The 2011-2012 video game championship rules have been posted on Pokemon.com. Of note is that most Legendary Pokemon have now been banned, aligning the official tournaments more with the rules used in online fan tournaments. The important parts of the documentation are below.
5. Standard Format Style
All sanctioned Pokémon video game tournaments require players to assemble a team of Pokémon, with items,
prior to the start of the event. The standard format style for all PLAY! Pokémon tournaments is Double Battle.
5.1. Double Battle
In Double Battles, each player selects four Pokémon from his or her party of six to battle with. At the
start of the battle, players send out the first two Pokémon in their party, making a total of four Pokémon
on the battlefield. Game play continues until a player knocks out all four of his or her opponent’s
6. Standard Team Construction Rules
When building a team for a PLAY! Pokémon tournament, all players must adhere to these standard construction
- A player’s team cannot contain two Pokémon with the same Pokédex number
- Each Pokémon on a player’s team can hold an item, though no two Pokémon may hold the same item
- A player’s team cannot contain two Pokémon with the same nickname
- A player’s team cannot contain a Pokémon nicknamed with the name of another Pokémon (for example,
an Unfezant named “Pidove”)
- Pokémon may only use moves that have been learned through one of the following methods:
- By leveling up
- By TM or HM
- As an Egg move, through breeding
- From a character in the game
- A move already known by a Pokémon received at an official Pokémon event or promotion
The Modified format is the standard tournament format for PLAY! Pokémon video game events. This format will be used at all premier events unless specified otherwise. The Modified format for the 2011–2012 season will use the following restrictions:
- Only Pokémon Black Version and Pokémon White Version Game Cards are permitted for use.
- Players may use Pokémon from the National Pokédex, from No. 001–646, that are caught in the
game, transferred from a previous Pokémon title, or received at an official event or distribution
- The following Pokémon may not be on a player’s team:
- 150 – Mewtwo
- 151 – Mew
- 249 – Lugia
- 250 – Ho-Oh
- 251 – Celebi
- 382 – Kyogre
- 383 – Groudon
- 384 – Rayquaza
- 385 – Jirachi
- 386 – Deoxys
- 483 – Dialga
- 484 – Palkia
- 487 – Giratina
- 489 – Phione
- 490 – Manaphy
- 491 – Darkrai
- 492 – Shaymin
- 493 – Arceus
- 494 – Victini
- 643 – Reshiram
- 644 – Zekrom
- 646 – Kyurem
- Pokémon must be placed in the Battle Box.
- Pokémon above level 50 are permitted, but they are auto-leveled down to 50 for the duration of battle.
- Players may use Pokémon with Hidden Abilities that have been officially released via Pokémon Black Version and Pokémon White Version, the Pokémon Global Link, or an official event or promotion.
- Pokémon may not know the moves Sky Drop or Dark Void.
- The Wonder Launcher cannot be used during battle.