varies slightly depending on if the Pokemon in the preceding slots are genderless or not, such as Porygon and Beldum.  However, all the Therians and Legendaries in Dream Radar do not occupy normal transfer slots, and instead have their own separate slots.  The mechanics for these slots, however, are in most ways identical to regular slot 1 and slot 2 transfers, and shall be covered more in-depth later.
      The Memory Link PID offset
      An important note must be made concerning the use of the Memory Link option in the Unova Link menu.  Not only does it affect your starting PID frame for every RNG, but it also causes an additional -1 offset when RNGing Dream Radar Pokémon!  If you have used Memory Link, take this into account while searching for a seed with the desired Nature and when verifying if you hit your timer0 (more info on both later on).  However, there is a rather curious bug in the game programming that causes some people's game cards to be treated as if they have used Memory Link, whether or not they really have!  Fret not, as this offset is tied to the game cartridge rather than the seed, so as long as you determine if your cart is affected by this, you can account for it in all future RNG attempts. This is the main reason that it is important to practice this RNG at least once per cartridge before attempting to RNG a Therian or 4th Generation Legend!
      So! On to the main event!
      Finding Seeds
      Under most circumstances, finding a seed is the most time-consuming part of trying to RNG Pokémon from Dream Radar while using RNG Reporter.  This stems from the fact that RNG Reporter has no built-in tool for finding Dream Radar seeds, and hence you need to search through the seeds manually.  Thankfully, it sounds worse than it is, and once you are familiar with the process, it can actually be done fairly quickly (as long as you aren't too unlucky).
      Using the Time Finder and selecting seeds
      The first step is to start up RNG Reporter and open the 5th Generation Time Finder window.  For the sake of brevity, only slots one and two, which are the only ones used for RNGing Therians and Legendaries, will be discussed in the main body of this guide.  First, set the year you would like to RNG in, and select all twelve months.  Due to the rarity of seeds with a useful Nature attached to them, you want to give yourself a wide variety of seeds.  Next, set the min and max frames.  Since it is possible to verify that you have correctly hit your seed with this RNG while you are advancing the frame, it is recommended that you set the minimum frame to at least 8 frames above the starting frame, so that you will have four advancements with which to verify your seed.  It is incredibly rare to have two seeds with the same sequence of the first four spinners.  As far as the max frame goes, set it to at least 50 frames above the minimum, in order to have a good spread of seeds (but don't go too high; otherwise you will be sitting for 20 minutes advancing the frame for no good reason).  After you have set the min and max frames, enter your desired IV spread, allowing yourself the widest variety of IV spreads as you are willing to accept.  Of course, if you are aiming for something like HP Flying Thundurus, you would still like a decent base power for Hidden Power... which is why RNG Reporter has a helpful pair of options, HP_E and HP_O, which only search for IVs that would create a Base 70 power for Hidden Power.  If you are using these options, it is recommended to add another 50 or so frames to the max frame.  Leave everything else blank, and your screen should look something like the one below:

      Now here's where Transfer Slots come into play.  The starting frame for IVs when RNGing Dream Radar Pokémon is 8.  Because the starting frame for IVs advances 13 after each Pokémon transferred, and because frames can only be advanced two at a time, slots 1, 3 and 5 can only use even seeds (such as the ones above ), and slots 2, 4 and 6 can only use odd seeds.  A useful trick that can be used while doing this is to add eight to the starting frame to automatically give you 4 advancements for verification purposes.  If this is done, you can always set your minimum frame for slot 1 Pokemon to 16, and 29 for slot 2 Pokemon.  After slot 2, just add another 13 to the number for each slot.  For the purposes of this guide, I will use the first seed listed in the window above (highlighted in blue) to illustrate this process.
      Finding the Nature hit
      So now that you have a list of possible seeds, it's time to search through them until you find a good Nature!  Go back to the main window of RNG Reporter, change the method to "Gen 5 PIDRNG", set Max Results to somewhere between 100 and 300, copy a suitable seed from the Time Finder into the appropriate box, and check the box labeled "Black White 2?".  If you have used Memory Link on the game you are RNGing with, check the Memory Link box as well, and then click "Calculate Initial PIDRNG Frame".  Now that you have your starting frame for PIDs, click Generate to create a list of Natures.  Be aware that Dream Radar Pokémon cannot be Shiny, so there is no sense in searching for a Shiny frame.  As of this time, it has not been determined how Dream Radar generates a Pokémon's gender, but it usually will be female, so you can ignore everything but the Natures.  Besides, considering that you can breed any female Dream Radar Pokémon for a different gender later on, this is purely trivial.  Your main window should look something like this before clicking Generate:

      So that's all fine and good, but what frame will I actually hit?  The frame you hit is determined by the following equation:
      Nature Frame = Initial PID frame + offset + (IV target Frame - [8 + {13 * slots before current slot}]) + (5 * number of slots before current slot)
      This equation looks a bit daunting at first, but it can be greatly simplified as long as you are only RNGing in slots 1 or 2.  Here are the simplified forms:
      Slot 1: Nature Frame = Initial PID Frame + offset + IV target Frame - 8
      Slot 2: Nature Frame = Initial PID Frame + offset + IV target Frame - 16
      In these equations, "offset" is equal to 1 for genderless Pokémon, and 2 for Pokémon that have a gender.  Since most of the Pokémon from Dream Radar have genders, usually you can treat offset as 2.  Furthermore, game cards that have used Memory Link or act as if you have will possess an additional offset of -1. Whether or not your game is treated as if it has used Memory Link can be determined the first time you RNG a Pokémon from Dream Radar. (More on that below.)
      Using the seed I chose earlier, my target frame is 42 and my initial PID Frame is 51, so if I plug those numbers into the Slot 1 equation, I get:
      Nature Frame = 51 + 2 + 42 -8 = 87
      Hence, the Nature my Pokémon would have is Sassy.  However, since my card acts as if I have used Memory Link, the Nature Frame will be 86 instead, making it Quirky, as shown in blue below.  On a side note, if I was transferring a genderless Pokémon such as Porygon or Beldum, the offset would be one instead of two, making the Nature Relaxed. (shown in red)

      Mechanics for Therians and Legendaries
      As stated earlier, Therians and Legendaries have their own transfer slots.  But how do these work?  The simple answer is that they work almost no different from regular slot 1 and slot 2 RNGs... almost.  Therians are RNGed as if they are gendered Pokémon that are in slot 2 with a gendered Pokémon in slot 1 (although there really isn't one there).  Therefore, you can use the short form of the slot 2 equation given above without any problem.  The "4th Generation Mascot" Legendaries are even simpler than Therians.  They behave exactly like slot 1 gendered Pokémon, making the matter almost trivial.  However, it must always be remembered that unless you back up your Dream Radar save file and have multiple Black 2 or White 2 game cards (or are willing to restart them), you only have one chance to RNG each of these.  Hence, you should never under any circumstances transfer any other Pokémon with these Therians and Legendaries, since it has not been researched how other Pokémon affect the special transfer slots, nor has it been attempted to transfer multiple special Pokémon at once.
      RNGing the Pokémon
      Now that you've found a good seed to RNG with, it's time to actually get that Pokémon!
      Sending it from Dream Radar
      The first step is to place the cartridge you would like to RNG with into your 3DS, and enter the Dream Radar app.  If you are transferring a Therian or a Legendary, here is the point to back up the SD card!  On the main menu, select "Send Research Data", and make sure that the Pokémon you wish to RNG is in the slot that corresponds to the seed you found.  If it isn't, you need to find a new seed, taking into account what slot it is in.  Additionally, items do not affect the RNG process, so they can be ignored for all intents and purposes.  If everything is correct, confirm that you are ready to send the Pokémon.  After it is sent, you can turn off the 3DS and put the game cartridge into the DS you wish to RNG with.
      Hitting and verifying your seed
      Now, to get to the heart of the process of RNGing Dream Radar Pokémon: hitting and verifying your seed!  Since verifying your seed takes place at the same time as advancing frames, this guide will go straight to verification.  In the main window of RNG Reporter, click "Researcher" on the right side of the toolbar at the top of the window.  A fairly sterile window with a decent amount of buttons and text entry fields will appear.  Next to "Common RNGs", open the drop-down list and select BWRNG.  Then to the right, next to "Custom 1", set the first list to "32Bit High", set the second to ">>", and enter the number 29 into the text box.  This information will allow RNG Reporter to list the directions the waiting icon will point to while verifying your seed and advancing the frames.  Set Max Results to a number somewhere around three or four hundred.  Paste the seed you are RNGing with into the corresponding box, and your window should look something like below:

      If everything is correct, click Generate, and a list of the seeds corresponding to the frames of the seed you are using will appear, in addition to a row of columns marked "Custom 1", "Custom 2", etc.  Thanks to all those boxes you set values in, the "Custom 1" column will show a number between 0 and 7  next to each frame.  That number tells you what direction the waiting spinner will be pointing when it starts on that frame, allowing you to test if you really hit your timer0!  The process of verifying your seed is very easy, if not attention-demanding: after turning on the DS on-time as if you were hitting a Simple Seed, enter the "Unova Link" menu instead of loading your save file.  From there, enter the "Key System" menu and select "Send and Receive Keys".  The game will ask if you would like to launch DS Wireless Communications, and if you say yes, the game will prompt you to have your DS system face another, and a waiting spinner will appear in the lower right.  Of course, we are only interested in the spinner!  Make sure you are watching the lower right corner when you say "Yes", and take note of which direction the icon was pointing when it started spinning.  It moves fast, so it requires all your attention.  Press B to stop it, write down what direction it was pointing when it started, but do not leave the menu yet. Both the IV frame and the PID frame were just advanced by 2!  When you try hitting your seed, you need to continually stop and restart the spinner to advance the frame as far as necessary.  The question is, how many times do you have to do it?  The number of times you need to advance the frame is derived from this equation:
      Advancements = (IV target Frame - 8 + [13 * slots before current slot]) ÷ 2
      So, the next step is to confirm if you really hit your seed.  This is one of the places where your game card's Memory Link frame offset comes into account, and is identified for the first time in the event of your game acting as if it has used Memory Link.  In the researcher window, scroll to the frame before your starting PID frame (as given in the main window).

      So, if you look at the image above, you will see a table of frames and seeds that is similar to what you should see at this point.  After you go through the process of hitting your seed, try verifying it using the method stated above.  If your game has not used Memory Link and does not act as if you have, the first spinner should correspond to the frame after your initial frame.  For example, the seed in the image above has a starting frame of 51, so the first spin should land on 52, pointing to the upper left (7).  Each of the following advancements will appear every other frame after the first, so the next 4 in the image would be 2-0-3-1, that is, right, up, bottom-right, top-right.  However, if you have that Memory Link offset, the first advancement will occur directly on the starting frame, and all the following spins will be in essence one frame before the regular.  The frames with a light blue box around them in the above image illustrate this. Remember, if you find at this stage that you have a PID offset of -1, your Nature frame will also be one less than the one derived from the earlier equation.
      If after advancing the frame four times it appears that you have not hit your seed (checking both the regular sequence of frames and the offset-influenced sequence), you need to try again, since you doubtlessly missed your timer0.  Once you have determined that you hit your timer0, all that is left is to finish doing as many advancements as determined by the equation above.  Now, to receive the Pokémon in-game and check if you succeeded!
      Receiving your Pokémon - Success?
      Leave the Key Transfer menu, but do not leave the Unova Link menu.  Should you do so, the RNG will be reseeded and you will need to try hitting your seed again.  Go to the 3DS Link menu, and say yes to receiving your Pokémon from Dream Radar.  The game will save, and then you can leave Unova Link and enter the game.  Go to any PC and open the storage system, find the newly-transferred Pokémon, and place it in your party.  Take it to the Judge in the Battle Subway.  If everything was done right, your Pokémon should have the IVs you found in the Time Finder!  That is the part you can be more certain of success with.  If for some reason your IVs are incorrect, you probably did the wrong number of advancements or missed your timer0.  The latter can be avoided by always allowing for at least four advancements, after which you can be reasonably sure that you hit the right one.
      Now for the more uncertain part: did you get the right Nature?  Open the status screen of your RNGed Dream Radar Pokémon, and check the Nature.  If you didn't run into any indications of an offset, you should have the right Nature!  If you don't, go to the main window of RNG Reporter, and look at the frame right before the expected Nature.  Chances are, it will match the Pokémon you just got, indicating that your game card behaves as if you used Memory Link.  The good news is that (hopefully) it was only a practice Pokémon, and you can count on all further RNGs with that game card having the offset! (Which is easily worked around by taking it into account while checking the Nature paired with each seed.)
      Conclusion
      Well, it is a tough road to RNGing your first Pokémon from Dream Radar, but now you can take pride in having successfully learned one of the most complicated RNG processes out there.  After the first one, all future Dream Radar RNGs will hardly be difficult at all, and with patience you can have access to all sorts of Dream Radar exclusive Dream World Pokémon!  Good luck, and happy RNGing!
    • Improbability Drive: A Guide to Probability in Pokemon Battles
      By HeroOfTheWinds
      Hax. A phenomenon known the whole world over that has caused thousands of dc's and rage quits. A startling number of players curse this entity without any idea of how little (or much) reason there is to be upset. Like all RPG's, Pokémon is no different in its incorporation of luck, ranging from full paralysis to critical hits. But just how random are these events? This is the question that this article will answer, and hopefully knowledge of these chances will help players to realize more fully the weight of luck in the game and its consequences.
      Special Conditions
      So in just what ways can random events affect battles? Well, look no farther than the most common means of placing opponents into the menacing palm of the RNG: special conditions. These effects tend to have fairly low chances of being inflicted or taking effect, and yet they are the easiest to cause due to the large number of means by which they may occur.  Be aware, however, that all special conditions except Infatuation can be blocked by Safeguard or Lum Berry. Now, to take a closer look at each one and its causes:
      Paralyze: Grinding into a static halt
      As the heading of this section suggests, the primary cause of the paralyze condition is the wide variety of Electric moves. Just what does this shock you with? Try a 25% chance of being completely unable to use a move. As if that wasn't enough of a cripple (pun intended, naturally), the Pokémon's speed drops to an astonishing 25% of it's original value. But with every cloud comes a silver lining, and in this case, it's the fact that no move has anything higher than a 30% chance of causing paralysis, barring Thunder Wave and Zap Cannon, which always inflict it. Notable among the moves with a 30% chance are Thunder and Discharge, due to their fairly common use in VGC. Note that the ever-standard Thunderbolt also has a 10% chance to cause it. Additionally, it would be remiss to neglect mentioning that the Static and Effect Spore abilities also can cause paralysis, with a 30% and 10% chance, respectively.
      So what's to be done once your Pokémon have been Paralyzed? Since Heal Bell and Aromatherapy are usually not worth the move space, methods to actually remove the condition are scarce. However, if more than one Pokémon is paralyzed, and you have access to Trick Room, at least one of the side effects of paralysis could be turned into a boon, as a 75% decrease in speed means a nearly quadruple speed bonus in TR. Also, moves like Psycho Shift and Abilities like Synchronize can cause the opponent to keep your misery company. However, an ounce of prevention always helps, and if you see a T-wave coming, there's nothing like switching an immune Ground type in to be a “shock” absorber.
      Freeze: Not as cool as you think
      Chances are, after playing VGC for a while, it's inevitable that you will run into the cold embrace of the Freeze condition. Perhaps one of the most terrible conditions, frozen Pokémon have only a 20% chance of thawing on any given turn. And unlike Confusion and Sleep, there's no turn limit on how long you can be frozen. The bright side? All moves with a chance of causing Freeze only have a 10% rate of causing it. Not even the mighty Blizzard has a higher chance of causing Freeze...! But as the case is with all other luck-based occurrences, it's bound to happen sooner or later. So if you really do not want to remain a Popsicle, consider attacking your own Pokémon with a Fire move. Without fail that will thaw your 'mon without even the slightest trace of frostbite, getting it immediately back into the action. Furthermore, despair not if your Fire type gets frozen itself, since any move that involves being encased in fire with thaw the user. (Read: Flare Blitz.)  Once again, forethought will save frustration, as Sunny weather will prevent the Freeze condition from happening in the first place.
      Sleep: You snooze, you lose
      Sleep is one of those conditions that can be either a friend or an enemy. Lasting one to three turns, it was mercifully decided that a Pokémon could not sleep indefinitely. In fact, there is no bias toward any of the three lengths of sleep, so there's a perfect one out of three chance for each duration. However, absolutely no luck is involved with the move Rest, which always makes you sleep for two turns (provided you don't switch out and reset the counter). Also, the Effect Spore ability has a 10% chance of causing Sleep upon contact. Perhaps some of you have considered trying to use the Early Bird ability, but haven't been sure how much of a benefit it is. The answer: very. There is always a 33.3% chance of waking up immediately, and otherwise, the Pokémon will only sleep one short turn. But as with all conditions, it can be prevented from happening to begin with. One way is to effectively predict around the common Spore users (Amoongus, Parasect, Breloom, and Smeargle) until you can KO them, another is to hold a Chesto or Lum Berry, and finally the Insomnia and Vital Spirit abilities always prevent it.
      Confusion: Such a terrible thing
      The other status effect that has a finite length, Confusion lasts longer than sleep, clocking it at two to five turns. The logical explanation of this effect is that each turn there is “only” a 50% of confusion taking effect, damaging the Pokémon and robbing it of an attack. With the exception of Swagger, Flatter, and Confuse Ray, however, no move has more than a 30% chance of confusing the target. Take note, though, since the rain-loving Hurricane has the full 30% of sending your 'mon to the insane asylum.
      The coin-flip involved in the confusion status effect sparks an interesting and never-ending debate: Switch out to remove the condition, endangering the incoming Pokémon, or test your luck, and hope for a solid hit? The answer is largely situational. If there is something significant to gain by taking the chance on that very turn, it could very well be worth it. But if the Pokémon that needs to switch in doesn't stand a chance to live through the switch, and is vital for a later purpose, it would probably be better to take the chance. Sometimes you may have no choice. Hence, that bittersweet term, “luck.”
      Seeing as how Infatuation also has the same chance of taking effect as Confusion, and because it is rarely seen competitively, it shall be treated in this section. With a 50% chance of immobilizing the opponent,  in reality only about half your Pokémon could ever suffer Infatuation since it only works on Pokémon of the opposite gender. On top of it, there are only two ways to do so: First, through the move Attract, which always causes it (if the gender conditions are met), and second, through the Cute Charm ability, which has a 30% chance of taking effect. You be the judge!
      Burn: Too hot to handle
      The final status effect that shall be covered in this article is that of the ever-present Burn. Causing a bit of damage every turn, and mercilessly slicing the Attack stat in half, nobody wants to get burnt. And that's just what Will-o-Wisp and Inferno do without fail, provided they hit. To put salt in the wound, other moves can get as high as a 30% chance of burning the opponent, such as Scald.  Additionally, the Flame Body ability, common on such standard Pokémon as Volcarona and even Chandelure, can be a threat to any of your mons that touch the foe, particularly since it shares the 30% effect rate.  Be aware that Fire types cannot be burned, and ones with the Flash Fire ability will even boost the power of fire moves should they be hit with Fire. Scald definitely is the odd man out, however, being a Water move. Just by packing a Lum Berry, however, you can exploit the virtual panacea for all your status-problem needs.
      Effect Spore:  Don't mess with the 'shrooms!
      Finally, a few words are in order for the Ability which has already been mentioned twice in this article: Effect Spore.
      The Effect Spore ability has a 30% chance of causing one of three special conditions: Poison, Paralyze, and Sleep, with 10% allocated to each. While this may sound terrifying, there are a couple of scenarios to consider.  First, direct contact with the spore-er in question is necessary for the ability to take effect.  Second, 10% of that chance is expended on a competitively weak condition, Poison. Last, the ability could cause major headaches if it is being abused within a TR team, as it could paralyze the foe and bring it down to a speed that thrives in TR.
      While it was just stated that regular Poison is somewhat useless, it still is necessary to state that there is one more odd chance of contracting it: Poison Point.  The ability is on few common Pokémon, but when it's there, be wary of its 30% effect rate.
      Flinches, Criticals, and Accuracy/Evasion Stat Levels
      Now that the most controllable and abused randomizers have been covered, it's time to take a look at the less controllable (and hence more infuriating) events. Just what are these? Flinches, critical hits, and the pairing of accuracy and evasion levels.
      Flinches: Just when you thought you were focused...
      That dreadful moment when your Pokémon flinches and misses out on that match deciding Close Combat: that is what makes flinches so dangerous. Of course, everyone knows that flinches can be controlled with the move Fake Out, but after that, there's a bigger chance of being made to flinch than most people realize. Many competitively viable moves such as Air Slash, Rock Slide, Icicle Crash and Iron Head and have a whopping 30% of causing a flinch. Additionally, their close cousins Dark Pulse, Waterfall and Zen Headbutt still have a 20% of causing a flinch. So, those numbers could be much worse. Consider this: many teams have two Pokémon who can use Rock Slide. If both of them use it at the same time, each of your Pokémon has a 51% chance of flinching. What can be done, then? Well, there are two approaches: if you are faster than the potential cause of a flinch, there's no problem, since a flinch only works before you've made your attack. Second, the ability Inner Focus makes your Pokémon immune to flinching, even from Fake Out, making it a valuable tool in the current metagame. On a side note, the item King's Rock often garners questions about whether it increases the chance of a flinch enough to make it worthwhile. The answer is this: it adds a 10% chance of flinching, but only when using damaging moves without any secondary effects (paralysis, stat boosts). While this is nothing amazing, a Pokemon with the Skill Link Ability can use five-strike moves with a combined 41% chance of causing the foe to flinch. Additionally, most of the moves with a 30% chance of flinching so not have any secondary effects, so this formidable sounding item can increase that chance to 40%.
      Critical Hits: It's a head-shot!!
      The greatest match-flippers in the whole game: the dreaded Critical Hits. Not only do they double the damage normally dealt (or triple it, as is the case with the Ability Sniper), but they ignore all negative stat changes on the Pokémon that scores the hit, and all defense boosts on the target. That's right; your Latios at -4 Sp. Atk can hit with Draco Meteor at double-full force if he scores a critical. So what is the chance of these minitaure catastrophes happening? The regular chance is 1/16, or 6.25%. However, a wide variety of moves that double this chance, including Stone Edge, Leaf Blade, Psycho Cut, Drill Run, Cross Chop, Cross Poison and Slash, bringing the chance up to 12.5%. Two items that further boost this ratio are Razor Claw and Scope Lens, bringing the regular chances up to 12.5% and 25%, respectively. Hence, it would appear that 25% is the highest it could go, right? In practice, yes, but it can indeed get higher: Focus Energy raises the critical hit ratio one more point higher, bringing that 25% up to 33.3%. The upside of this is that the metagame is so fast-paced that it would not be worth the effort to devote an extra turn to raising the critical rate that high. But there is one last factor: the Super Luck Ability, held only by Togekiss, Honchkrow, Absol, and Unfezant, which doubles the current critical “stat-stage.” That means that Unfezant's Air Cutter has a base 33.3% chance of scoring a critical hit....! Add in a Scope Lens, and it reaches the highest level: 50%. Only two moves will ever get critical hits every time: Storm Throw and Frost Breath, both of which are on Pokémon who don't have much use for the move. While criticals in and of themselves may not be the worst thing out there, they certainly have a huge impact on matches, often KO-ing something that would usually survive. On top of that, there are only two ways to avoid critical hits: the Ability Battle Armor, and the move Lucky Chant. While these may sound useful, most of the Pokémon who get them either have a better ability at their disposal, or are virtually wasting a move slot just for peace-of-mind. The bottom line: don't rage if a critical or two happens in a battle. Statistically speaking, there are four Pokémon attacking each turn with a 1/16 chance of getting a critical hit; hence one could easily happen every four turns.
      Accuracy and Evasion:  Missed it by *that* much
      Accuracy is a fact of Pokémon.  Every attack has an accuracy rating between 30 and 100, naturally standing for percentages.  Simple, right?  Of course! Er... until you find out that accuracy can be affected by stat stages both of evasion and accuracy itself.  Furthermore, various items and Abilities can affect these stats as well.  Now, to make a more accurate explanation of these factors...
      Stat stages for Accuracy and Evasion are complicated.  More so than regular stat changes.   The biggest reason for this is because most people are not aware how Pokémon's accuracy is being calculated.  The answer is that Accuracy multiplies your move's base accuracy, while Evasion divides it.  So, if the foe has six stages of evasion, divide your accuracy by three, and if you have six stages of Accuracy, multiply your accuracy by three.  To put it in a formula:  (Move Accuracy) × (Accuracy stat) ÷ (foe's Evasion stat).  For example, if you are using the 90% accurate Draco Meteor with 1.66x Accuracy against a Blissey at four stages of Evasion, Draco Meteor will have a virtual accuracy of about 64%.   Now for the percentages themselves, which are the same for Accuracy and Evasion:

      Negative Stages |       Positive Stages
      -6 = Accuracy x 0.33|       6 = Accuracy x 3
      -5 = x .375|       5 = x 2.66
      -4 = x 0.428 |       4 = x 2.33
      -3 = x 0.5 |       3 = x 2
      -2 = x 0.6 |       2 = x 1.66
      -1 = x 0.75 |       1 = x 1.33So now that the values associated with accuracy and evasion have been fully explained, the various items and Abilities which automatically affect these entities can be easily illustrated.  The most common Evasion raising Abilities are Sand Veil and Snow Cloak, which activate in Sandstorm and Hail weather respectively, and each boosts the Pokémon's evasion by one stage.  In other words, that Garchomp in the sand will only have a 75% chance of being hit... pretty big in this fast-paced game.  On the contrary, the CompoundEyes Ability raises your own Pokémon's accuracy by 30%, explaining how Galvantula's Thunder hits about as often as Draco Meteor despite the move's base 70 Accuracy.  As far as items go, BrightPowder raises Evasion by 10%, while Lax Incense raises it a measly 5%.  (Who uses it, anyway?)  Accuracy-boosting items include Wide Lens, Zoom Lens, and Micle Berry.  Wide Lens increases accuracy by 10% of the base accuracy of a move, while Zoom Lens increases it by 20%... but only if the Pokémon moves last.  Micle Berry is not much more viable than Zoom Lens, since it activates only when your Pokémon is down and in the red.  The upside is that it increases the next move's Accuracy by 20%, so at least your last attack is more unlikely to miss!
      Serene Grace:  Blithely causing ragequits
      Serene Grace is a peculiar Ability that deserves its very own section, considering that it doubles the chance of any added effect a move might cause.  Air Slash and Rock Slide, while they only have a 30% chance of causing a flinch, take a huge leap up to 60% in the hands of Togekiss, Blissey and Dunsparce, making for quite the threat.  Furthermore, attacks like Blizzard that only have a 10% chance of causing the Frozen condition now have a 20% chance of crystallizing your best attacker...!  Take it from me, when Serene Grace is around, your state of mind will more than likely be anything BUT serene.
      Random Move Effects and Damage Randomization
      Now for the final elements of chance in Pokémon battles:  those that occur in the moves themselves, the random factor applied to damage from attacks, and speed ties.  While easily overlooked, these are the factors that usually make or break the outcome of the battle. Will Bullet Seed hit two times or five times?  Will your Hitmontop or his Hitmontop go first?  And is that Dark Pulse going to do 48% or 50% damage, determining whether or not that Jellicent is KO'd?  Read on for the answers.
      Moves with extra effects:  So NOW you fear my Metagross
      The first category of attacks that randomly help the player are those that occasionally boost one (or more) of the user's stats.  Examples include Meteor Mash, which has a 20% chance of raising the user's Attack one stage, Steel Wing, which has a 10% chance of raising the Pokémon's Defense one stage, and Charge Beam, which has a whopping 70% chance of raising the user's Special Attack one stage (and face it, the move is so weak it NEEDS that boost).  Also worth a mention are AncientPower, Silver Wind and Ominous Wind, which all have a 10% chance of raising every stat one stage, except Accuracy and Evasion.  It bears noting, however, that none of these moves should be relied on for strategies, since most offer only a 10-20% chance of taking effect, and the ones that offer more usually are too weak to be worth the set up.  In other words, gloat over the boosts if you like, but do not expect them when you most need them.
      Next are the multi-strike moves!  Who said that hitting the foe once per turn is enough?  Jokes aside, these moves hit 2-5 times when you attack (unless you OHKO, of course).  However, the odds are stacked in favor of hitting only two or three times, since there is only a combined 25% chance of hitting four or five times.  For the cold, calculated odds:  37.5% chance each of hitting two or three times, and a 12.5% chance each for hitting four or five times.  So if you plan on using Bullet Seed, Icicle Spear, Rock Blast, Bone Rush, or any of the other multi-strike moves, it stands to reason that you should try managing your EVs to allow for a KO of intended targets with only two or three strikes.  On the other hand, Cloyster and Cinccino both have Skill Link, allowing the moves to always hit 5 times... (Oh, woe to those who cross a Skill Link Pokémon!)
      Finally, there are the attacks with a random chance of dropping one of the foe's stats.  Not only do these lucky breaks generally make the foes more vulnerable in the following turns, they sometimes can be so devastating that they force a switch!  One move that causes this is Crunch, with a 20% chance of lowering Defense one stage.  Furthermore, Bug Buzz, Psychic, Energy Ball and Earth Power all have a 10% chance of lowering Special Defense one stage, while Shadow Ball has a 20% chance of doing the same thing.  So just as with the moves that might boost your stats, these moves that lower stats are no more reliable, and ought to be merely welcomed as offering an added sting to your foe's wounds.
      The random damage multiplier:  Lamenting a Pokémon's inconsistent strength
      Once you've played Pokémon for a while, it is almost impossible to notice that there is a slight variation in how much damage an attack deals each time, even though your Pokémon and the foe's remain unchanged.  The reason is simple:  Game Freak decided that random parahax and unbelievably badly timed 10% chances of Freeze did not make battles random enough, so they made move damage random too.  Without expounding on the whole, mildly complicated damage formula, I'll reduce it to this:  every attack's damage will be multiplied by a random number between 0.85 and 1.  Consequently, it is proven that your Pokémon is occasionally responsible for a loss because it didn't give its all!  Not really.  Regardless, this should be considered when developing EV spreads, just as Jio has mentioned in his article on EV spreads.  While calculating spreads, always assume every attack will be at it's weakest, and EV accordingly.  Alternatively, find a percentage of a certain damage threshold that you are comfortable with.  It can't hurt to cross your fingers while attacking a Pokémon, either.
      Speed Ties:  Heads, I win; Tails, please miss
      Last, but not least, there is the issue of Speed Ties.  With so many Pokémon out there who share speed tiers with others, it's bound to happen sooner or later that two Pokémon have the exact same speed stat.  In the event of this tie, Pokémon does what every other rational being does when a decision needs to be made without bias: it flips a coin.  You read that correctly, in the event of a speed tie, there is a 50% chance of your Pokémon going before the opponent, and vice-versa.  The most unfortunate part is that on certain teams, particularly Trick Room teams and teams with Swift Swimmers or Sand Rushers, this event is nearly unavoidable.  While not much can be done to prevent them, it still is wise to have a plan for when they do inevitably happen.
      Conclusion
      Whether you wish to know this information in order to better weigh the risks, or else if you want to maximize the odds of “hax”, the same way Manoj Sunny (MangoSol) did in his 2012 Worlds team as well as others before him, arming yourself with a thorough knowledge of probability of in-battle effects will surely lead to a greater understanding of the game, and hopefully the development of a better playstyle.
    • PPRNGing Fourth Gen Pokemon
      By Tapin
      There's a distinct lack of documentation surrounding the PPRNG fourth generation functionality; there's a lot in there, but it requires a distinct knowledge set just to crack it open.  I'm going to try to lessen that documentation gap.
      I don't claim any special knowledge of the domain, and will gladly take corrections; this is mostly just my working notes while I spent a weekend figuring out Gen 4 RNG, after having been pretty comfortable with Gen 5.  As an aside: If you can, and you haven't yet, I would recommend learning the basics of RNGing with a copy of Pokemon Black or Pokemon White, preferably while using a DS Phat or Lite.  That's effectively "easy mode".  I'll frequently be referring to differences between Gen 5 (Black, White, etc) and Gen 4 (Diamond/Pearl/Platinum, HeartGold/SoulSilver), so it will be useful to understand Gen 5 RNGing before trying to follow this.
       
      ZomgTimer
      The first thing that you'll find is that you're going to want a timer.  In theory it's possible to do all of this without a timer, but to save yourself the hassle you'll want to go download ZomgTimer right now.
      In Gen 5, there's a lot of work done calibrating your DS and cart, but each individual cycle is just a matter of starting the game on the right second and praying that you hit the right timer0.  In contrast, Gen 4 has very little calibration work necessary, but you need to both a ) launch the game at the right time (with a window of less than one second) and b ) spend exactly the right amount of time between game-launch and loading your save file.  This is where ZomgTimer comes in: it will take care of running both timers back-to-back.
      The gentleman who wrote ZomgTimer has since moved on to EonTimer, which has a number of bells and whistles (and a pretty UI) that ZomgTimer lacks.  However, ZomgTimer has one key feature for Mac users that EonTimer doesn't: It's a Java program, and will therefore run on our Macs.  Zomg 1, Eon 0.
      Before you do anything else, let's get a feel for how Zomg works.  Launch the app (double-click the jar file).  The first thing we're going to do is a trial run.  Switch to the Gen 4 timer (Mode > Gen 4), and you'll see a window like the following, which is my actual ZomgTimer after a few successful stationary-Pokemon projects in Diamond:

      Let's dissect this a bit:

      "Calibrated Delay" is related to the amount of time between game launch and savefile load.  A good place to start this is around 600.
      "Target Delay" is a value that you'll fill in from PPRNG.  For now, set it to 800 -- at this point, the value is literally meaningless, except that you'll frequently be filling in a value between 600 and 1000.  We're just figuring out Zomg right now
      "Calibrated Sec", along with "Calibrated Delay", is attempting to account for the game-load time.  Set it to 14 and forget about it.
      "Target Second" is pretty much completely your own choice.  There's some more discussion of it below (in the discussion of the PPRNG Adjacent Time tab), but for now just set it to 35.
      "Minutes Before Target" will likely be 0.  For some of the more obscure seed targets, your delays will get longer and longer -- and this value may become non-zero.  If it does, you'll have to set your DS time with this value in mind: If PPRNG tells you that you're trying to hit 17:32:35, and after filling in your Target Delay the Minutes Before Target is a 2, then you'll want to set your DS clock to 17:30.  Easy.
      "Beeps" is how many times Zomg will beep before the final beep -- that is, Zomg will beep this many times plus one.  I typically decrease this to 4 (Tweak > Sounds > Decrease Number) because five total beeps is easy for my musician's brain to track (count off and go).
      "Frequency" is how often the beeps will occur.  I've never had a reason to modify this value, but if you want to, it's in the Tweak menu.
      The empty input box is where you'll put your actual delays once you start calibrating Zomg based on your first target.  The "Update" button is the submit button for the empty input box.  We'll come back to this.
      "Second Length", at the top of the lower section here, should be interpreted as "Length of Timer #2" -- NOT some obscure modification of the length of 1/60th of a minute.  Both it and the big-number timer here (in the picture above, the 17:68) are entirely based off of the four input boxes above, and as you'll notice they add up to roughly the "Target Seconds".

      If you hit start with values similar to those in the screen shot above, you'll see that the big number counts down to zero with beeps starting at 2.5 seconds; and then immediately another timer starts and runs about seventeen more seconds, beeping as it approaches zero.  Here's how you're going to actually use ZomgTimer:

      PPRNG will give you a target time (and date) and delay (we'll get to that).
      Plug in the target delay and the target time's seconds into Zomg.
      On your DS, set the date to the date PPRNG wants
      Still on your DS, set the hours and minutes to the target time PPRNG gave you.
      SIMULTANEOUSLY hit "A" on your DS and "Start" on Zomg.  Zomg will now be running
      Quickly back out of the DS settings window (and turn back on the console if you're using a DS Phat/Lite) and get ready to launch your game
      At the same time the last beep sounds for the first timer, launch your game (press "A")
      Quickly navigate the copyright screen and the title screen to get to the savefile screen, as Zomg's second timer is running
      At the same time the last beep sounds for the second timer, load your savefile (press "A")
      Now you need to verify that you hit your seed, or (optionally) adjust your calibration and try again.  But for that, we're going to need to talk about PPRNG for a while.

       
      PPRNG
      PPRNG is an amazing tool, and I really enjoy using it for Gen 5 RNGing.  Unfortunately, the Gen 4 RNG features assume you already know what you're doing, and so -- quite frankly -- it's actually easier to learn the basics of Gen 4 RNGing by using other tools.  However, once you've got it sussed, PPRNG gives you pretty much everything you need; it's my goal to get you to that point without having to go run RNG Reporter on an Amazon EC2 instance of Windows Server 2008 for four hours like I did.
      Once again, I'm going to assume you've used PPRNG for Gen 5 RNGing already.  If you haven't, you'll likely want to read someone else's guide, sorry.
      The first thing you'll want to do is to go to Generation 4 Game Config.  Create a new configuration, and tell it what game you're using.  That's it, you're configured.  Well, you can fill in your trainer ID (TID) and secret ID (SID) for Shiny-searches if you want -- I suggest using PokeCheck, but if you've been doing Gen 5 RNGing then you probably already know how to do this -- but unless you've RNG'd your TID/SID already then you're going to have a hard time finding Shiny spreads anyway, and if you did RNG your TID/SID, then you're probably not reading this.
      The reason there's so little configuration here compared to Gen 5 is because there are a lot less seeds (and therefore a lot less spreads) actually available in Gen 4.  Each valid seed comes up fairly regularly, but you might find it easier to adjust your mindset: In Gen 5, saying "I want a Brave Physical Trick Room Flawless" is just a matter of letting PPRNG run for a while; in Gen 4, most of your searches will finish near-instantaneously, and many of them will have zero results.
      Open up the Generation 4 Seed Searcher, let's play around a bit.

      For starters, let's look for a decent stationary Pokemon.  Dialga is just about the first stationary you can encounter in Diamond, so let's work on it.  How about a Quiet Special Flawless spread?  Set the IV Pattern and Nature, and hit "Search"

      D'oh.  No results, but at least we got the bad news pretty quickly.  But we can look a bit deeper -- the Search Ranges can be adjusted to help us out.  "Frame" is the PID Frame, and while Chatot chatters will advance the frame by 1 just like in Gen 5, you can also go twice as fast with the Journal in Diamond and Pearl: Viewing a Journal page that mentions catching a Pokemon will advance it by 2 each time.  So let's bump that number up a little -- to, say, 1000.  Also, the Delay we're working with is related to the Target Delay in ZomgTimer -- and if we're willing to wait a bit, we can up that as well. I've had bad luck with delays under 650, so I'm going to set the delay to "650 ~ 99999".
      (As an aside, many times I'll try for something that I know has very few results, but based on the breadth of my search PPRNG will refuse to run the query.  I wish there were some way to override the Professor Oak Warning so I can do, eg, Shiny searches over a custom IV pattern with a huge Frame and Delay window)
      In any case: After making the changes to our search ranges, we have some results:

      Success!  But… those delays are gigantic  Since "delay" is related to how long we'll be waiting for Zomg to beep, we'd prefer to have smaller ones if possible.  It turns out that PPRNG seems to pick the largest possible delay for a given seed (in the provided window), so frequently after you've found one seed you can shrink your delay window and find a more reasonable alternative.
      In this case, shrinking the delay to, say, 5000 will give us much more reasonable alternatives -- and more options, to boot.  I'll be honest: I'm not sure why more show up at 5000 than 99999.  Shrinking it further to 1000 gives us the following:

      Now we're talking.  We need to pick one of these to attempt.  What's the difference?  Well, the obvious difference to a Gen 5 RNGer is that one has a Frame of 237 and the other 563.  But… what are these other columns?  J?  J (Sync)?  J (Sync Fail)?
      The short version is: "Method J" is what we're going to want for most stationary Pokemon, including Dialga.
      The longer version: "Method 1" is the standard way of computing seeds for Gen 4 carts; there are a number of slight modifications (don't ask me for details, I don't know them) that give rise to a number of other algorithms under certain circumstances.  Stationary Pokemon is one such modified algorithm, and someone chose to give that algorithm the name "Method J".  I'm not sure who or why, but the tenacious decompiling wizards who figured this all out have nothing but my utmost respect.
      I haven't tried it myself, but I'm assuming that "J (Sync)" is for when using a Synchronizer as your party lead, and "J (Sync Fail)" is for when you're using a Synchronizer but don't want the Synchronizer's nature (which seems kinda odd to me, but it does open up alternate frames on occasion).
      In this case, however, since we want a Method J Pokemon, Dialga, we can't use the first seed (it lists "None" under the J column) and therefore we're going to go after seed 540E02CF, the second row.  Double-click on it to open the Seed Inspector and continue.

      Hooray, there's our Pokemon -- but wait.  Frame Type, at the top of the tab, is set to "Method 1", which we just got done talking about.  Change it to "Stationary Encounter" and click "Generate".  You'll then have to scroll down to the frame we saw in the Seed Searcher window to find the spread we're looking for:

      Okay, so we see what we're looking for.  Quiet 31/11/31/31/31/31.  Now we need to start trying to hit our seed.  Switch over to the "Time / Adjacents" window:

      I like to set the year to 2011, but you're welcome to pick any year.  Some of the more detailed guides for Gen 4 RNGing have a discussion of how the year you pick impacts the delay you're trying to hit, so it's worth checking them out at some point.  I've also made a habit of changing the "Second" to 35 -- if you hit "Calculate Times", you'll see that this is how PPRNG (and every other Gen 4 RNGer I've seen) filters down the many, many possible times for the seed.
      After making those changes and hitting "Calculate Times", you'll see that the first listbox has been filled out:

      You'll notice that there are actually two "Delays" listed on this window: One next to the Seed, labelled "Base Delay", and another next to the Year, called "Actual Delay".  For Zomg, we want the "Actual Delay" (slotted as Target Delay).  So fill out the Target Delay and Target Seconds in Zomg:

      Assuming your game is saved one step shy of the encounter with Dialga -- or any other stationary Pokemon -- we can now follow the steps at the end of the ZomgTimer section above, starting with setting the DS date and time (2011/01/01 at 14:48, per PPRNG's listbox).
      Once you get into the game, there's a handy way in Diamond and Pearl to check exactly what seed you actually hit, without advancing your frame: The Coin Flip app in the Poketch.  The bottom of the "Time / Adjustments" tab in PPRNG will give us a list of all the seeds surrounding our target delay and the coin flips that will result from that seed.   Let's see what it can do.
      Since we're using ZomgTimer, we can be pretty sure we hit the right second; so set the "Second +/-" to zero.  However, since we haven't yet really calibrated Zomg at all, we could be anywhere (within reason) within the right second -- so set the "Delay +/-" to something largeish, like 100.  The "Match Parity" checkbox will limit your results to all-even or all-odd delays, which is potentially useful once you know which delay your game is hitting -- if you get even delays, you'll pretty much always get even delays, and vice versa -- but since we're not sure where we are yet we'll uncheck it.  Then hit "Generate":

      This should seem vaguely familiar to anyone who has calibrated a Black 2 or White 2 cartridge: Now we flip the coin ten times, with Magikarps counting as Heads and Pokeballs counting as Tails.  Ideally, we'd like to get the sequence at the top of the window, under the Seed: H, T, H, H, T, T, H, T, H, H.  But more likely, the sequence will end up like (eg) T, T, H, T, H, T, H, T, T, H -- which, when plugged in, reports a delay of 721:

      The good news is: our delay is reasonable close.  Go ahead and plug 721 into that empty box in Zomg and click "Update" there; it will change the calibrated delay slightly before our next run.
      The bad news is: we hit an odd delay, and we're trying to hit an even one.  The only way I've found to change a "parity mismatch" like this is to insert a GBA cartridge into the dual-slot of your DS before you launch the game next time.  One of the most useful and complete guides I read about Gen 4 RNGing suggested that you could add or subtract one to the target year (switching to 2010 or 2012, in this case), but what I've found is that while it did change my Actual Delay, it also seemed to change the delays that my DS was hitting -- so while Actual Delay became odd, my DS started hitting even delays.  As always, your mileage may vary.
      From here, it's pretty much like Gen 5.  Reset the DS, reset the time, run Zomg and try to hit your seed again.  Re-calibrate as necessary, but keep in mind that once you get fairly close (your delays are off by no more than 4), changing your calibration won't actually be much help.
      Once you've successfully hit your seed, the only thing left to do is frame advancement.  As I mentioned before, Chatot chatters work, as does flipping the Journal to a page that mentions catching a Pokemon (nb: most guides mention that you need to have a message of "Caught a POKEMON (TIME)", eg "Caught a STUNKY (DAY)", but I found that any mention at all -- eg, "Caught a MACHOP" -- caused the frame to advance).  In this case, we're starting on Frame 1, and we are trying to hit Frame 408 -- so we need to advance 407 frames, which is one Chatot chatter and 203 Journal flips.
      After that, it's all just a matter of catching the Pokemon and using your favorite IV calculator to verify that you hit your seed and frame.
      Good luck, Trainer!
    • Down to Earth: A Guide to Gravity
      By TKOWL
      Gravity: it's what keeps us rooted to the earth, what maintains balance on our world, and was one of Sir Issac Newton's most important discoveries. Too little of it, and we drift off into space; too much of it, and all life would be eradicated. In the Pokémon universe, things seem to maintain in a fairly well gravitational force (bar how some Pokémon can randomly float in the air) but there are some Pokémon who are able to bend gravity in odd and intense ways. Thus the move Gravity.
      Gravity Explained
      Like Sunny Day or Trick Room, Gravity lasts for five turns. It has neutral priority, which makes it a bit easier to set up. Once Gravity has intensified, all Pokémon that are Flying-types or with Levitate are pulled down, removing their Ground immunity. All Pokémon on the field have a two-stage drop in evasion (which is about a 1.66x boost in accuracy). Finally, certain moves such as Hi Jump Kick and Fly are unable to be used.
      The two former aspects of Gravity's effects are the main reason for its usefulness. Take, for example, the move Focus Blast: it has a high 120 base power, but is most infamously known for its 70% accuracy. However, under the effects of Gravity, the move will always hit bar some evasion shenangians! A predominant problem many players encounter is the dreaded 90% accuracy of moves such as Draco Meteor and Heat Wave, which seem to miss at the most inopportune times. Put Gravity onto the field and these moves suddenly gain 100% accuracy, allowing you to fire them off without fear! Not even the infamous BrightPowder Garchomp can stand in your way under the effects of Gravity! As you see, Gravity can act as a great backup force behind your Pokémon's moves, and is good for players who feel insecure about their Pokémon's actions.
      The second notable effect of Gravity, the grounding of all Pokémon with Levitiate and Flying-types, can also be a great help. Zapdos, Rotom-W, and other Pokémon like them rely on their Ground-type immunity to rid themselves of a major weakness -- but what if that immunity was taken away? When Gravity strikes, all things, including the once-mighty Zapdos, are subject to Earthquake, Earth Power, and other Ground-type moves. Unfortunately, this means that proper preparation is required on your side because the Earthquake user's partner is completely vulnerable to the move as well. Gravity is also interesting as it automatically gets rid of Air Balloon's effect, instantly wasting away an item for the balloon's holder.
      Notable Users

      Sableye
      The introduction of the Gravity move tutor in Black & White 2 gave Sableye an incredible and exclusive combination: Prankster Gravity. This allows Sableye to set the effect up with +1 priority, which is a huge advantage over its counterparts. Gravity also alleviates one of Sableye's huge issues: the 75% accuracy with Will-o-Wisp. After Gravity goes into effect, Will-o-Wisp will just about always hit, turning Sableye into a lean, mean, burning machine. It also helps that Sableye isn't truly weak to any move. Unfortunately, the little prankster's defenses are still abysmal, even with priority Recover, and its offense is non-existent so Sableye can sometimes become dead weight after burning its foes. However, as a Gravity user, Sableye excels, and should always be considered when wanting to utilize its effects.

      Musharna
      Musharna is a Pokémon you should not judge at face value. Musharna, at first, seems like an obsolete Cresselia clone with more invested in special attack and less in defenses. However, in terms of a Gravity user, Musharna is a more viable option than Cresselia. Unlike Cresselia, whose ability goes to waste once Gravity goes into effect, Musharna's Telepathy makes it a great partner for Earthquake users. Musharna's movepool is nearly identical to Cresselia with options including Icy Wind, Trick Room, Helping Hand, and more. Overall, if you plan on abusing Gravity (which I assume you are since you are still reading this), Musharna is one of the best options.

      Chansey / Blissey
      In a metagame so overrun by special attackers, Chansey and Blissey can be some of the most helpful Pokémon to have around -- and both were blessed with Gravity in their movepools! Due to Chansey and Blissey's absurd defenses, they're almost guaranteed to set up Gravity. However, Chansey and Blissey have some notable differences: while Chansey is known for its absolutely insane bulk with Eviolite and pathetic attacking stats, Blissey trades a bit of that defensive power for a pretty decent 75 special attack stat and freedom of items. Blissey can also abuse its other ability better: Serene Grace. With a wide movepool, Blissey now has access to 100%% accurate Blizzards with a 20% chance to freeze, Fire Blasts with 20% chance of a burn, Thunders with a 60% chance of paralysis, Rock Slides with a 60% chance of flinch on each opposing Pokémon, and more. Another interesting thing to do with Blissey, as noticed in Huy's NuggetBridge Major analysis, is to abuse Skill Swap with its partners, giving them Serene Grace, opening up a myriad of options. Just watch your opponent's face when Tyranitar's Rock Slide gains its 60% flinch chance!

      Dusclops
      Dusclops is much like a much bulkier Sableye, except without the exceptional ability. With Eviolite, Dusclops is nigh impossible to OHKO regularly making it a fantastic Pokémon to set up Gravity. However, unlike Sableye, Dusclops also has access to Trick Room, which it can set up before Gravity or even in lieu of gravity depending on the situation. Dusclops also shares one of Sableye's perks under Gravity with a near-perfectly accurate Will-o-Wisp, increasing its defenses even more against threats like Tyranitar.

      Ferrothorn
      Ferrothorn is undoubtedly the best user of both Power Whip and Leech Seed, but these moves carry an unfortunate 85 and 90% accuracy respectively, which have cost many games in my time when they miss. However, Ferrothorn has access to Gravity in its miriad of support options, alleviating the accuracy problem completely. Ferrothorn is yet another Pokémon that works well under Trick Room, often times being the first one to moved under these reversed speed conditions. However, it must watch for its life against the extraordinarily plentiful Fire and Fighting-type moves, so good team support is needed. A popular way to partially alleviate Ferrothorn's combustibility is rain, making him a good choice for such a team.
      Notable Gravity Abusers

      Landorus and Landorus-T
      It seems obvious that Landorus and Landorus-T would be one of the first Pokémon to get mentioned as Gravity abusers, as Earthquake is practically their signature move (or if you are using special Landorus-I, Earth Power). Once Gravity is in effect, just about nothing can stand in the way of terrifically powerful STAB Earthquakes. However, Landorus has an interesting perk in being able to use Gravity itself. Although not quite as bulky as the Gravity users mentioned above, Landorus still has respectable 89 / 90 / 80 defenses, and Landorus-T has bonus Defense with Intimidate. Both also can get up Gravity fairly quickly, with 101 and 91 speed respectively. Although Landorus is better at taking advantage of Gravity than setting it up, he fits the latter role fairly well.

      Metagross
      Meteor Mash is often been dubbed "Meteor Miss" by competitive players due to its rather unfortunate 85% accuracy and Zen Headbutt's 90% accuracy can be a pain as well. However stick Metagross under Gravity and all those accuracy problems are gone. Everyone on the field will also be weak to Earthquake, giving Metagross some great coverage.

      Heracross
      Heracross is one of my personal favorite Pokémon to use. With two fantastic STAB attacks along with a sky-high 125 attack stat and two great abilities in Guts and Moxie, it can really do some damage. The big things really holding it back is a rather average speed stat, the abundance of Intimidate, some critical weaknesses, and Megahorn and Stone Edge's undesirable accuracy. The three former can be worked around with some proper team building and prediction, but the latter can be completely fixed with Gravity. Under Gravity, all of Heracross' moves become completely accurate, striking fear in many foes due to their incredible coverage. Heracross' weakness to Intimidate can also be worked around with both Guts and Moxie: Flame Orb will mostly negate the attack drop, and getting a KO for Moxie will boost Heracross' attack back to normal. All said, Heracross is definitely a Pokémon you should consider for Gravity.

      Roserade
      Although Roserade will never be quite as popular as other, bulkier Grass-types like Amoonguss and Virizion, that does not mean it underperforms in any way. Outside of Chlorophyll users like Lilligant and Venusaur, Roserade has the fastest Sleep Powder in the game, and under Gravity it will be even more accurate than Spore! Outside of Sleep Powder, Roserade has some fairly good attack options for its base 125 special attack: STAB super-effective Leaf Storm hits extremely hard, Hidden Power Fire/Ice can round out its coverage, and Sludge Bomb is a fine secondary STAB attack if you don't want to suffer the special attack drop. However, playing with Roserade requires careful play: despite high special defense, Roserade still has miserable defenses and 90 base speed might need Tailwind or Icy Wind support against faster opponents. Its typing also makes it weak to the ever common Cresselia. Play around these weaknesses, however, and Roserade could work for you.

      Durant
      Durant is a pretty unique little Pokémon: boasting 109 attack plus Hustle, it can be incredibly powerful, putting a large dent in many common Pokémon with X-Scissor, Iron Head, Superpower, Rock Slide, Stone Edge and more; the only drawback is the accuracy loss caused by Hustle. Gravity gets rid of this problem, allowing Durant to slam on its opponents without issue. Durant also boasts a great 109 speed, only really being outsped by Latios and Thundurus (although that is not as likely against the widely popular Calm variant). Durant's only big problem? Its pathetic defenses. Despite a good 108 defense stat, its HP and special defense really don't do it any good, and it just can't take hits like its older brother Scizor. Durant is still a fun Pokémon to use despite its frailty, and definitely benefits from Gravity a lot.

      Mamoswine
      Recently, I heard Zach and his friends talking about the Tornadus+Mamoswine strategy: Smack Down any Flying-types or levitating Pokémon with Tornadus and Earthquake everything with Mamoswine. However, Gravity can make this strategy one step simpler. Apply Gravity, and Mamoswine can guarantee Earthquake everything. This does mean the partner is prone to Earthquake damage, so again, Protect or Telepathy will be needed. This strategy isn't really limited to Mamoswine, as basically any Pokémon that can use Earthquake well such as Garchomp and Gliscor can do it as well. However, Mamoswine does have a niche amongst other Ground-types in that it can take Ice moves much better using Thick Fat and its dual typing.
      Conclusion
      As you've seen, Gravity has a wide amount of usages, and lends itself to many team archetypes. There are many more Pokémon than listed above that can benefit from Gravity, making its effects more than just a simple little gimmick. I suggest everyone play around with Gravity for a bit and see if it fits your playstyle and team type. You might be surprised!
      Article image created by The Knights of Wario Land for NuggetBridge. View more on his Tumblr, or visit his forum thread.
  • Blog Entries