Pokémon: Top Six Fire Starters
* Rarely, you'll have access to only a single Pokémon, and it may not be one of the three traditional types. For example, the game Pokémon Yellow only lets you pick the Electric-type Pikachu.
No, silly, the article's title doesn't mean the six Pokémon most likely to start a fire. Although, now that you mention it, watch out for that. Rather, we're ranking the best Fire-type Pokémon for new Pokémon Trainers. In the Pokémon video games (and anime), whenever you begin an adventure, you select one of three* Pokémon to be your first companion. Traditionally, you choose from a Fire, Water, or Grass element Pokémon. No matter which category you select, your partner develops into a worthy ally, and will eventually evolve into more powerful forms. Today's countdown will revisit some classic monsters, and help you to decide which of these "starter" Pokémon would be most useful to you. We'll take into account factors such as evolutions, base stat totals, and movesets. Without further ado, let's countdown the six best beginning Fire Pokemon!
Pokedex species: Fire Pig
The Unova starter, Tepig, takes sixth place. If you play Pokémon Black or White, this little guy will be one of your choices. Sadly, he's not the best starter. He eventually turns into Pignite, then Emboar, which will be a dual Fire/Fighting Pokémon. This is a decent typing; it has more resistances than weaknesses, but Emboar is the third Fire/Fighting starter we've received in a row. Pokémon developers, give us something new. Additionally, Emboar has the lowest base stat total of any Fire starter's final evolution (528). He has high attack power, but low defense, low special (elemental) defense, and poor speed. Plus, his moveset isn't the best; many of the attacks he'll learn are powerful, but have mediocre accuracy and will hurt himself when they do hit. The Dark move Assurance is an exception, though, and recommended. There are other good Fire and Fighting types in Unova, so feel free to select the Water Oshawott or Grass Snivy as your starter instead.
Pokedex species: Fire Mouse
Next up, we have Cyndaquil from the Johto region. Pokémon Gold, Silver, and Crystal (plus their remakes) allow you to choose this fellow. He evolves into Quilava, then Typlosion, and takes no secondary type upon evolution. Cyndaquil's forms have good base stats, favoring special attack, defense, and speed. However, the attacks they learn aren't great; Typhlosion won't even learn any strong Fire-type attacks until level 43. Plus, without the use of TMs (devices to teach Pokémon new moves), Typlosion only has Fire and Normal attacks, which means that many Pokémon will have resistances to his moves. Okay, he does get the Rock move Rollout at level 61, but by then, you've either beaten the game or are close to doing so. In short, Cyndaquil and its evolved forms can be helpful, but make sure you teach them TM moves to expand their repertoire. For the Johto starters, pick the one that matches your playing style. If you prefer elemental attacks, choose Cyndaquil. Physical power, take the Water-type Totodile. Defenses, pick the Grass Chikorita.
Pokedex species: Chimp
I'm not sure why Sinnoh's Chimchar is classified as simply a chimp and not a 'Fire Chimp,' but hey, that's life. If you play Pokémon Diamond, Pearl, or Platinum, you can select this energetic partner. Chimchar will eventually morph into Monferno, then Infernape, a Fire and Fighting type. Infernape's stat total (534) is good; it favors speed, and has great physical and special attack. However, its defenses are a bit lacking, so try to use Infernape's high speed to strike first and strike hard. Infernape will, without TMs, learn Fire, Fighting, Dark, Flying, and Normal moves, giving it a wide range of techniques to pick from. So, would I recommend Chimchar as your Sinnoh starter? Hard to say. Consider that the Water starter, Piplup, will eventually turn into the awesome Water/Steel Empoleon, a great type combination that resists many attacks. However, Chimchar is one of the few Fire Pokémon in Sinnoh; you can find many Water types in the area. If you favor offense, give this chimp a try to watch as your opponents quickly lose.
Pokedex species: Chick
We'll give third place to Hoenn's Torchic. This little bird transforms into Combusken, then Blaziken as the original Fire/Fighting evolution. Blaziken's stats are similar to Emboar's; he favors physical attack. However, his defenses and speed are better, giving him more to work with. I like his moveset; he'll automatically learn some Fire, Fighting, Flying, and Normal moves. Blaziken has some decent combos to utilize. Use Focus Energy to increase your critical hit ratio, then hit with Slash or Blaze Kick, moves that also boost your critical chance, for a potentially deadly blow. Or, use Bulk Up to simultaneously raise your attack and defense. Blaziken's stat total is a bit lower (530) than a few others, but as of this writing, he's the first Pokémon on this list to have a Mega Evolution, a powerful fourth form granting new strategic options. All of the Hoenn starters are good Pokémon; Torchic may have an edge because it's one of the few Fire types in the area. If you play Pokémon Ruby, Emerald, or Sapphire, give him a try and see if you like his offensive onslaught.
Pokedex species: Fox
Second place goes to Fennekin, the Fire starter in Kalos and the Pokémon X and Y games. For better gender balance, we'll call the next Pokémon girls (the starters can all be of either gender). Not only do most people find Fennekin to be adorable, she's pretty strong, too. She'll ultimately morph into Braixen, then Delphox, a Fire/Psychic type. Delphox has more resistances than weaknesses, and a great stat total (534). I like the way her stats are spread around. Her lowest is physical attack, but this can be ignored by simply sticking to special attacks, which Delphox excels in. Her special defense and speed are also high. Fennekin and her forms lack a diverse moveset; they stick to Fire and Psychic attacks, but the attacks they do learn are accuarate and good at reducing your opponent's stats. Additionally, some useful supporting moves are learned, like the defensive Light Screen. As a breath of fresh air from all the Fire/Fighting types, and as a powerful companion, I'd definitely recommend this cute fox to Kalos players.
Pokedex species: Lizard
Yep, the very first fire starter wins first place. I'll admit I'm nostalgic about Charmander, but she's a strong ally, too. You can select her in Kanto, the land from Pokémon Red, Blue, and their remakes. Charmander evolves into Charmeleon, then Charizard. Charizard, despite looking like a dragon, is a Fire and Flying Pokémon. Yea, Pokémon sure has some weird typing. Still, the Flying addition is mostly useful. Fire Pokémon are weak to Ground moves, but Flying types negate Ground damage, so one of your weaknesses is nullified. Thus, Charizard has only three elemental vulnerabilities, while she resists damage from six types in addition to the Ground negation. This means she's strong defensively, and her high 534 base stat total favors special attack and speed, so she packs a punch, too. Charizard's moves are strong, and with a TM you can teach it the Grass type attack Solarbeam, so she can competently battle Water Pokémon. Plus, Charizard is one of very few Pokémon to have two Mega forms, Mega Charizard X and Y, granting more tactical options. Charmander players in Kanto may have a bit of a tough time starting off; the first two Pokémon Gyms use types that Charmander is weak against, but she'll pay off in the long run, and is the only good Fire Pokémon you can obtain for awhile. Give Charmander a shot and see what you think!
Which starter do you favor?See results without voting
I hope you enjoyed our ranking of the best Fire starters! By now, we've judged these starters. and have seen that some tend to fare a little better than others. However, if you particularly like one of them, then go ahead and choose it when you play through its game. They're all pretty strong, and sometimes it's funner to build a team of your favorite monsters than a team of the 'best" Pokémon. You can't go wrong with any of 'em. Let me know which of these creatures you favor, and I hope to see at our next Pokemon countdown!
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