I can remember playing Pokemon Red and Blue to death on the DMG back in the day, so when it comes to picking the best starter in Pokemon FireRed & LeafGreen on the GBA, I guess you could call me an expert.
An expert that has played these games far too many times through his life so far, which probably means I need to get out more.
Throughout this article, I’ll be introducing you to the three different starters in Pokemon FireRed and LeafGreen, old favourites for those that have played this series from the says of the DMG.
You’ll also find a little bit out about each of them and, with any luck, agree with our choice on who is the best Pokemon to pick!
So, without further ado, it’s time to discover the best starter for Pokemon FireRed & LeafGreen and get battling your way to the top!
Table of Contents
Why Picking The Right Starter Is So Important
If you think that deciding what you want for dinner or choosing which song to put on as you begin your commute home is a hard choice, then you’ve clearly never played a Pokemon game.
Picking which critter is going to lead your team is one of the toughest decisions ever. This Pokemon is going to become your strongest fighter as you make your way through FireRed & LeafGreen, often getting you out of sticky situations and providing the final blow that gets you that all important badge.
Pokemon Red and Blue first introduced us to the concept of elemental moves being more effective against other creatures or, in some cases, just not effective at all. Those same problems transfer through onto the GBA with FireRed and LeafGreen, but who is the best fighter of them all, and which starter is best leading your team.
Let’s meet them and find out!
Having a shell really helps with Defence; that’s something we all learned in our list of the best Turtle Pokemon recently. And you know what, the fact that all three of Squirtle’s evolutions made it into this list really says a lot about how much of a great starter Pokemon it is.
Squirtle has 65 Defence, which is great for those early battles and is definitely going to make beating Brock’s Rock Pokemon in the first gym a heck of a lot easier. Especially because Water moves are super effective!
This tenacious turtle also makes Misty’s battle a lot more evenly matched, considering she also uses Water Pokemon, but it’s not going to be an easy fight. It’s going to be down to moves like Tackle to get ahead here and utilising your Pidgeys and Ratatas along the way,
Of course, Blastoise is an absolute mean machine, especially with moves like Hydro Pump making mincemeat of Blaine’s team later on in the game.
Bulbasaur is a weird little creature – weird, but incredibly cute.
I never really tend to go for Grass type Pokemon, even though Venasaur is on the front cover of the game and basically telling me to pick it.
That’s my own mistake, as Bulbasaur does incredibly well in the beginning of the game, proving useful against both Brock and Misty and proving strong against pretty much every trainer including the Elite 4 battles, excluding Blaine’s best Fire type Pokemon.
Moves like Solar Beam and Razor Leaf are always appreciated when getting out of a tight spot, as is Bulba’s 65 Sp. Attack and Defence.
Plus, it has a dual Poison type, meaning you can get your opponent’s health down gradually over time with a few choice moves!
Last up is my favourite OG Pokemon starter, the one and only Charmander.
Unfortunately, he’s not the best of the bunch and has a pretty tough time in the first two gyms. He’s super susceptible to ground, water, and rock types, meaning that a lot of the later gyms are going to have critters that can cause him a problem too.
He has the second best Sp. Attack behind Bulbasaur but rocks the best Speed stat out of everyone.
So, if getting that first hit is super important to you and you live setting things on fire (in the game, of course), then give Charmander a go!
Who Is The Best Starter In Pokemon FireRed & LeafGreen
Bulbasaur is the best starter in Pokemon FireRed & LeafGreen. Not only does it walk the first two gyms with ease, but it also has the best chance of making things easier for you the further you get through the games.
While Blastoise isn’t as weak against as may different types as Venasaur, Venasaur has more solid stats overall, bringing 100 Sp. Attack and Defence to the table.
Blastoise has better Sp. Defence and lower Sp. Attack, whereas Charizard ultimately ends up with higher Sp. Attack but lower Sp. Defence.
So, if you want to go hard on Defence in the later levels, go with Squirtle.
If you want to go hard on Attack as the game progresses but fancy a much tougher challenge, then go for Charmander.
But, if you want a solid all-rounder who can quell any challenge thrown at is, then go with Bulbasaur, the best starter in Pokemon FireRed & LeafGreen!
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Seb Santabarbara has bought every Nintendo console that has ever been released in his 33 years on Planet Earth. His favourite game franchise is Zelda, and he’s patiently waiting for Banjo-Kazooie to come back to the fold. When he’s not playing games, he’s travelling the world in his self-converted camper van.