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Old 08-29-2018, 02:03 PM   #2
Talon87's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Lafayette, Indiana
Posts: 20,548
They've released the rules for VGC 2019. Copy-pasting from Trainer Tower:

Spoiler: show
VGC '19 (Generic)
  • To play VGC 2019, either of the following most be used:
    1. Pokemon Ultra Sun's or Pokemon Ultra Moon's VGC 2019 downloadable rules in Festival Plaza for the appropriate series, or
    2. When permitted, the appropriate series' VGC 2019 format on Pokemon Showdown
  • Species clause (No two Pokemon on a team may share a National Pokedex number)
  • Item clause (No two Pokemon on a team may share the same item)
  • Pokemon must have been obtained in Generation VII (display the black clover in the summary screen)
  • All Pokemon are allowed, excluding the banned Pokemon listed below and at most two of the restricted Pokemon listed below
  • Pokemon are autoleveled to level 50
  • A player's team cannot contain two Pokemon with the same nickname
  • A player's team cannot contain a Pokemon nicknamed with the name of another Pokemon (e.g. a Dhelmise nicknamed "Trevenant")
  • Pokemon may only use moves currently obtainable in Generation VII (e.g. Light Of Ruin Smeargle is disallowed)
The following Pokemon are disallowed in VGC 2019: Battle Bond Greninja, Mew, Celebi, Jirachi, Deoxys, Phione, Manaphy, Darkrai, Shaymin, Arceus, Victini, Keldeo, Meloetta, Genesect, Diancie, Hoopa, Volcanion, Magearna, Marshadow, and Zeraora

Up to two of these Pokemon are allowed per team in VGC 2019: Mewtwo, Lugia, Ho-Oh, Kyogre, Groudon, Rayquaza, Dialga, Palkia, Giratina, Reshiram, Zekrom, Kyurem, Xerneas, Yveltal, Zygarde, Cosmog, Cosmoem, Solgaleo, Lunala, and Necrozma

VGC '19 - Sun Series (September 4, 2018 - January 7, 2019)
  • The following items are disallowed: Red Orb, Blue Orb, all Z-crystals, and all Mega Stones.
  • The combination of Rayquaza + Dragon Ascent is disallowed.
VGC '19 - Moon Series (January 8, 2019 - April 1, 2019)
  • The following items are disallowed: Red Orb, Blue Orb, Ultranecrozium Z, and all Mega Stones.
  • The combination of Rayquaza + Dragon Ascent is disallowed.
VGC '19 - Ultra Series (April 2, 2019 - Worlds)
  • All released items and moves are legal.

As you can see, it's three different formats across the year. The autumn will be one format with the most restrictions, the winter a second format with fewer restrictions, and the spring & summer a third format with the fewest restrictions.

Personal thoughts:

Spoiler: show
I'm not a big fan of them splitting up the format like this. Hardercore players I imagine will complain about the shorter format lengths that interfere with getting proficient. Casual players, I imagine, will be disappointed to learn that they now have to make three different teams per season without cheating instead of just one. And then there's geography. Lots of players wait for VGC to come to their neck of the woods before they compete, because they can't afford to be flying or driving cross-country every three months. For example, someone who lives in Missouri might only ever attend the Winter Regional held near St. Louis and that's it for them. But now this year, you're splitting the format in three while keeping the number of events hosted locally the same. So now if someone can only attend St. Louis, they can only participate in the Winter '19 format -- even if they would have preferred to have built a team that was Worlds (Summer '19)-compatible.

But I also can see why they did this. After the introduction of the primals and Mega Rayquaza, it became very obvious to everyone what VGC 2019 was going to look like if TPCi stuck to their tradition of "every third year, we do the no-holds-except-for-mythicals format." Worlds was gonna be -- is still probably going to be -- nothing but Primal Groudons, Primal Kyogres, Mega Rayquazas, and Ultra Necrozmas running rampant. By creating the Fall '18 and Winter '19 formats that they have made, they've effectively banned players from using any of these four Pokémon -- and thereby given a chance to the other, lesser legendaries to compete.

Rather surprising that the Fall '18 format opts to not only ban mega stones and Hoenn orbs but also prohibits the use of Z-Crystals. For a season intended to promote SMUSUM, that seems like a really weird choice. Of course they're back by Winter, but still. That makes Fall '18 potentially the most interesting of the metas on the horizon. We'll see!
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