Comprehensive Contest Guide - Orignally written by Ket-Shi and editted by Feather Dancer

Contests are often confusing. After trying them, many people come up with more questions than answers...

Why am I getting so few Hearts?
What Pokémon can learn moves best for the contests?
Where can I find these Pokémon?
What are move combos?
What are your prizes for winning?
What's the deal with the paintings?
Where can I find the scarves and what do they do?
What stats are complimentary and opposing?

I'll be answering these questions and more! I'll be starting with what contests are.

What's a contest?
Contests are brand-new features in Ruby and Sapphire. There are five different divisions your Pokémon can enter in (Cool, Beauty, Cute, Smart, and Tough). First your Pokémon's looks are voted on by a crowd, then you have 5 rounds to use one of your four moves. Even normally useless moves can be great in Contests (Like Water Gun and Tackle). The Normal rank Contest Hall is located at Verdanturf, (where you must get your ticket so that you can participate in contests) the Super Rank at Fallarbor, the Hyper Rank at Slateport, and the Master Rank at Lilycove.

What are the rewards?
They're actually pretty small. Your winning Pokémon gets a Ribbon for each contest it wins, which does nothing... However, by doing exceptionally in contests, you can get your Pokémon's picture put in an art gallery! When you get five different pictures put in the art gallery, you get a Glass Ornament, and your Trainer Card earns a star.

How do I get a painting?
Win the Master Rank of any contest and do extremely well. After you win, an artist will walk up to you and present a picture. Accept his offer to put it in the art museum. You can only have one picture for each type of contest won, which means five total.

Stats
Stats determine how well your Pokémon does in the first part of the contest, where the competition's crowd examines all four Pokémon and votes for the most appealing. There are five different stats:

Cool: Red color. Its secondary stats are Tough and Beauty.
Beauty: Blue color. Its secondary stats are Cool and Cute.
Cute: Pink color. Its secondary stats are Beauty and Smart.
Smart: Green color. Its secondary stats are Tough and Cute.
Tough: Yellow color. Its secondary stats are Smart and Cool.

You can raise these stats by feeding your Pokémon Pokéblocks. There's a Pokéblock minigame in every Contest Hall. All you have to do in put in a berry and press A at the right time. Feed your Pokémon Pokéblocks that have the traits you want.

Using a move of the same type of contest you're in raises the crowd's excitement (Tough in Tough). Using a move of a secondary type of that type's contest doesn't effect the crowd (Using Beauty in Cool). Using an opposing type in a contest lowers the crowd's excitement (Smart in beauty). Keep in mind, this applies to the stats in judging too, so a Pokémon in a Tough contest with a high Cute rating won't get many votes...

What's a move combo?
Move combos are attacks that give extra points when used in the correct order. For example, if I use Rain Dance, then Water Gun, Water Gun will get double the hearts (8!). You can tell if a move can be comboed if the judge has a "!" mark over his head after you use the move. They're the most effective way to get points.

What are the scarves I've heard about?
There's a scarf for every respective stat (Red, Blue, Pink, Green, Yellow). To get them, head to Slateport City. The Head Director of the Pokémon fan club will give you a scarf if your lead Pokémon has a maxed-out stat (for example, if I show him a Blaziken with maxed out Coolness, he'll give me a Red Scarf). He'll give you one scarf of every color. Scarves, when equipped in a contest, make your Pokémon more appealing in their respective stat in the first round of the contest, and therefore earn you more votes.

What Pokémon do you recommend using?
I used Medicham for Beauty, Regirock/ice/steel for Tough, Dodrio for Cool, Pelipper for Cute, and Castform for Smart.
You can easily catch Medicham in Victory Road. Any Regi, though tough to catch, it great for Tough. Although you can catch Dodrio in the Safari Zone, I recommend raising a Doduo instead. You can occasionally find Pelippers when you're Surfing. You can get a free Castform from the Weather Center.

Recommended Movesets

Cool
Dodrio @Red Scarf
Peck
Drill Peck
Hyper Beam
(doesn't matter)

First use Peck, then Drill Peck, Peck, Drill Peck, and finish up with Hyper Beam. I'd advise raising your future champion as a Doduo first so that he learns Drill Peck earlier. You can buy Hyper Beam from the Lilycover Department Store.

Beauty
Medicham @Blue Scarf
Ice Punch
Fire Punch
Hyper Beam
(doesn't matter)

First use Ice Punch, then Fire Punch, Ice Punch, Fire Punch, then Hyper Beam. You need to use the Move Tutor in Fallarbor to learn Ice Punch and Fire Punch, which requires two Heart Scales. Steal them off of wild Luvdisc, which can be fished for around Ever Grande city with a Super Rod.

Cute
Pelipper @Pink Scarf
Water Sport
Water Gun
(doesn't matter)
(doesn't matter)

Use Water Sport, then Water Gun, Water Sport, Water Gun, and Water Sport. Alternately, you can use a Spheal with Rest and Snore. You need to use a couple Heart Scales to relearn Water Gun and Water Sport.

Smart
Castform @Green Scarf
Rain Dance
Weather Ball
(doesn't matter)
(doesn't matter)

Now the going gets a little tricky...use Rain Dance, then Weather Ball, Rain Dance, Weather Ball, then Rain Dance.

Tough
Regirock/ice/steel @Yellow Scarf
Curse
Superpower
Explosion
(doesn't matter)

This is my only moveset that doesn't rely on combos. Use Curse, then Superpower, Curse, Superpower, and finish with Explosion. You need to relearn Explosion, so get out another Heart Scale.


Also check out the main site for more information
http://www.serebii.net/games/contest.shtml