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Old February 5th, 2013 (9:03 AM).
Miss Doronjo's Avatar
Miss Doronjo Miss Doronjo is offline
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    As you know, A Double Battle , also known as a 2-on-2 battle, is a Pokémon battle featuring up to four Pokémon actively participating at once, that debuted in the games in Generation III. In double battles, attacks that hit both opposing Pokemon are called spread attacks, and are only 75% of their usual base power. Spread attacks hit the teammate's Pokemon first, and then all of the opponent's Pokemon at the same time. The order of all Pokemon's moves is determined before the turn begins. Therefore, Tailwind, Trick Room, and weather changing moves will not affect the order of Pokemon the turn that the move is used. The only moves that do change the order of Pokemon the same turn that they are used are Quash and After You. Tailwind now lasts four turns; during three of them, Speed is doubled. As of Black and White, Fake Out, Follow Me, and Rage Powder have +3 priority. Wide Guard, Quick Guard, Detect, and Protect run on the same counter. Mental Herb now protects against the effects of infatuation, Taunt, Encore, Torment, Disable, and Cursed Body.

    What's the difference between the Single and Double Metagame?

    ~ Stall is virtually unusable in double battles, because of the fast-offensive paced nature of double battles.

    ~ Thus, some pokemon who are usable to be dedicated walls (eg. Blissey) are not that commonly used in double battles, except for few instances.

    ~ There is little / no entry hazards, again, due to the offensive nature of double battles.

    ~ Switching out is very risky in double battles - so people don't usually switch out pokemon as much as they did in single battles. That's because switching opens up the incoming Pokemon to up to two attacks.

    ~ Because of the offensive nature of Double battles, moves like spread moves and attacks with priority are much more common in double battles, mainly because of the constant increase of Speed caused by support moves.

    Common Moves

    According to Smogon, common moves that people have used are called spread moves. Spread moves are moves that hit both opposing Pokemon (and in some cases, your teammate as well). Hitting two Pokemon with one move means greater efficiency, since they're effectively 1.5 times as powerful as in singles, and have an increased chance to activate a secondary effect. For example, Rock Slide has a 51% chance to flinch one of the opposing Pokemon and Blizzard has a 19% chance to freeze an opposing Pokemon, disregarding accuracy. Spread moves add a degree of complexity to team building, making synergy an extremely crucial aspect. Support moves are also quite common in double battles, even on offensive teams. These types of moves are almost required in order to maintain control of the battle.

    Protect is arguably the best move in double battles. It can be used to scout for threatening moves, stop Fake Out, stall out Tailwind or Trick Room, and protect one Pokemon from a threat while taking it out with the other. Detect is similar to Protect, but is rarely affected by Imprison. Two new moves that have strange variations of Protect were introduced in Black and White: Quick Guard and Wide Guard. Quick Guard stops your Pokemon from being attacked by any moves with priority. This is a very useful move considering the high usage of priority attacks. Wide Guard prevents damage from all spread moves to both Pokemon on the turn that it is used, making it incredibly effective at stopping strategies that focus on wearing down the opponent with spread moves.

    Fake Out is a fantastic move that can stop the opponent's strategy for one turn, render a faster threat useless, and break a Focus Sash. However, Ghost-type Pokemon are immune to Fake Out and can easily carry out their strategy. Protect also stops Fake Out from becoming a problem. Feint is a way to break through Protect or Detect for one turn, but it is much less common than Fake Out.

    Tailwind and Trick Room change the order in which the Pokemon move. These moves are used to allow slower Pokemon to hit hard before getting hit, or double the speed of Pokemon with a mediocre Speed stat.

    Helping Hand is a support move that bulkier Pokemon tend to utilize. Boosting its partner's attacks by 50% for one turn, Helping Hand can compensate for the power drop of spread moves and turn a 2HKO into an OHKO. It also has an incredible +5 priority. Helping Hand fits into just about any strategy, making it all the more threatening.

    Follow Me or Rage Powder are useful moves that draw in the opponent's attacks to hit the user. Follow Me can be used to draw in a not very effective attack aimed at another Pokemon. It can also be used to set up a strategy, such as Trick Room, or a boosting move. These moves ease prediction and protect weaker Pokemon from strong single target attacks.

    Common Abilities

    Abilities in double battle are quite standard - they seek to aim for healing, stability, and eases prediction. For example, absorbing moves like Motor Drive, Dry Skin, Water Absorb, Volt Absorb, and Flash Fire give an immunity to a type as well as boosting a stat or replenishing HP. Lightningrod and Storm Drain do the same thing, but draw in those types of attacks to target the Pokemon with the ability. These abilities can discourage common spread moves such as Discharge or Heat Wave. Abilities that effect pokemon, like intimidate, is a great ability because it lowers both opposing Pokemon's Attack one stage before moves are chosen. thanks to that, Intimidate can change a crucial OHKO to a 2HKO.

    Weather abilities are also viable in double battles (Sandstream, Drought, Drizzle). Weather based teams have a huge advantage over most other strategies because of the sheer amount of things that weather can do. For example, Tyranitar's Sand Stream ability doubles Stoutland's Speed instantly (thanks to its ability, Sand Rush), gives Tyranitar and other Rock-types 1.5x Special Defense, and deals damage at the end of each turn all at once. Politoad's Drizzle can ensure that Hurricane from Dragonite or Thunder from Jolteon can always be 100% accurate, as it boosts water attacks as well. A drought from Nintetales gives Chlorophyll users a boost (such as Exeggutor or Venusaur), giving them free Solarbeam charges.

    Common Items

    Once again, due to the quick, offensive nature of double battles, single use items are usually preferred, as they are quick, and easy to play around.

    Focus Sash is used quite often in double battles due to the presence of so many strong attacks and spread moves. The chance of being OHKOed is much more likely, so frailer Pokemon tend to hold a Focus Sash. The lack of entry hazards in double battles rarely causes it to break. Focus Sash is useful for prediction as well. It can force the opponent to double target or rely on spread moves.

    Type resist berries are extremely popular. They are invaluable for surviving an attack from a specific threat. For example, Shuca Berry allows Metagross to survive an Earthquake and attack the same turn, without using a Focus Sash. On the other hand, type-boosting Gems boost a single attack for a one time use. Double battles are usually short enough that one boosted attack is enough to decide the outcome. Type-boosting Gems do not have the drawback of being locked in to one move, like Choice items do. They also make it difficult to switch out of a dangerous attack, as the Pokemon holding the Gem can just use another attack the following turn. Because of this, Gem-boosted moves are always a safe choice. Life Orb may be the superior item in some situations, but Item Clause prevents you from using more than one. Pokemon holding type boosting Gems can also use Protect to play defensively and attack when the time is right.

    Mental Herb allows the holder to instantly recover from many pseudo-status moves, the most important of which are Taunt and Encore. With a Mental Herb on a support Pokemon, non-attacking strategies such as Trick Room or Thunder Wave are practically guaranteed to work.

    In terms of recovery, Sitrus Berry is preferred over Leftovers because it immediately restores HP and can help the Pokemon holding the Berry survive multiple spread moves. Double battles rarely last long enough for Leftovers to be more beneficial than Sitrus Berry. Lum Berry is a handy item to prevent the untimely paralysis from Discharge or a rampant Parasect from putting everything to sleep.

    Example(s) of double battle strategies:

    If you guys have any stradegys, come post em' here and I can add them to here, in the OP.


    This is a strategy that I use, and is typically my favourite - Usually I'd have Hariyama to fake out strong attackers, or Taunt Users that would other wise threaten my Duscolops, and then, I'd have Dusclops use Trick Room, while Hariyama has it's Toxic Orb activated. Or Flame Orb; whatever. Dusclops can back Hairyama up with Helping hand, or cripple threads with Will-O-Wisp, while Hairyama goes on a spree with it's Guts ability.

    For the Discussion, consider this...

    Does the style of Double battles appeal to you just as much as Single Battles? More? Less? Why or why not? What strategy do you use for double battles? Any other thoughts?


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    Old March 30th, 2013 (8:25 PM). Edited March 30th, 2013 by dreyko.
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    dreyko dreyko is offline
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      Great and informative thread! =)

      I have to agree with you on weather being a big influence in double battles. I personally feel that stall tactics, to a degree, can work in your favor, especially toxi-stall. Protect is invaluable for scouting and if your in on the stall plan. It is also especially useful to help you rack up sand storm, burn, or poison damage in order to make the KO easier.

      Sitrus Berry vs Leftovers is interesting; i will have to look into it more. ( i've been using leftovers)

      briefly some things i have noticed while double battling:

      Fake Out is annoying to go up against, but i understand its usefulness.
      Status conditions can really turn the match in your favor.
      Gems are very very powerful.
      Taunt, if used right, is crippling.
      Priority moves can often mean the difference between a win and a loss.
      Ferrothorn is annoying.
      Rotom-W is a machine.
      Poison Heal =D

      The most effective tactic, i feel, is to get a burn off on their physical attacker ( Garchomp, i am talking to you).

      Also if you are playing weather vs weather, you need to maintain control of it. Often times i have seen my opponent let their Politoed/Ninetales get KOed, while my Tyranitar was still alive and well, and they just couldn't recover.

      EDIT: I came across some weird Speed Boost strategy a couple weeks ago where the would just go for the protect to ensure a Speed Boost. I just burned the physical attackers with my Rotom-W. lol it's like " yeah you're faster than me, but i just halved your attack bro". =)
      I may be bad, but i'm perfectly good at it.
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      Old June 5th, 2013 (7:40 AM).
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      Gonzo Gonzo is offline
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      Let me make some things straight:

      Originally Posted by Miss Doronjo View Post
      ~ There is little / no entry hazards, again, due to the offensive nature of double battles.
      There's no entry hazards because people switch out Pokemon less often. Also, the most common doubles playstyle is GBU/VGC one - 4 out of 6 vs 4 out of 6 and that restricts switches as losing 1/4 of the team compared to 1/6 is a huge difference. Any kind of setup that doesn't work instantly or next turn (Helping Hand, Tailwind, Thunder Wave, Snarl, Icy Wind) is risky because your setuper can be double targeted and taken out easily. Toxic is used much less often because Pokemon don't last long enough on the field to make Toxic really useful.

      Originally Posted by Miss Doronjo View Post
      ~ Because of the offensive nature of Double battles, moves like spread moves and attacks with priority are much more common in double battles, mainly because of the constant increase of Speed caused by support moves.
      Priority isn't that common. I played both singles and doubles and I find Singles to be packed with Priority. In doubles, you don't have to worry about Revenge Killing.

      Common Abilities

      Nodoby uses Motor Drive and Volt Absorb. Mostly because their users are frail in general. Water Absorb is common on Jellicent becauser it can threaten common rain teams.

      Drizzle + Swift Swim is not banned, jsyk. Also, as the metagame is really fast paced, Prankster users (Thundurus, Whimsicott, Sableye most notably) are used often, too.

      An extremely common ability is Intimidate, because it affects both opponents. Doubles meta is more bulk oriented, so a -1 Atk Physical Pokemon can do much less than in singles. I personally am a HUGE fan of Defiant ability - whenever your opponent lowers your stat(s), you get a +2Atk boost. So basically, when your opponent has Intimidate activating itself and you have a Defiant Pokemon in the field, you land at +1 instead of -1 and that's huge.

      Common Items

      Lots of Gems, resist berries, Sitrus, Lum. Much less Choice items and Life Orb, although the latter works well with Pokemon that take no recoil from it like Sheer Force Landorus or Magic Guard Reuniclus.

      The coolest thing is lack of Smogon's bans and restrictions. The only banned Pokemon are box cover legendaries (+ Mewtwo) and event only Pokemon (Mew, Phione, Victini, Keldeo, just to name a few). There's no Sleep Clause as well and guess what? That's easy to play around, seriously. There are just two clauses in effect: item clause and species clause.

      It races through narrow caves, using its sharp claws to catch prey. The skin on its face is harder than a rock.

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