Day, Night, and Dusk - Lycanroc for Smash Bros. Ultimate

Delzethin

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After all this time, all the questions, all the doubt, it looks like we really are getting that League finals showdown we've been hoping for.

Crazy to think we called it nearly two years ago, eh?

Spirit boards for a preexisting franchise in Smash could be centered around a certain theme. For example, a Pokemon coming with trainer, Ultra Beast, or Gen 8 spirits. Granted, the first and last ones would be better for a Pokemon Masters or Gen 8 fighter.
That's exactly how I think they'd handle a spirit board from an already-present franchise. If the newcomer in question is from a new setting, the board could pull from the new characters in the setting. If the newcomer is from an older setting or the series has a recurring setting, there're other themes that could be done based on what the current spirit list doesn't cover, like my one idea for an Ultra Beast-themed board to tie in with an Ultra Space stage.
 

Cosmic77

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Well, there's some promising news about Ash and the league. His Meltan is summoning the rest of the Meltan to presumably form Melmetal, a Pokemon that's immune to poison. His next rival is supposed to be Guzma, whose star Pokemon is Golisopod.

See where I'm going with this?
 
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LukeRNG

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Regarding spirits, would pokemon get spirits based on the human characters? I know a reason may have been because of not getting to use ken sugimori art, hence why they used dream world art for the pokemon spirts.

But is there any alternative artwork of the trainers that could be used instead?
 
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Delzethin

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Well, what have we here?


Looks like we're getting more news on Sword & Shield in two days' time. What's everyone hoping to see from this batch, aside from a Lycanroc sighting?
 

Cosmic77

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Well, what have we here?


Looks like we're getting more news on Sword & Shield in two days' time. What's everyone hoping to see from this batch, aside from a Lycanroc sighting?
Just more info on the new Pokemon I guess. We're getting close to release and we still only know 15 of the Gen VIII Pokemon.

Wouldn't mind a tour of a few towns either. Those are usually the most detailed part of Pokemon games, and I feel like more people would be willing to give SwSh a chance if they saw them in depth.
 

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Well, what have we here?


Looks like we're getting more news on Sword & Shield in two days' time. What's everyone hoping to see from this batch, aside from a Lycanroc sighting?
I want to actually see more of the story. In particular, I'm kinda curious what Leon's deal is. There's no way he'd get shown this early if he was the standard champion we've come to expect.

Likewise, some more explanation on Zacian/Zamazenta would be nice to see. Either typing or lore would be pretty neat.
 
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Cosmic77

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We have the title for the episode featuring the finals of the Alolan League.

The Finals! The Strongest Rival Showdown!!

So given the title and the layout of the semifinals, I think we can safely say there's only one matchup that would fit here.

Also, we got some info on the Guzma battle.

Torracat will be used and will (technically) beat Golisopod and face off against Scizor, allowing Ash to make up for lost ground.
 

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We have the title for the episode featuring the finals of the Alolan League.

The Finals! The Strongest Rival Showdown!!

So given the title and the layout of the semifinals, I think we can safely say there's only one matchup that would fit here.

Also, we got some info on the Guzma battle.

Torracat will be used and will (technically) beat Golisopod and face off against Scizor, allowing Ash to make up for lost ground.
It really does feel like each battle is based around a specific member of Ash's team:
Hau - Rowlet
Guzma - Meltan
Gladion - Lycanroc
Kukui - Torracat

Obviously, other Pokemon will sub in during these battles, but it seems that these Pokemon seem to be the focus for each battle.

Say what you will about Sun/Moon's unconventional approach to the Pokemon formula, they have been putting a great deal of effort on developing Ash's team and giving them full character arcs. I really like this approach to the league, it kinda reminds me of the Dark Tournament from Yu Yu Hakusho (where character development and the team dynamic was just as important as the battles themselves).
 

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So that 4chan leak/rumor from may 23 just keeps getting info confirmed: the other rivals are indeed Bede & Marnie, the evil team name is Yell.
Although the many rumors i've seen mentioned a lot of different galar forms, no one got Zigzagoon or Weezing at all. Or heck, that galar zigzagoon had new second evolution.
 

RandomAce

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Watched the recent video. It was shorter than expected and left a lot to be desired. But I really like the Zizagoon line, especially the new third evolution.

Obstagoon gives me serious Midnight Lycanroc vibes. Like their expressions both give us that punk look.
 
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I'm still very much on the fence regarding Sword/Shield, but I do really like Obstagoon. In my opinion, he's the best way to do a humanoid Pokemon: choose a handful of human characteristics and combine them with similar animal characteristics to avoid going too far in one direction.
 

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I'm still very much on the fence regarding Sword/Shield, but I do really like Obstagoon. In my opinion, he's the best way to do a humanoid Pokemon: choose a handful of human characteristics and combine them with similar animal characteristics to avoid going too far in one direction.
I mainly like what Obstagoon stands for: Expanding on the concept of regional forms rather than having them be a one-and-done deal like USUM made it seem.
 

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I do feel that September will be when we get a bunch of info and a rather big blowout of info towards new pokemon, more context of the story, etc. like the sun and moon video showing alolan forms, z-moves and the island challenge. I think we'll also finally see the first evolutions of the starters.

And i gotta say: love the concept of the Pokejobs and the fact that Rotom seems to be everywhere now.
I was already sold on the games since early June but seeing more of the region of Galar + the potential for the story & region secrets i just want more information.
 
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RandomAce

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They did it...

Ash loses after doing a head on Brave Bird Attack against Decidueye’s Sky Attack. Not... turns out despite it looking Rowlet passed out, he was... sleeping. Then Rowlet used his new move after training with his friends and sheds off his skin to get away from Spirit Shackle and countered with Brave Bird and won.

This, this is absurd. I nearly choked myself since I thought Ash did lose because he has a Rowlet... so OBVIOUSLY he’s weaker, and that everything else about him reaching the finals was wrong.

But aside from that, as we get to semi finals, it seems that with Torrocat is apparently going to be used in Ash’s battle against Guzma (at least according to Comsic77). Makes me wonder what Meltan will be doing since it seems he might be doing something that maybe foreshadowing a later episode, presumably to form Melmetal, which would be awesome. If that’s the case, every battle Ash has had in the league up until that point used every one of his Pokémon, except for one... for the finals... Lycanroc.
 

LukeRNG

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They did it...

Ash loses after doing a head on Brave Bird Attack against Decidueye’s Sky Attack. Not... turns out despite it looking Rowlet passed out, he was... sleeping. Then Rowlet used his new move after training with his friends and sheds off his skin to get away from Spirit Shackle and countered with Brave Bird and won.

This, this is absurd. I nearly choked myself since I thought Ash did lose because he has a Rowlet... so OBVIOUSLY he’s weaker, and that everything else about him reaching the finals was wrong.

But aside from that, as we get to semi finals, it seems that with Torrocat is apparently going to be used in Ash’s battle against Guzma (at least according to Comsic77). Makes me wonder what Meltan will be doing since it seems he might be doing something that maybe foreshadowing a later episode, presumably to form Melmetal, which would be awesome. If that’s the case, every battle Ash has had in the league up until that point used every one of his Pokémon, except for one... for the finals... Lycanroc.
Honestly, i got a mini heart attack followed after a big laugh when they showed the fakeout. Apparently from what i've seen some people hated that he won like that.

I do have to say, poor Hau
 
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RandomAce

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Honestly, i got a mini heart attack followed after a big laugh when they showed the fakeout. Apparently from what i've seen some people hated that he won like that.

I do have to say, poor Hau
This was the biggest L I’ve seen any character take in the anime.

Hau was demoralized at the end of the episode.
 

Delzethin

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Overall, an interesting batch of information even if it was on the thin side. Nice to know regional variants as a concept is sticking around for good! Who knows, maybe we'll see Lycanroc variants somewhere down the line?


Also, we got some info on the Guzma battle.

Torracat will be used and will (technically) beat Golisopod and face off against Scizor, allowing Ash to make up for lost ground.
I've seen conflicting theories on whether the Guzma fight will be deliberately 2v2 or whether it's supposed to be 1v1 until Guzma's Golisopod panics and switches out mid-fight. How many 'mons to a side there are in the semifinals could help us figure out how many there'll be in the finals, and between Meltan potentially getting ready to evolve and Gladion having not used his Zoroark yet, the more there are the better the chance we get a climactic finish.

Honestly, i got a mini heart attack followed after a big laugh when they showed the fakeout. Apparently from what i've seen some people hated that he won like that.

I do have to say, poor Hau
Yeah, apparnetly the Serebii regulars saw it as some kind of affront. Personally, I think it was handled okay from a storytelling standpoint--a lot of your viewership already knows Ash is going to win just based on upcoming previews, so the point of building suspense there wasn't to trick anyone into thinking he'd lost, it was to make them wonder how the hell he's going to get through this one. And then came the reveal that Rowlet was just sleeping again, which worked there because it didn't come out of nowhere, it's a character trait that has shown up repeatedly through the entire Alola saga.
 
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Garteam

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Yeah, apparnetly the Serebii regulars saw it as some kind of affront. Personally, I think it was handled okay from a storytelling standpoint--a lot of your viewership already knows Ash is going to win just based on upcoming previews, so the point of building suspense there wasn't to trick anyone into thinking he'd lost, it was to make them wonder how the hell he's going to get through this one. And then came the reveal that Rowlet was just sleeping again, which worked there because it didn't come out of nowhere, it's a character trait that has shown up repeatedly through the entire Alola saga.
I think frustration over the Hau battle has to do more with Decidueye's treatment across the anime as a whole than anyway the fight was actually handled. After 2 and a half years of anticipation, he finally makes his anime debut, only to lose in his first battle.

IMO, I feel that if Hau and Dartrix had been introduced a little earlier and given a little more spotlight (along with a little more time to allow Dartrix to evolve and get some screen time) there would be less negative reception to this battle.
 

Cosmic77

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Based off the initial reactions from people, neither Decideye getting the short end of the stick or Hau losing are what people are upset about. It's actually Rowlet's dopey personality and Hala that are making people upset.

For starters, the person who wrote this episode is notorious for making subpar battles that usually result in ties or end abruptly (and guess who's writing the first part of the finals. :glare:) This is likely one of, if not Rowlet's last battle. This was supposed to be Ash's first non-gag battle in the league, and they couldn't spare one episode where Rowlet isn't goofing off and sleeping. Didn't help that the episode was padded with Rowlet dodging attacks either.

And then there's Hala, Hau's own grandfather, standing up, overturning the ruling, and ultimately costing Hau the match. Personally, I think this was actually an admirable thing for Hala to do, but longtime fans are annoyed because Pokemon have been eliminated in the past for sleeping during a battle. Makes it seem like they pick and choose where to apply this rule.

I've seen conflicting theories on whether the Guzma fight will be deliberately 2v2 or whether it's supposed to be 1v1 until Guzma's Golisopod panics and switches out mid-fight. How many 'mons to a side there are in the semifinals could help us figure out how many there'll be in the finals, and between Meltan potentially getting ready to evolve and Gladion having not used his Zoroark yet, the more there are the better the chance we get a climactic finish.
I can't see how that would be fair, considering how Ash's Pokemon likely took a few hits by then and would be weakened. The only way this could work is if both Guzma and Ash switched Pokemon, which would be redundant, since that would basically be the same thing as a 2on2 battle.
 

RandomAce

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Based off the initial reactions from people, neither Decideye getting the short end of the stick or Hau losing are what people are upset about. It's actually Rowlet's dopey personality and Hala that are making people upset.

For starters, the person who wrote this episode is notorious for making subpar battles that usually result in ties or end abruptly (and guess who's writing the first part of the finals. :glare:) This is likely one of, if not Rowlet's last battle. This was supposed to be Ash's first non-gag battle in the league, and they couldn't spare one episode where Rowlet isn't goofing off and sleeping. Didn't help that the episode was padded with Rowlet dodging attacks either.

And then there's Hala, Hau's own grandfather, standing up, overturning the ruling, and ultimately costing Hau the match. Personally, I think this was actually an admirable thing for Hala to do, but longtime fans are annoyed because Pokemon have been eliminated in the past for sleeping during a battle. Makes it seem like they pick and choose where to apply this rule.



I can't see how that would be fair, considering how Ash's Pokemon likely took a few hits by then and would be weakened. The only way this could work is if both Guzma and Ash switched Pokemon, which would be redundant, since that would basically be the same thing as a 2on2 battle.
The finals is confirmed to be two parts? I’m kinda worried about the finals now. I don’t want the first part to be a jokey laugh fest, or uneventful battle, especially if it is to be believed that Lycanroc is playing a large part of it. And if the first part seems to go in that the direction, it’s worrisome if the second part will follow suit.

Really, after watching some of Lycanroc’s and Gladion’s more serious arcs over the anime season, it would suck hard if Lycanroc’s final battle results in a gimmicky or uninspired lost similar to Hau. As funny as that battle was, it’s still dumb seeing Rowlet beat it’s final evolution, considering how much Hau seemed to train with Decidueye. I would’ve been better if Rowlet during the battle evolved into Dartrix to show some growth, but it seems it was all done for a cheap laugh.
 

Cosmic77

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The finals is confirmed to be two parts? I’m kinda worried about the finals now. I don’t want the first part to be a jokey laugh fest, or uneventful battle, especially if it is to be believed that Lycanroc is playing a large part of it. And if the first part seems to go in that the direction, it’s worrisome if the second part will follow suit.

Really, after watching some of Lycanroc’s and Gladion’s more serious arcs over the anime season, it would suck hard if Lycanroc’s final battle results in a gimmicky or uninspired lost similar to Hau. As funny as that battle was, it’s still dumb seeing Rowlet beat it’s final evolution, considering how much Hau seemed to train with Decidueye. I would’ve been better if Rowlet during the battle evolved into Dartrix to show some growth, but it seems it was all done for a cheap laugh.
It's not confirmed, but I'd be very surprised if it wasn't. Both Hau and Guzma required two parts, so I doubt this one will be any different.

There's also a chance the episode in question spends a lot of its time focusing on preparation rather than the battle itself. This writer is terrible at writing battles, but his slice-of-life episodes are decent.
 

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Here's my prediction for the rest of the Sun/Moon anime:
>Semi-finals are intended as a 1 vs. 1 battle, similar to the quarter finals.
>Knowing he'll be facing Guzma, Kukui advises Ash to use Torracat to take on his bug-types.
>The battle starts somewhat normally, with Torracat using its speed to battle Golisopod.
>Eventually, Torracat lands a critical Fire Blast, leading Golisopod to retreat using Emergency Escape.
>The judges rule against Guzma's disqualification due to his switch being out of his control, leading them to instead declare the battle a 2 vs. 2 with the second Pokemon being their closest second Pokemon.
>Guzma is forced to use Scizor and thusly loses to Torracat due to his type advantage, angering him greatly.
>Guzma demands that Golisopod overwhelm Torracat using Liquidation and brute force, KOing it.
>Ash is forced to bring out Meltan, who greatly struggles against Golisopod.
>The cry of Meltan facing Golisopod causes the other Meltan to come to his aid, leading them to merge and evolve into Melmetal.
>Melmetal is able to stand up to Golisopod's strength thanks to its large stature and new Double Iron Bash.
>Melmetal KOs Golisopod by powering Double Iron Bash into Corkscrew Crash, winning Ash the battle.

>Gladion battles Kukui, using Silvally's ground-type form against Marowak.
>Gladion wins due to type advantage.

>Finals begin, with the agreement being a four-on-four battle.
>Gladion leads with Silvally in his ground-type form, Ash responds by sending out Rowlet.
>Rowlet initially does well, keeping up with Silvally and keeping out of its range with flight.
>Rowlet lands a hit, revealing that Silvally is actually Zoroark.
>Rowlet attempts to create a diversion to match Zoroark's disguise, getting KOed for its trouble.
>Torracat is sent out and revenge KOs Zoroark.
>Umbreon faces Torracat, with Torracat coming out on top using its fighting moves.
>Silvally is formally sent out, using its ground-type form to resist Torracat's fire and KO him.
>Pikachu is sent out to face Silvally.
>We get the standard "Ash forgot ground is immune to electricity" gag.
>Pikachu struggles against Silvally, who crushes the arena around him and flings Pikachu around easily.
>Ash eventually gets the idea to use this damaged arena to his advantage, having Pikachu lure Silvally into various traps.
>Ash has Pikachu overload an exposed circuit, creating an explosion which KOs both opponents.
>Ash and Gladion are down to their final Pokemon, their Lycanrocs.
>Midnight-Lycanroc initially has the advantage, as it can simply outmuscle its counterpart despite being slower.
>Inspired by Guzma's Golisopod, Ash has his Lycanroc enter its red-eyed state to power through Gladion's.
>However, the red-eyed state makes Lycanroc too easy to predict, leading Midnight Lycanroc to turn its power against it with a counter.
>Ash remembers what he learned from his battle with Nanu, that Lycanroc's red-eyed state is meant to work in harmony with its regular state and vice-versa.
>Ash has Lycanroc exit the red-eyed state to attack Midnight Lycanroc head on with Accelerock, which Gladion believes he can simply power through.
>At the last second, Ash tells Lycanroc to activate red-eyed state, giving him the power to damage his opponent.
>Ash continues using this strategy of alternating forms to great success, allowing him to push Gladion into a corner.
>Feeling pressured, Gladion has Midnight-Lycanroc use Devastating Drake, with Ash responding in kind with Splintered Stormshards.
>The two attacks clash, with Splintered Stormshards coming out on top and KOing Midnight Lycanroc.
>Ash wins and becomes Alola's first champion.

>Ash has his ceremonial battle with the Masked Royal.
>The Masked Royal leads with a special foreign Pokemon named Corviknight.
>Unaware of its typing, Ash leads with Lycanroc under the assumption its a regular Flying-type.
>Corviknight is relatively unaffected from Lycanroc's stone edge and uses this opportunity to KO it with Steel Wing.
>Ash responds in kind with Rowlet, mocks its overly serious nature to provoke it into attacking a Feather Dance decoy.
>Rowlet uses this opportunity to land a Brave Bird on Corviknight, who simply responds in kind with its own Brave Bird.
>Rowlet is KOed under the intense power of this move.
>Pikachu is sent out for the revenge KO, taking it down easily with an Electric Ball.
>The Masked Royal sends out Braviary.
>Pikachu attempts to hit Braviary with its Electric Ball, but is unable to due to his high speed.
>Realizing this, Ash has Pikachu restrain Braviary with an Electroweb trap.
>Pikachu approaches the restrained Braviary to finish him off, but is hit by a surprise Rock Slide which KOs him.
>Melmetal is sent out.
>Dispute being freed, Braviary is unable to damage him, leading Melmetal to KO him with a Thunder Punch.
>Incineroar is sent out to take on Melmetal.
>Incineroar uses Bulk Up to increase its physical strength and challenge Melmetal's large size.
>Incineroar reduces Melmetal's defence using Heat Wave, allowing him to go in for an easy KO with Cross Chop.
>Torracat is sent out
>Torracat attempts to use the type advantage of Fighting moves against Incineroar, but fails due to Incineroar's enhanced state
>Ash instead has Torracat boost itself up as well, using Flame Charge to power itself up and dodge Incineroar's attacks
>This initially works, but Incineroar counters this strategy by covering all angles using Darkest Lariat, deflecting Torracat to the ground of the ring.
>Incineroar decides to finish Torracat off with a Malicious Moonsault, attempting to crush Torracat while its on the ground.
>Ash sees this as an opening, hitting Incineroar with an Inferno Overdrive while its wide open in attack.
>This launches Incineroar back into the ceiling, leading to be KOed once it falls back to the ground and letting Torracat officially defeat its rival.
>However, Torracat faints before Masked Royal can send out his next Pokemon, leading Masked Royal to win the overall battle.

>All the students of Kukui's class graduate.
>While at graduation, Ash reflects on Corviknight's strength.
>He asks Kukui about Corviknight, with him saying it was from the Galar region.
>Ash sees this as a sign that Galar is the next destination in his journey.
>Ash decides to relinquish his title to Gladion, who he believes will do a good job as Alola's champion.
>Rather than leaving his Pokemon at Oak's lab, he instead decides to give them to others so they may live in Alola.
>Lycanroc is given to Gladion so he may become defend his title as Alola's champion.
>Torracat is given to the Masked Royal so he may live his dream of being a wrestler alongside Incineroar.
>Rowlet is given to Hau, who lounges around at his house eating malasadas and bickering with Decidueye.
>Melmetal is given to the Aether Foundation, who has him serve as an Ultra Guardian who specializes in relocating Ultra Beasts.
>The series ends with Ash and Pikachu waving goodbye to their friends, rivals, and Pokemon as he sails away on the boat to Galar.
 
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Cosmic77

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Here's my prediction for the rest of the Sun/Moon anime:
>Semi-finals are intended as a 1 vs. 1 battle, similar to the quarter finals.
>Knowing he'll be facing Guzma, Kukui advises Ash to use Torracat to take on his bug-types.
>The battle starts somewhat normally, with Torracat using its speed to battle Golisopod.
>Eventually, Torracat lands a critical Fire Blast, leading Golisopod to retreat using Emergency Escape.
>The judges rule against Guzma's disqualification due to his switch being out of his control, leading them to instead declare the battle a 2 vs. 2 with the second Pokemon being their closest second Pokemon.
>Guzma is forced to use Scizor and thusly loses to Torracat due to his type advantage, angering him greatly.
>Guzma demands that Golisopod overwhelm Torracat using Liquidation and brute force, KOing it.
>Ash is forced to bring out Meltan, who greatly struggles against Golisopod.
>The cry of Meltan facing Golisopod causes the other Meltan to come to his aid, leading them to merge and evolve into Melmetal.
>Melmetal is able to stand up to Golisopod's strength thanks to its large stature and new Double Iron Bash.
>Melmetal KOs Golisopod by powering Double Iron Bash into Corkscrew Crash, winning Ash the battle.

>Gladion battles Kukui, using Silvally's ground-type form against Marowak.
>Gladion wins due to type advantage.

>Finals begin, with the agreement being a four-on-four battle.
>Gladion leads with Silvally in his ground-type form, Ash responds by sending out Rowlet.
>Rowlet initially does well, keeping up with Silvally and keeping out of its range with flight.
>Rowlet lands a hit, revealing that Silvally is actually Zoroark.
>Rowlet attempts to create a diversion to match Zoroark's disguise, getting KOed for its trouble.
>Torracat is sent out and revenge KOs Zoroark.
>Umbreon faces Torracat, with Torracat coming out on top using its fighting moves.
>Silvally is formally sent out, using its ground-type form to resist Torracat's fire and KO him.
>Pikachu is sent out to face Silvally.
>We get the standard "Ash forgot ground is immune to electricity" gag.
>Pikachu struggles against Silvally, who crushes the arena around him and flings Pikachu around easily.
>Ash eventually gets the idea to use this damaged arena to his advantage, having Pikachu lure Silvally into various traps.
>Ash has Pikachu overload an exposed circuit, creating an explosion which KOs both opponents.
>Ash and Gladion are down to their final Pokemon, their Lycanrocs.
>Midnight-Lycanroc initially has the advantage, as it can simply outmuscle its counterpart despite being slower.
>Inspired by Guzma's Golisopod, Ash has his Lycanroc enter its red-eyed state to power through Gladion's.
>However, the red-eyed state makes Lycanroc too easy to predict, leading Midnight Lycanroc to turn its power against it with a counter.
>Ash remembers what he learned from his battle with Nanu, that Lycanroc's red-eyed state is meant to work in harmony with its regular state and vice-versa.
>Ash has Lycanroc exit the red-eyed state to attack Midnight Lycanroc head on with Accelerock, which Gladion believes he can simply power through.
>At the last second, Ash tells Lycanroc to activate red-eyed state, giving him the power to damage his opponent.
>Ash continues using this strategy of alternating forms to great success, allowing him to push Gladion into a corner.
>Feeling pressured, Gladion has Midnight-Lycanroc use Devastating Drake, with Ash responding in kind with Splintered Stormshards.
>The two attacks clash, with Splintered Stormshards coming out on top and KOing Midnight Lycanroc.
>Ash wins and becomes Alola's first champion.

>Ash has his ceremonial battle with the Masked Royal.
>The Masked Royal leads with a special foreign Pokemon named Corviknight.
>Unaware of its typing, Ash leads with Lycanroc under the assumption its a regular Flying-type.
>Corviknight is relatively unaffected from Lycanroc's stone edge and uses this opportunity to KO it with Steel Wing.
>Ash responds in kind with Rowlet, mocks its overly serious nature to provoke it into attacking a Feather Dance decoy.
>Rowlet uses this opportunity to land a Brave Bird on Corviknight, who simply responds in kind with its own Brave Bird.
>Rowlet is KOed under the intense power of this move.
>Pikachu is sent out for the revenge KO, taking it down easily with an Electric Ball.
>The Masked Royal sends out Braviary.
>Pikachu attempts to hit Braviary with its Electric Ball, but is unable to due to his high speed.
>Realizing this, Ash has Pikachu restrain Braviary with an Electroweb trap.
>Pikachu approaches the restrained Braviary to finish him off, but is hit by a surprise Rock Slide which KOs him.
>Melmetal is sent out.
>Dispute being freed, Braviary is unable to damage him, leading Melmetal to KO him with a Thunder Punch.
>Incineroar is sent out to take on Melmetal.
>Incineroar uses Bulk Up to increase its physical strength and challenge Melmetal's large size.
>Incineroar reduces Melmetal's defence using Heat Wave, allowing him to go in for an easy KO with Cross Chop.
>Torracat is sent out
>Torracat attempts to use the type advantage of Fighting moves against Incineroar, but fails due to Incineroar's enhanced state
>Ash instead has Torracat boost itself up as well, using Flame Charge to power itself up and dodge Incineroar's attacks
>This initially works, but Incineroar counters this strategy by covering all angles using Darkest Lariat, deflecting Torracat to the ground of the ring.
>Incineroar decides to finish Torracat off with a Malicious Moonsault, attempting to crush Torracat while its on the ground.
>Ash sees this as an opening, hitting Incineroar with an Inferno Overdrive while its wide open in attack.
>This launches Incineroar back into the ceiling, leading to be KOed once it falls back to the ground and letting Torracat officially defeat its rival.
>However, Torracat faints before Masked Royal can send out his next Pokemon, leading Masked Royal to win the overall battle.

>All the students of Kukui's class graduate.
>While at graduation, Ash reflects on Corviknight's strength.
>He asks Kukui about Corviknight, with him saying it was from the Galar region.
>Ash sees this as a sign that Galar is the next destination in his journey.
>Ash decides to relinquish his title to Gladion, who he believes will do a good job as Alola's champion.
>Rather than leaving his Pokemon at Oak's lab, he instead decides to give them to others so they may live in Alola.
>Lycanroc is given to Gladion so he may become defend his title as Alola's champion.
>Torracat is given to the Masked Royal so he may live his dream of being a wrestler alongside Incineroar.
>Rowlet is given to Hau, who lounges around at his house eating malasadas and bickering with Decidueye.
>Melmetal is given to the Aether Foundation, who has him serve as an Ultra Guardian who specializes in relocating Ultra Beasts.
>The series ends with Ash and Pikachu waving goodbye to their friends, rivals, and Pokemon as he sails away on the boat to Galar.
I'm not sure how I feel about Ash just handing all of his Pokemon away like that. Kinda feels harsh and careless of Ash. If I had to take a guess, Ash will either leave his Pokemon with Oak like always, or Kukui will be the Alolan version of Prof. Oak and keep them at his house.

And regarding the Champion thing, the director recently came out and stated that winning a league doesn't make you a Pokemon Master. Seeing how Alola doesn't even have an elite four yet, I don't think we'll be getting a Champion of any kind. It'll probably just be the winner receiving a trophy and the title of the first winner of the Alola League.
 

Garteam

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I'm not sure how I feel about Ash just handing all of his Pokemon away like that. Kinda feels harsh and careless of Ash. If I had to take a guess, Ash will either leave his Pokemon with Oak like always, or Kukui will be the Alolan version of Prof. Oak and keep them at his house.

And regarding the Champion thing, the director recently came out and stated that winning a league doesn't make you a Pokemon Master. Seeing how Alola doesn't even have an elite four yet, I don't think we'll be getting a Champion of any kind. It'll probably just be the winner receiving a trophy and the title of the first winner of the Alola League.
That's fair, I have to admit that the Kukui idea is probably better than Ash handing out his Pokemon. It just feels odd having the Alola 'mons stuck away in Professor Oak's lab, considering they're not really on a journey and are more living a slice of life adventure.
 

Delzethin

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You know, one thing I've actually really liked about how the anime has handled the character development of Ash's Lycanroc is how it almost feels informed by actual fighting game mentalities and mental hangups. No, seriously!



Consider how the fury mode was portrayed at first. It was never just your typical enraged "Hulk smash" kind of thing, it's activated just as much by stress or anxiety or pressure, and was portrayed as purely a downside before the training session with Tapu Bulu helped Ash's Lycanroc learn to control it. And not in the typical "threat to friend and foe alike", either, it was a competitive weakness, as that loss of control made for a fighter that was predictable and easy to defeat.

Ever had something happen mid-match that puts you on tilt? Suddenly, you can't think clearly, forget your options, and end up getting bodied because of it? That's exactly what went on at first, and Nanu went out of his way in his preliminary battle with Ash to show how easily a smart opponent could manipulate that for an easy win.

And while it didn't take nearly as much time to overcome as it usually does in real life (hey, this is a shonen anime), it does say something that finally gaining control of that fury involved accepting that the anger was there without being consumed by it.

Having your trainer say he accepts you despite your flaws and losses also helps!



And Ash's actual Grand Trial demonstrated what can happen when you can tap into that anger without getting put on tilt. Lycanroc learned Counter mid-match, which, sure, is typical Pokémon fare, but think of what it meant from a competitive standpoint. Channeling that fury properly led to figuring out a completely new strategy on the fly and pulling it off successfully.



But this kind of surprisingly thoughtful writing didn't just show up for Nanu's trial! In fact, there were shades of it back when Ash's Lycanroc, then a Rockruff, first joined the team!

Remember the little fight club the local wild 'mons on Melemele Island had going on? How then-Rockruff had never won a battle against one of the local top players, a Magmar? It was Ash's advice--and a training session--that finally got him a win against his bracket demon.

And what was that advice? To stop running in blindly and wait for your opponent to do something first. In other words...he took the first big step low level players have to take in competitive play to truly improve, and stopped just pressing buttons and started playing the neutral game. And it worked!



"Wait a minute," you may be thinking, "Isn't this pushing it? What makes you so sure there are fighting game undertones going on here?

Well, I don't know for sure--you all have known me long enough to know I read too far into stuff. But for what it's worth, there are signs that someone on the staff has a background in fighting games. Particularly in scenes like this:



That's a very Tekken-esque combo there, Tapu Lele.
 
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MasteRMerF

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Hey guys, been lurking here and there for a while trying to keep up with the thread. Had some big things going on recently (i.e a new apartment :)) but I'm so glad to see this thread still being active for so long. I haven't been keeping up with the anime so it's nice being able to come to the thread and read up about Lycanroc and everything else going on. I'm loving the Galarian forms in Sword & Shield. Here's hoping we get some love for Lycanroc.
 

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For those curious, the anime episode featuring the rest of the quarterfinals aired yesterday. Matchups for the semis have been locked in.



Based on how these next few weeks play out, we could be about to see a lot of attention headed our way.

Also, does anyone have alternate versions of these pics? Serebii takes them down after a few days, and the only high res versions I could find didn't cooperate with Smashboards for whatever reason.

EDIT: Apparently these don't either. Damn it, anyone know a fix for this?
 
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RandomAce

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For those curious, the anime episode featuring the rest of the quarterfinals aired yesterday. Matchups for the semis have been locked in.



Based on how these next few weeks play out, we could be about to see a lot of attention headed our way.

Also, does anyone have alternate versions of these pics? Serebii takes them down after a few days, and the only high res versions I could find didn't cooperate with Smashboards for whatever reason.

EDIT: Apparently these don't either. Damn it, anyone know a fix for this?
They do appear when I quote you in a text box. Smashboards is going through an image problem... again, so it’s probably undergoing fixes at the moment.

That Lana vs Guzma battle was pretty brutal. From the throught punch to holding Primerina like how a Fisherman grabs a dead fish. It was a bit sad to Lana after she tried to take advantage of Guzma’s playstyle.

Alright now onto the semi-finals.

Just looking at the previews, the semi-finals look like their getting a major quality boost. I’m pretty relieved since now the impact of these battle could be greatly improved, and overall be more interesting to watch. What I am wondering is what pokemon Gladion could potentially use in the finals. He seems to be going with Midnight again, and doesn’t he have a Zoroark that hasn’t been used?

I’m wondering if he’s saving that for the finals.
 
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Delzethin

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Just looking at the previews, the semi-finals look like their getting a major quality boost. I’m pretty relieved since now the impact of these battle could be greatly improved, and overall be more interesting to watch. What I am wondering is what pokemon Gladion could potentially use in the finals. He seems to be going with Midnight again, and doesn’t he have a Zoroark that hasn’t been used?

I’m wondering if he’s saving that for the finals.
The lack of Zoroark so far could prove problematic unless we get concrete proof the finals are more than a 1v1 affair. It'd be weird for an episode focused on Gladion just before the Alola League to have ended with him gaining a new party member...only to never use it.

On the other hand, Gladion isn't the underhanded type, so a situation where he sends out his Zoroark pretending to be his Lycanroc as his only combatant is also on the unlikely side. Gladion's more the type to want to win in a straight fight to prove his skills as a trainer are better. So...still seems more likely than not that we'll see multiple 'mons per side in the finals, but it's worth keeping a close eye on.

And regarding the Champion thing, the director recently came out and stated that winning a league doesn't make you a Pokemon Master. Seeing how Alola doesn't even have an elite four yet, I don't think we'll be getting a Champion of any kind. It'll probably just be the winner receiving a trophy and the title of the first winner of the Alola League.
Wait, the director said that? When? Do you have a link to an article or the like?
Because if what you're saying is true at face value...that definitely comes off as getting out ahead of a scenario where Ash really does win the Alola League but still keeps traveling to other regions.

Hm...

Hey guys, been lurking here and there for a while trying to keep up with the thread. Had some big things going on recently (i.e a new apartment :)) but I'm so glad to see this thread still being active for so long. I haven't been keeping up with the anime so it's nice being able to come to the thread and read up about Lycanroc and everything else going on. I'm loving the Galarian forms in Sword & Shield. Here's hoping we get some love for Lycanroc.
Nice to see you still hanging around! Seems like most of the support threads have slowed to a crawl since December, but we're still alive.
 
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Cosmic77

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Wait, the director said that? When? Do you have a link to an article or the like?
Because if what you're saying is true at face value...that definitely comes off as getting out ahead of a scenario where Ash really does win the Alola League but still keeps traveling to other regions.

Hm...
I don't have a link because the article came from a magazine in Japan. A friend showed it to me and translated it.

Nothing was revealed that we didn't already know. The winner of a Pokemon league challenges the Champion league (Elite 4 and Champion). Alola doesn't even have an Elite 4 yet, so there's not really a need to worry about Ash "handing down his title" to someone else. They could either not address the issue of a Champion at all, or declare Ash Champion and request he defend his title once they organize an Elite 4, which probably won't happen during the life of the anime.

The timing of the quote is the most interesting thing, though that could the director being coy, knowing Ash doesn't win.
 
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Delzethin

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In case you missed it, we got another batch of news for Sword & Shield yesterday. If you did miss it, though, I wouldn't blame you--it only goes over some new abilities, items, and traits of attacks in Dynamax mode.


Still no Lycanroc sighting, but I don't think it's cause for concern yet. News for this generation is coming a lot slower than what we saw with Sun & Moon, meaning there's still a lot we don't know about yet even though we're halfway through August. Seriously, we only know of 17 new 'mons + 3 regional variants (counting Obstagoon as new, since it has no counterpart) so far! Compare to this time three years ago, where (if I'm remembering who got revealed when correctly), we knew of about 40 'mons + 8 variants.

On the anime front, I've seen a theory going around: What if Ash winning the Alola League nets him a sponsorship offer from a company in Galar, and that's what gets him to leave Alola and start the next saga of the anime? A big win in a new, lower ranked league would be the kind of thing to get attention from sponsors.
 
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Cosmic77

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Wanted to point out that we have 219 Pokemon confirmed for SwSh. Considering how we barely know any of the new Pokemon, I have a feeling we're gonna get one of the largest regional Pokedexes to date. It's already looking like it'll beat SuMo's.

On the anime front, I've seen a theory going around: What if Ash winning the Alola League nets him a sponsorship offer from a company in Galar, and that's what gets him to leave Alola and start the next saga of the anime? A big win in a new, lower ranked league would be the kind of thing to get attention from sponsors.
I mean, that's what I'd like to see happen, but I don't know how we'll have the time. There's still that small Mohn arc we gotta cover, and then the kids will likely graduate. If it does happen, it'll be brief or in the next series.
 

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By the way, the episode that included the first half of Kiawe vs. Gladion aired a few hours ago. As it turns out, the semifinal matches are, in fact, 2v2. So that bodes well for the finals featuring fuller teams.
 
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Cosmic77

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If the semis are 2on2, then the finals are probably going to be 3on3, which makes me think Zoroark won't get used at all.

And since we're on the topic, Ash will have to use 3/5 of his Pokemon for the finals if it's 3on3. Lycanroc is definitely one of them since it hasn't done squat so far, and I'm fairly confident Rowlet has had it's last battle. So that means Pikachu, Torracat, and Meltan are who we have left, and Meltan may as well be confirmed if it doesn't battle Guzma.
 

RandomAce

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If the semis are 2on2, then the finals are probably going to be 3on3, which makes me think Zoroark won't get used at all.

And since we're on the topic, Ash will have to use 3/5 of his Pokemon for the finals if it's 3on3. Lycanroc is definitely one of them since it hasn't done squat so far, and I'm fairly confident Rowlet has had it's last battle. So that means Pikachu, Torracat, and Meltan are who we have left, and Meltan may as well be confirmed if it doesn't battle Guzma.
Going by the preview, it seems that Torrocat may have either beaten Golisopod (or made it use it’s Emergency Exit) and is going against Scizor. Regardless, it seems Torrocat is the spotlight Pokémon for Ash’s semifinals.

I’d say since Lycanroc hasn’t done anything yet in the league. It bodes well that Lycanroc could be the main Pokémon for the finals.

By the way, the episode that included the first half of Kiawe vs. Gladion aired a few hours ago. As it turns out, the semifinal matches are, in fact, 2v2. So that bodes well for the finals featuring fuller teams.
Regarding that battle...

It seems Midnight himself also has a fury state, where after dealing with so much damage, as a last resort tap’s into a more wild state for more speed and strength.

It makes me wonder if Dusk can tap into this state as well. I know it has something similar with it’s fury state, but the completely bright red eyes seems to be another level beyond. I could see where in a potential neck and neck battle, Dusk will undergo the same thing to attempt to clutch in a victory. Would make for an epic final battle.

Wonder if it’s something that could be a part of Midnight’s move set if he would ever join Smash.
 
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Delzethin

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Regarding that battle...

It seems Midnight himself also has a fury state, where after dealing with so much damage, as a last resort tap’s into a more wild state for more speed and strength.

It makes me wonder if Dusk can tap into this state as well. I know it has something similar with it’s fury state, but the completely bright red eyes seems to be another level beyond. I could see where in a potential neck and neck battle, Dusk will undergo the same thing to attempt to clutch in a victory. Would make for an epic final battle.

Wonder if it’s something that could be a part of Midnight’s move set if he would ever join Smash.
Hoo boy, you weren't kidding.



This could be setting up one hell of a final battle if both Lycanrocs are on the ropes for the last stretch. Unusual that Gladion's Lycanroc actually got knocked out by Kiawe's Turtonator, albeit after taking out his Marowak and doing a lot of damage first. Usually the whole "rival reveals a new technique right before the protagonist fights them for the last time" thing has the rival curbstomp whoever they're using it on. Maybe it's their way of showing Kiawe is still a strong trainer in his own right before Silvally puts an end to his run?

If the semis are 2on2, then the finals are probably going to be 3on3, which makes me think Zoroark won't get used at all.

And since we're on the topic, Ash will have to use 3/5 of his Pokemon for the finals if it's 3on3. Lycanroc is definitely one of them since it hasn't done squat so far, and I'm fairly confident Rowlet has had it's last battle. So that means Pikachu, Torracat, and Meltan are who we have left, and Meltan may as well be confirmed if it doesn't battle Guzma.
If it's 3v3, I think Gladion will probably go with his Zoroark over Umbreon. The latter did already get a highlight in the match against Lillie.

And yeah, Pikachu-Lycanroc-Meltan/Melmetal would probably be Ash's lineup in that scenario. Though we don't know when the other Meltan will get to the Alola League, so it's hard to say when Meltan's evolution will happen--might sub in one of Ash's other two 'mons instead if it hasn't by that point. Considering the League is on a separate island, it might not happen until the post-League shenanigans that wrap up the Alola saga. Or maybe during the exhibition match with Kukui?
 
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Cosmic77

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If I interpreted the previews correctly, the battle between Ash and Guzma will go like this:

1. Torracat deals critical damage to Golisopod, causing it to activate Emergency Exit.
2. Guzma sends out Scizor and it loses to Torracat.
3. Golisopod is brought back out and either loses to Torracat or Ash's next Pokemon.
 
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