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The setting for the competition
The Hoenn Grand Festival (Japanese: ホウエングランドフェスティバル Hoenn Grand Festival) is an anime-exclusive event during the Advanced Generation series. All Pokémon Coordinators who earn five Contest Ribbons from the Hoenn region are eligible to enter.
The competition is held in Slateport City. Contestants receive a guide book with maps of the stadium, tournament rules, and restaurant locations when registering. During the competition, Coordinators are housed in dorm rooms in small villages.
The Hoenn Grand Festival started in Hi Ho Silver Wind! and ended in Rhapsody in Drew. Like most Hoenn Pokémon Contests, Vivian Meridian is the announcer. During May's participation in the event, 247 participants were entered.
As seen in The Ribbon Cup Caper, Coordinators who qualify for the Grand Festival have the option of traveling to the competition venue aboard the S.S. St. Flower, a luxury cruise liner housing a restaurant, a shopping gallery, a game room, and a movie theater.
The Hoenn Grand Festival winner is awarded the Ribbon Cup and given the title of Top Coordinator. A party to celebrate all the contestants' hard work is held at the park after the award ceremony.
As per the event guide book, the Grand Festival always runs on the classic match format, being divided into preliminary matches and main competition matches. On the first day of the competition, all the Coordinators compete in the preliminary matches, but only 64 of them advance to the main competition matches.
Preliminary matches judges
The preliminary round of the Hoenn Grand Festival takes place on the appeal stage and is used to weed out less talented contestants before the main competition. In this round, Coordinators have their Pokémon performing only one move in order to impress the judges and the audience.
According to Vivian, striking the perfect balance between power and display is the key to achieve victory. Pokémon entrances, attack executions, and every aspect until the end of the performance must be done with maximum grace and power. Additionally, Coordinators are judged on how smoothly they interact with their Pokémon.
All the performances are awarded points by three unknown Contest judges, and the 64 top scoring Coordinators advance to the next stage.
Main competition matches
The main competition of the Hoenn Grand Festival takes place in the main arena. It is divided into two rounds and is judged by the Chief of the Pokémon Activities Committee, the President of the Pokémon Fan Club, and three Nurse Joy from the Hoenn region.
The first round on the main stage consists of single Pokémon performances with time limit to three minutes each. Much like in regular Pokémon Contests, Coordinators have their Pokémon using as many moves as necessary to create a dazzling presentation. The panel of judges evaluates each performance, scoring the contestants on a 100-point scale, and the 32 Coordinators with the highest scores move on to the next stage.
The second round on the main stage consists of Contest Battles, each with the five-minute time limit. The Contest computer pairs the Coordinators based on their scores, and all the battles are conducted in the Double Battle format. Contestants climb the tournament tree in single-elimination style. The Coordinator who wins the fifth and final stage of this round is declared the winner of the entire competition and receives Ribbon Cup.
Robert, the winner, with the Hoenn Ribbon Cup