Current state of GBL

This is gonna be a bit of a rant I guess:

Tonight it was the first time, after more than 1000 battles when I failed to win 3 or more GBL matches. I’ve lost about 150 rating in a single evening.

The fact that you can have hundreds of Pokemon potentially facing you, with no restriction is just insane. This should be a matter of skill and strategy, not about having your lead pokemon randomly counter the opponent’s lead or the other way around or the UI screwing you in the most vital moment.

The UI is so god damn awful. I dunno how many battles I’ve lost because it would either not register my switch or my switch button would pop up randomly.

So I want to see what’s your guys experience and what solutions you have to this, because the league is just unplayable in my opinion.

Personally, I believe that they should allow you to veto a pokemon type or at least a pokemon. If the opponent happens to have that type/pokemon, then he must pick another within 30 secs or something.

Also the UI should be updated in such a way that you have your two other pokemon on top of your screen, with their HP showing and NO POPUP BUTTON.


I’m struggling in UL as well. I’ve been stuck on rank 7.5 since GL. But I have finally established a decent team of Clefable, Hariyama, and Latios. The algorithm used against me is heavily based with Giratina, Togekiss, Swampert, and Venusaur. And my team is getting by most of the time.

One wrong move/switch and I am ruined. I really detest the ranking system of when you lose, you drop back to a lower rank. It has been quite a frustrating journey, so I completely understand what you’re going through.

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From my experience, the above are simply the most common picks, also known as “the meta”.

This would defeat the whole point of building teams with synergy.

What I would support is splitting each league into two sections, with legendaries and regionals banned in one section, but allowed in the other. This would be fairer because both players agree on the restrictions in advance.

My pet peeve is that the switch menu icons appear at the same place as the charge move icons. Trying and failing to fire off a charge move just before your Pokemon faints can thus lead to an accidental wrong switch.

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“Your opponent is about to send out *****. Do you want to switch Pokémon?” Yes/No + 12 seconds to decide and switch.

I feel that with moves like Charm, Razor Leaf or Confusion, it’s a must. Especially since currently fast moves deal damage while the switch is still animating, so you may faint before the opposing Pokémon is properly out.

First of all, you cannot drop in a rank, you remain at the rank, just your rating may fall drastically. At second, switching with sacrificial swaps and absorbing the damage is a part of the strategy so I disagree with all these warning notifications you suggest. In the history of competitive Pokemon you were never notifying the opponent that you will switch. I agree that some universal restrictions could be applied eg no Registeel or Deoxys-D for great league and as hkn stated afore, the switching button should not be that close to the charged moves.

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That’s a bit like saying that Tuberculosis is a part of life and there is no need for a vaccine. As for MSG PvP, there were also abilities and status effects that rendered a lot more Pokes viable and made way for a variety of strategies. Pretty much a different game.

Not a fan of banning Pokémon either. Right now it’s like “People are going to bring X, so I need to bring Y or at least Z”. How about, instead of erasing X from the alphabet, provide changes to let more letters in?

At least I’m with you on switch button. That’s some bad layout.

I’m actually okay with how it is now. It’s far from perfect and most likely will see improvement later, but as much as I get hard-countered, others get hard-countered by me too. Yesterday I went 4/5, 2/5, 1/5… and then I thought I was doing something wrong. But you know, then I went 5/5 and 5/5 again. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. And trust me there is some skill and strategy in it, such as building up energy advantages and having or giving up switch advantage. My only advice is that… have your lead being able to deal with Giratina-A, and have a Giratina-A counter in the back too (Snorlax, fairy, dragon). Because everyone has one

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Everybody and his brother may have one, but not everybody uses one… I don’t for one

My view is that there should be no warning notification, but fast moves should only start dealing damage after the switch animation is complete, so players have a fair chance to see the switched-in Pokemon and react accordingly. This would also reduce lag-related problems.

Sacrificial swaps and absorbing damage as part of strategy is very different from the issue described above. Here is an actual example of a sacrificial swap as strategy:

In a Great League match, I led with Azumarill and she led with A-Marowak. After a few Bubbles, she switched to Dewgong and shielded two Play Roughs, while I did not shield the Icy Winds. Azumarill fainted with Dewgong’s health in the red. I sent on A-Marowak and she switched to Registeel.

Then I switched to Venusaur. Guess why? I knew that Venusaur was weak to all three of her Pokemon, so if I used my A-Marowak to take down her Registeel (and Dewgong), I would lose the mirror match and then lose Venusaur. Hence I decided to sacrifice Venusaur to protect my A-Marowak.

Venusaur got off a Frenzy Plant and fainted with Registeel’s health at just above 50%. On comes my A-Marowak, which spams Fire Spins (and shields a Flash Cannon) until Registeel faints. Another two Fire Spins take out her Dewgong. Now for the final showdown: my A-Marowak versus her A-Marowak. All those Fire Spins built enough energy to immediately fire off two Bone Clubs (and then a third before her A-Marowak can fire off its first).

I still have a 1-0 shield advantage when her A-Marowak faints.


Man, by the time that Registeel died I would’ve already forgotten what their lead was lool

Hm, I do not get the tuberculosis example since I am saying a simple thing. If I count properly eg the lock-ons from registeel and do a swap to something that can absorb Flash Cannon better, then according to the standards that this game offers it is a strategy indeed. And if I lose from my opponent that did such a smart play, kudos to him. We will not see abilities in PoGo, I believe so for the rudimentals it offers I think it is fine. Yes, I agree that fast moves should do damage when both mons are on the terrain rather than before attacking so you just evaporate into the discard pile.

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I’m sorry but the fact that the same team that gets you a 5-0, can get you a 1-4 right after, shows that there’s something wrong with the format.

It means that, it fact, there is no such thing as a meta in the game, because, when you have an actual meta, the game is balanced by default and the only difference maker left is the player skill, which is what any competitive game should aim for.

I used to play League of Legends a lot. That game has an actual meta and the way the pick-ban system works, means that, while team A might counter team B on a certain lane, it will be the other way around on another lane so it all balances out. Plus, the game allows for a much better synergy between the champions within a team.

Just look at UL in GBL for instance. You either MUST have Giratina or MUST have a counter for Giratina, which, in the end, might ruin your synergy.

In theory, the most synergetic team you should be able to employ in GBL should be one made of fire-grass-and water starters since you basically got a triangle of pokemon covering eachother.

There’s no way you can employ that in in the Ultra League because they’d be weak to Giratina. I mean I literally led my GIratina into a guy who was trying such a team. Can’t remember exactly what his Pokemon were. He had a Venusaur, a Swampert and a Charizard I believe. I swear that my Giratina, using two shields, took down 2 of his Pokemon and left the 3rd with half health. This is just ridiculous and such cases prove that this game:

  1. has no actual meta (a flavor of the month Pokemon like GIratina-A is not meta)
  2. doesn’t allow for a good synergy between Pokemon, because of these flavor of the month Pokemon

The only league that is coming close to a meta is the Great League, but because of how huge the pokemon pool is over there, the randomness factor is actually larger than in the other two leagues.

So this is why I am convinced that the current fornat is utter dogshit and MUST be changed.

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So you’re saying you fought 1000 battles and only won 2? Dude, you should hang it up. :grinning:


You know what isn’t strategy? Playing multiple leagues and only winning 2-3 of 10-15 battles because you can’t even participate. For awhile it seemed like they fixed these issues but now their back. And it’s not my connection, I have no issues with any other part of the game and I sure as hell have no issues wayching my health drop in real time. I just cant attack back or will get 1 or 2 fast moves off for every 5 they use. Sometimes I think its a bug my opponent uses, ive seen them keep in terrible matchups like Charizard vs my Swampert and sweep me with it because I cant respond.

Also, on a less ranty note but something people touched on i agree needs to be changed asap, and thats the switch in animation. It is WORLDS unfair that when you switch there is a solid 3-5 second window where you dont have any clue whatsoever what youre up against. You can lose an entire battle because youre blind and cant respond in some cases, especially like the above cases where youre weak to razorleaf, confusion or charm. Those moves are so freaking overpowered because if you arent leading them and swap them in against something weak to those moves, your opponent loses 2/3s or sometimes ALL of their health before you even get to see what they sent in. Thats not strategic, thats exploitive and plain and simple not okay. Fighting blind isnt a strategy it’s a handicap


I mean that the switch mechanism is crap. You shouldn’t have that in a format so time sensitive, in a game so prone to lags. Building strategy on faulty design to me feels dirty, gimmicky and exploitative and I’m not saying this from a high horse. I’m doing this too, I just wish I didn’t have to.

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This joke is so bad and cringy that it literally left me speechless. Get lost, please.

Dude, it’s obviously meant to be humorous. So get on your computer, go to, and do a search on ‘sense of humor’. Buy one that seems reasonably priced, it will do you a world of good.

The rest of your post is spot on - I’ve lose several battles where the foe clearly didn’t have time to charge up something and used it against me. For example, last night I had Venusaur in, foe switched to Poliwrath (???), did a single quick attack, and hit me with an ice punch. And no, he didn’t have the Poliwrath in before.

Another time, leading with Venusaur, foe switched from Swampert to Giratina. I fully expected the immediate switch, and had my finger over the change button during the countdown. Foe switches instantly. I start tapping the switch button, nothing happens, and then I’m told I’m under attack, do I want to shield. I shield, because I need Venusaur to take out Swampert eventually, and then am allowed to switch to Clefable. After my switch, I freeze up again, until Giratina fires off another Dragon Claw (??? - this happened before Ancient Power got nerfed), I tank it, and then am finally allowed to attack. Two free attacks by the foe, costing me a shield, when I both went in with and switched to very favorable matchups. In the end, I lost that match for want of a shield at the end.

I was just funning on the way you said you fought 1000 battles, and the exact words you used made it should like you went 2-998. Clearly that isn’t the case, it’s just a little joke. Let it go.