What Percent of Pokemon is...?

Discussion in 'Off Topic' started by ddbargardi, Apr 6, 2014.

  1. ddbargardi

    ddbargardi Active Member

    Hey everyone. I'm a senior from the US and feel like I really know my stuff. I have access to pretty much any deck yet I only ever preform mediocre. I hate to blame my games on luck but it seems like more often than not, I lose a game because of my bad luck, or opponents good luck. Just looking for a break down of what percent you guys think luck, deck building, knowledge, and anything else that has to do with the outcome of a tournament.

    How's this? LMK what you think and why I'm not performing as well as I think I should be. :)

    Luck: %40
    Deck Building: %20
    Skill: %20
    Experience (practice, testing): %20
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2014
  2. Serperior

    Serperior Well-Known Member

    Shuffling could be part of it if you shuffle improperly
  3. Gelato

    Gelato The Swarm

    I'd say experience is at least 30%
  4. Kirbyswag

    Kirbyswag Pie

    I think luck is higher than people think....
  5. PellOfTheTundra

    PellOfTheTundra Do you even LT-87

    Not really. This format's pretty simple.
    But I don't think it's as high as what some people think either.
    I'd say 40% is fair.
  6. Gelato

    Gelato The Swarm

    I meant experience with your deck as in knowing it inside and out.
  7. KPiplup

    KPiplup An Imposter


    That's how I see it. I think it's in an upswing right now though, deck building is becoming much more important.
    Mares789 likes this.
  8. ddbargardi

    ddbargardi Active Member

    I really appreciate all of the responses.
  9. jeffrey3421

    jeffrey3421 Swarm Wannabe

    Doesn't skill=experience kinda? I mean, the longer you've been playing, the better you are probably
  10. PellOfTheTundra

    PellOfTheTundra Do you even LT-87

    i know a LOT people who have played longer than i have that are worse at the current tournament format
    so no, skill =/= experience
  11. Charranitar

    Charranitar Well-Known Member

    1/3 skill, 1/3 deckbuilding skill, and 1/3 luck I would think. Experience doesn't really fit, because all experience really means is experiencing the game. There are plenty of people who have the most experience in the game who are very poor players. The importance of experience is that if you're able to learn from your experiences, you can increase your skill and deckbuilding.

    I think deckbuilding is pretty important. This goes even more into meta gaming and deck selection on a more macro level. If you show up with the wrong deck for the tournament, even though it might be a good build, then you will do poorly. Additionally, without a good deck, no matter what ability you have, you won't be able to do well in a tournament. You can also reduce the amount of luck needed to win by playing the right counts of card, and playing cards like Jirachi EX or Delphox to decrease the amount of luck (as a result of draw) that you may experience.

    Skill is highly important. There's plenty of people who can get good lists for decks, but don't do well, just because they're not making the right plays. If you don't know how to approach or react to certain situations, then you won't be able to come out on top.

    Skill and deck building making up 2/3 of what it takes to do well I think is a good fit. That's why you see players who are nearing the maximum levels of those will will hover in that 60-80% win range, even on their not so hot days.

    Now, luck should not be ignored in this game, it comes in a lot of forms.

    -Coin flips, these are pretty pervasive in the game right now, and games can be decided by a flip.
    -Luck of the draw. If you play all the right cards, but don't draw enough of the right cards at the right moments you won't do well. This one counts for double as the luck of your opponent's draw also matters a bunch.
    -Tournament luck is also important, and hitting the correct matchups is very important. Meta game skill is important in that, to make sure that you're hitting as much of the positive matchups as possible just based on the composition of the field. However, you could be in a field of 100 players, playing Blastoise, and then get paired against the only two Garbodor decks in the tournament and not do well as a result of that. Also, things like getting downpaired, uppaired, and getting random byes, or your opponent making a mistake that results in a game error, all contribute to tournament performance.

    So if you think about it on a typical grade scale, someone who has maxed out on skill and deckbuilding, could have a day where they have no luck, and get 66% for their grade for the day, resulting in a D and a poor day. Someone who isn't maxed out, but is a solid player, with say 30/35 in deckbuilding and 28/35 in skill, is at 58 base, and if they can hit 32% luck, then they will probably get an A and go deep in the tournament.

    This isn't perfect, as someone with a say 15/35 deck, and 20/35 skill, would only be at 35, which means even at 33%, they'd only get to 68%, which is a D still. So with that, it says that said player should probably never do well in a tournament. However, players like this can win the tournament every now and then.

    I'd look at this grade scale as more of a means for predicting which tournaments are most lkely to do well at a tournament (kind of a betting analytics). So we can kind of get a ranking on how well we expect these players to do based off the criteria of the first two. And then we can look at what changed the actual tournament results from the expected based on how much luck affected these players.
    pokemonguy, PP101, Floral and 3 others like this.
  12. ShinyEevee

    ShinyEevee The not so shiny

    Deck building is close to 90%. But assuming your deck is well built I would say its 40% luck, 30% skill, 20% matchup. 10% keeping calm and not making stupid mistakes. Its not really a skill issue if you make a mistake you KNOW is wrong and realize a second to late.
  13. baby_mario

    baby_mario Doesn't even care

    The amount of skill required varies according to the format. DX-on is generally considered the high point. Right now it is as low as it has been since Base Set days. It also varies within formats according to the match up. Luxchomp mirrors needed more skill to win than Machamp mirrors, for example. I believe it is more possible for a mediocre player to beat a good one than it has been for years. The reason for this is in-built lack of consistency in the game, but I've ranted enough about that in the past.

    Deckbuilding has become less of a factor because internet. Good lists were once jealously guarded and only available if you knew the right people. Now you can get them via google. Ok they might not be the very best, but they are good enough with the current levels of variance. There are far fewer players with bad decks than there used to be, and there are far fewer misplays being made because the decks are so straightforward.

    Experience counts for something because the more familiar you are with game play states and correct responses, the more likely you are to make the right play. Time management is also a big thing at the moment, and experience helps with this too.
  14. Professor_N

    Professor_N Well-Known Member

    I feel like with the deck building part of this game right now it often comes down to if you play 2 or 3 cards that are better than 2 or 3 other cards in most cases. From a personal tournament experience as an example, I could have played a two Shadow Triad rather than two Frozen City and that would have won me many games. It's just the little things like that in deck building that can really make or break a tournament run.

    I feel like skill is simply not making misplays. Speaking of not making misplays, that's where experience comes in. If you play a deck enough, you can make the best plays without taking up a lot of time, which is huuuuge in the current tournament structure.

    So I would say it's probably 40% luck, 10% deckbuilding, 20% skill, 30% experience.
  15. baby_mario

    baby_mario Doesn't even care

    That's less about deckbuilding and more about metagame anticipation. If you had spent all day playing against RayBoar and Blastoise, then you could be in here saying how those 2 Frozen City made all the difference to your success.

    But it isn't even that simple. You could correctly guess that only a handful people would play Rain Dance style decks and go with Triad. Then TOM pairs you against Rain Dance for the first two rounds and you are royally screwed despite making the correct call.
  16. Professor_N

    Professor_N Well-Known Member

    That's the thing; I played against multiple Rain Dance decks and also anticipated that Rain Dance would be popular. Even with so many people there playing Rain Dance, Frozen City still didn't do enough work. Whereas a fifth Plasma Energy would have won me the game in multiple cases.

    Either way, isn't metagaming also deck building in a sense? You are changing the way you build your deck based on what you feel will be played.
  17. baby_mario

    baby_mario Doesn't even care

    Ummm . . . . yes and no. Like a lot of things in Pokemon, everyone defines stuff differently so it's difficult to use these terms.

    Deckbuilding to me is the way a deck is constructed on a fundamental level. This probably doesn't matter very much any more as every deck follows a somewhat standard pattern when it comes to Pokemon lines and Supporter counts (the options we have for constructing a deck's engine are extremely limited).

    Metagaming is somewhat different as it can involve switching decks altogether. It's part of deckbuilding in the sense that a good deckbuilder will be able to calculate the trade off between consistency loss and effective teching. I would not consider playing Frozen City a sign of 'bad deckbuilding' in itself - it has been used successfully in the past. There may have been other ways of getting Triad into the deck though.
  18. Professor_N

    Professor_N Well-Known Member

    There certainly could have been. It could have been something as simple as only running 1 Lightning Energy instead of two, as the main purpose of Lightning anyways is to deal with E-Hammers.
  19. Otaku

    Otaku Well-Known Member

    I am going to approach this another way because simply put... incomplete picture is incomplete.

    Attributes, Advantages, Disadvantages, Skills, and Possessions should be considered. If that sounds weird or like a role-playing game... yes, yes it is. Biggest thing is Skills, plural, because it isn't just one! I'll get to chance/luck after I explain the rest. If you're wondering, this is taken from GURPS, the Generic Universal Role-Playing System, designed to do a decent job of mimicking just about anything, and if you really wanted to... even a Pokémon TCG tournament as an RPG. XD If you skip everything else, please at least give the Skills part a look. GURPS uses "Character Points" to "buy" stuff, with stuff that gives you more options/capabilities costing CP and stuff that reduces your options/capabilities giving you back CP to spend elsewhere.

    The game's Basic Attributes mostly only matter under extenuating circumstances, unless you've got one of them that is low. Said Attributes Strength (rarely matters for gamers), Dexterity (clumsiness slows down games, smooth moves can be intimidating), Intelligence (this represents the sum total of your mental capacity, so computational ability, problem solving, acuity, strength of mind, etc. and is the main one of relevance), and Health (just what it sounds like; your ability to endure, including not becoming overly fatigued or even ill should you be exposed to something becomes more and more significant the longer the event).

    Part of Attributes are Secondary Characteristics, derived from the first four Attributes.; in real life, your Hit Points (I said it was an RPG XD) aren't going to matter barring misfortune (again, more on that later). The next two both are derived from Intelligence: Will and Perception. This isn't an animé, so Will is again about not having a deficit; this is the ability to martial what you actually do have and get the most out of it, but if your mental fortitude is weak, you risk being easily distracted or being easily intimidated or overwhelmed (by either other players or the situation). Perception is a huge part of games; this isn't about how people perceive you, but your ability to accurately notice what is happening. Do I honestly need to explain more for that? Fatigue Points in the game are measure of how much "energy" you have to do "stuff" and surprisingly matter quite a bit to long events, because once you run low you start getting penalties to perform. There are a few more, but really shouldn't matter to the average TCG tournament.

    Advantages are generally things that are inherent to you but that give you more options or capacity to do things. Note that being inherent doesn't mean they are internal; being Wealthy is an Advantage. Having the right Contacts and Allies are huge as well (people that can help you track down what you need, give advice, or help you practice). There are so many "traits" that fall under here, though many aren't going to matter a whole lot to a TCG. If there's something you can't put somewhere else, it probably belongs here or in Disadvantages. Extremely minor Advantages are known as Perks, and to a highly specialized thing like a hobby (TCGs), they can quite amazing.

    Disadvantages are anything that reduces your character's options or capacity. They don't have to be "bad" things either. Being Absent Minded is a pretty significant Disadvantage despite how innocuous it seems; for more your typical RPG fare it isn't good to know you forgot to bring your weapon to fight the baddies. For the TCG experience, forgetting to update your TecH or even your entire deck can easily take you out of the running. Somethings that are good are considered Disadvantages because they restrict what you can do (or do well), like following the rules: I hope we all have a Disadvantage that corresponds to that. ;) "Play Style" (the kind @baby_mario doesn't like) actually exists as a Disadvantage: it could be a Compulsive Behavior, Delusion (because it isn't really a thing), Odious Personal Habit or a Vow (because you insist you're going to play a certain way even though it doesn't work), or a few other options. Quirks are extremely minor Disadvantages and the counterpart to Perks; these will usually cause you issues but only in very restricted circumstances. Play Style (again, the baby_mario way) is usually a Quirk.

    Now we get to Skills. This reflects learned knowledge and experience (the two overlap to the point they are almost the same thing). "Skills" in GURPS can be quite broad, but getting into the details is a bit confusing (especially if you don't have experience with similar kinds of RPGs), so we'll focus on the "learned knowledge and experience". In GURPS (and most tabletop RPGs) you roll three six-sided dice to generate a number to compare to an Attribute or Skill (often a combination of the two) to do any action not considered so trivial (and unlikely to badly fail or succeed). GURPS deviates from the norm by having you roll equal to or less than your target number, so most of the time "high" = "bad". How Skills and Attributes work together is a bit complicated if we are actually trying to each you the game... but I'm not. Instead I am using this process to help understand how things tend to go in a tournament setting.

    Possessions were highlighted because Wealth is one of the odd things that can be an Advantage or a Disadvantage or neither. It is broken down into things like Wealth: Wealthy, Wealth: Comfortable, Wealth: Average, Weath: Poor, etc. with Wealth: Average being "free" to any character. However just having Wealth doesn't mean you'll have what you need to optimize your TCG performance, so I took a moment to highlight it. Owning even two copies of Tropical Beach is a very useful thing, as is owning your own car, fuel and insurance for that vehicle, etc. The thing is, sometimes something just isn't available in your area, either for any price or for the price it goes for elsewhere... and some people will distribute their available funds differently, prioritizing the TCG (sometimes to their detriment in all other areas of life) so again, worth highlighting separately.

    "Chance" always is a factor in life. Even if it isn't "chance" in the true sense, there are things simply outside the scope of our understanding or perception in addition to how sometimes we just seem to do something incorrectly. Luck of the draw, coin flips, pairings, etc. happen on top of subtle things like catching a cold the night before a tournament.

    If one is using GURPS to simulate the Pokémon TCG tournament experience in great detail, rolls against various Attributes and/or Skills are happening to see if you realize how you should prepare plus how well you actually do it should you realize it. The reason it isn't automatic is because of how varied the results can be realistically in addition to the impact it will have on your performance. The player that spent at least the last week eating well, exercising right, getting enough sleep, making sure they had things planned out well, including what to do when those plans fell apart may matter as much as analyzing and predicting the metagame and building a deck. If you don't know a player who hasn't performed as well as expected due to a sleepless night or the like... you probably have encountered such a player but they didn't want to admit it or didn't realize the cause. Sadly a lot of players use such things as an excuse, so being honest about it can be hard.

    After all the rolls preparing for the event, which reflected both knowledge and chance, the actually playing will involve several skill checks. Some players have Skills that will serve them well elsewhere, like knowing how to quickly take in and scrutinize the playing field, how to read a person's body language to get an idea of what they are feeling, etc. Obviously some players have skills meant purely to cheat, like sleight of hand to sneak in an extra card. Then there are the grey areas that are either legal but viewed poorly or illegal but almost impossible to prove. There is a certain degree of Intimidation that is tolerated; letting someone know how good you are (when you are indeed good enough for it to be Intimidating) but implying violence most definitely is not, for example. There is a definite "social" side to this game, and knowing how to be polite can put an opponent at ease... which may help you win, or may be less valuable than the "grey area" tactic of intentionally annoying them to provoke them to a mistake.

    Directly related to the game are things like Perception based rolls against your actual playing Skill, Intelligence based rolls against your playing skill, etc. Failing these badly are like when you miscount the number of a card in the discard pile, forget about a possible additional option (even a common one), etc. Your opponent is making all of these same rolls. Sometimes they are directly opposed; instead of checking to see if you did it "right", you're seeing who did it more right or less wrong.

    TL;DR: There is are many areas of chance and skill, as well as things best described as neither (capacity?) that need to be considered. Even if we want to abstract things as much as in earlier posts, things probably should be re-arranged.
    HighShroomish and Gelato like this.
  20. ninjapikachu

    ninjapikachu Not all that ninja-like tbh

    "10 percent luck, 20 percent skill. 15 percent concentrated power of will. 5 percent pleasure, 50 percent pain. And 100 percent reason to really really hate that matchup and why did my deck have to take a dump on me like that?!?!" :p
    More helpfully perhaps, maybe is it the matchups you're against? That could be chance, or it could be categorised as not predicting the meta well, though I think it leans towards the former.
    Then there's the deck: if its reliant on coin flips more than most that pushes the luck factor up. Or maybe it's something like lists or testing experience with the deck...
    Ugh, complicated!
    Not sure how I'd out it on a scale of percentages though.
    Like, you obviously need skills of strategy, rough probability calculation and observation in order to win, but that's all nothing if your deck suddenly decides to deal you nothing but Energy cards.
    But to a certain degree that ties into deck building, which IMO definitely falls under requiring experience to do well. But to another degree it completely doesn't, I recently had to face a regional drawing dead each game while my friend with the exact same list made top 8 in masters.
    And then there's stuff like topdecks, and obscenely fortunate opponents.
    So I'd kind of say that luck fills the sea so you can sail at all, but you then need your own ability to steer the boat across safely, assuming sea monsters (your opponent's t2 Blastoise perhaps?) don't interfere. If that makes sense :p