The Best Starter – Black & White

By Anonymous

Many of us Pokemon fans have fond memories of picking our first starter in Pokemon Red and Blue, not to mention the debate when comparing with our friends. Who was your favorite? Squirtle? Charmander? Bulbasaur? Well, whichever your choice, now that you’ve grown, you’ve likely wondered yet again which is the “best” starter. Now that Pokemon Black and White have come along, it seems Nintendo was nice enough to make it clear which is best for the story.

Stat-wise at least, all three starters have kept fairly even since the beginning, though are best tailored for different battling styles. Depending on what type of trainer you are, your aesthetic preference may be your strategic downfall. In generation V, the starters were designed so that the water type, Oshawott/Mijumaru, would be the best for special attacks, such as surf and waterfall; the fire type, Tepig/Pokabu, would excel in attack, which benefits moves like flare blitz and heat crash, as well as HP, sacrificing its remaining stats to have two proficiencies; and the grass type, Snivy/Tsutarja, would specialize in speed, so that it might strike first in battle. What’s an instance of choosing the wrong starter? Myself. I fell for Snivy at first sight, and have paid a heavy price. As I prefer my Pokemon to have strong attacks, I often lost battles when I fell back on Snivy to be my secret weapon. I, now, hate to say I despise him, now rotting in my PC. Choose your starter carefully, in any Pokemon game, and be aware of what you’re getting into, take it from someone who wishes she didn’t know!

In addition to what kind of starter you’re getting, it may help to know which Pokemon will make your game a cakewalk versus a rage-quit challenge. Those who have defeated the gyms may have noticed as they reflect on the game that many of the gyms’ specialty types were unfavorable to their choice of Tepig, the fire type. Given fire types are the Achilles heel of two of the gyms, and indifferent to four of the remaining ones, Tepig easily had the best move set and strengths for the game. However, if you were unfortunate enough to pick Snivy, which is also good for two but is weak to five of the gyms, then you have spent your fair share of hours grinding your remaining team members.

For the rest, who chose the otter, you were good for, again, two gyms, bad for three, and indifferent for the last three, making Oshawott the medium-difficulty choice starter. For those who like a challenge, I won’t question you when you choose Snivy. For those who choose Oshawott, expect me to take your side in debates over starters from here on. As for Tepig fans, I envy that pig of yours so much that I’ll be so kind as to trade you this Snivy for him.

Choosing your starter Pokemon is the first major choice you’ll make, next to your name for the sarcastic and clever ones out there, and a decision you should not take lightly. Remember, this is the start of the rest of your game, until you pick up one of the elemental monkeys in the Dreamyard and they cover most of your starter’s type weaknesses. By the way, be sure to pick one of those up for the first gym battle, you won’t be sorry!

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