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Japanese Global Battle Union logo
The Global Battle Union (Japanese: グローバルバトルユニオンGlobal Battle Union), commonly shortened to GBU, is a part of the Pokémon Global Link that displays battle records from the Random Matchup Rating Mode in Pokémon Black and White.
In order to access the Global Battle Union, a player must have a Pokémon Global Link account. Rankings cannot even be seen without logging on to the site first.
Random Matchup can be accessed through the Global Terminal inside the Pokémon Centers. Players are given the option to choose the battle mode between Single Battle, Double Battle, Triple Battle, Rotation Battle, or Launcher Battle. The option for Free mode and Rating mode is then given, the latter of which is the concern of the Global Battle Union. Rating mode requires players to have Black and White game synched with a corresponding Global Link account. Players start out with a 1500 Rating that increases or decreases depending on the outcome of the battle. Players are more likely to battle other players of the same rating.
Selecting an avatar
Every season, once a player has completed ten Random Matchup Wi-Fibattles (ties and incomplete battles do not count) of any format, they are added into the rating system of the Global Battle Union. All players are rated according to the number of points that they have. The points are generally intended to account for the win-loss record of that player.
In addition to seeing the general ratings and points of other players, players can also view an "advanced" version of their own ratings by clicking a "details" button on the page. Ratings, along with other information, can be transferred when using another Nintendo DS console by transferring Wi-Fi Connection settings.
Besides being able to see the overall rankings of each player, ratings can also be filtered by battle format (Single, Double, Triple, Launcher, or Rotation Battles) as well as by location of the player.
Players that end a season rated in the top 100 of the overall ratings receive a special trophy avatar on the Global Link.
In Rating mode, players must follow a certain set of rules. Players who choose Free mode have the option to make use of these rules. The rules are subject to changes caused by the likes of glitches, world championships, overall balance, and unreleased Pokémon. For example, as mentioned in the games, the initial list of banned Pokémon only included the following: Pokémon Eggs, Mewtwo, Mew, Lugia, Ho-Oh, Celebi, Rayquaza, Jirachi, Deoxys, Chatot, Palkia, Giratina, Phione, Manaphy, Darkrai, Shaymin, Arceus, Victini, Reshiram, Zekrom, and Kyurem. The list of course excluded Keldeo, Meloetta, and Genesect as they were yet to be released. If a player has Pokémon Black and White Version 2, Therian Formes of Thunderus, Tornadus and Landurus are also not allowed since they can't be obtained in the Pokémon Black and White Version.
All Pokémon, items, moves, and Abilities unreleased or unobtainable legitimately during the duration of the battles under Random Matchup are also banned, but they are not specifically listed.
Every three months, the Global Battle Union ends a season on a Tuesday, and an extended maintenance session of the whole Pokémon Global Link is scheduled before the day of season interchange. The following day, a Wednesday, a new season will begin. Final rankings are released two to three weeks after a season ends. Once a new season starts, players start over with zero points.
Listed below are all of the Global Battle Union seasons that have been scheduled:
Season 1: April 13 to June 28, 2011
Season 2: June 29 to September 27, 2011
Season 3: September 28 to December 27, 2011
Season 4: December 28, 2011 to March 27, 2012
Season 5: March 28, 2012 to June 19, 2012
Season 6: June 20, 2012 to September 25, 2012
Season 7: September 26, 2012 to December 25, 2012
Season 8: December 26, 2012 to March 26, 2013
Season 9: March 27, 2013 to June 25, 2013
In addition to its ranking system, the Global Battle Union serves as the venue for tournament registration. A Digital Player ID is given after registering via the Battle Competition in the main menu of Pokémon Black and White. The Battle Box is used for the party to be used in the competition, which is then registered and locked. The Battle Box Pokémon (even the order of their moves) may not be changed while the competition is on-going. Choosing the Battle Competition option again will allow players to participate in battles for the competition. Players can only cancel participation via the Battle Competition option, not the Global Battle Union.
To date, the Battle Union has hosted the following competitions:
All Pokémon, items, moves, and Abilities unreleased or unobtainable legitimately during the duration of the battles under 2012 International Challenge are also banned, but they are not specifically listed.
All Pokémon, items, moves, and Abilities unreleased or unobtainable legitimately during the duration of the battles under 2013 International Challenge are also banned, but they are not specifically listed.