From Bulbapedia, the community-driven Pokémon encyclopedia.
Artwork featuring the player's starter Pokémon from Generations I
At the beginning of their quest, Trainers are given a starter Pokémon (Japanese: はじめてのポケモン Beginning Pokémon or 最初のポケモン first Pokémon; known as 御三家 the big three among Japanese fans). This Pokémon will be used to battle the first wild Pokémon that the Trainer encounters.
Once another Pokémon is caught, the starter Pokémon may be retired, but it is often with this Pokémon that Trainers learn friendship and trust. As such, even advanced Trainers may still use their starter Pokémon, and they will often be the most powerful Pokémon on their respective teams.
In the core series games, it is said that the starter Pokémon are extremely rare, giving the player a reason why the Pokémon not chosen can't be found in the wild.
In the games
In the core series games (with one exception), the player can choose a Fire-, Water-, or Grass-type starter Pokémon at level 5. At least one of the player's rivals will also always choose or have a starter Pokémon, typically the one that has a type advantage over the player's.
In Pokémon Red, Green, Blue, FireRed, and LeafGreen, Professor Oak will bring Trainers to his lab to give them one of the following to begin their journey:
The player's rival will then pick the type-advantageous starter Pokémon, and the remaining Pokémon will sit in its Poké Ball on Oak's desk for the rest of the game.
Professor Oak offers one of this trio of Pokémon to the player in Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver after the player has defeated Red, making reference to the fact that he gives them out as starter Pokémon in Kanto-based games, suggesting the player will be able to make it to the next town with one of these Pokémon by his or her side.
Professor Sycamore will let the player choose one of these three Pokémon after meeting him in person and beating his team of Kanto starters in battle. After making their choice, Professor Sycamore will give the player a Mega Stone corresponding to the chosen starter's final evolution; Venusaurite for Bulbasaur, Charizardite XX/Charizardite YY for Charmander, and Blastoisinite for Squirtle.
In Pokémon Yellow, due to being based on the anime, Oak instead gives out:
The Pikachu is the same one that attacked the player when they ventured onto Route 1 that Oak caught, which will be the only choice the player gets. During the adventure, the player will be able to get the original three Kanto starter Pokémon through special events not present in the earlier games. The Pikachu received from Oak will also refuse to evolve into Raichu by use of a Thunder Stone unless it is traded away to do so.
In Pokémon Gold, Silver, Crystal, HeartGold, and SoulSilver, Professor Elm will have an errand for the player to run, and will give them one of the following for protection on this errand, which they will then keep after completion:
After the player meets with Mr. Pokémon and receives a Pokédex from Professor Oak, Professor Elm will call the player to tell them that a thief has taken a Pokémon. As the player returns to New Bark Town, he or she will encounter the thief, who will have the stolen Pokémon with the type advantage over the player's own. From this point onward, the thief will be the player's rival, while Professor Elm keeps the Pokémon that was left behind by the thief on his desk for the remainder of the game (in HeartGold and SoulSilver, the last Pokémon mysteriously disappears at some point).
In Generation II, the Pokémon will be holding a Berry when received from Elm, though the rival's stolen starter Pokémon will not.
In Pokémon Emerald, after the player has caught all Pokémon in the Hoenn Pokédex with the exception of Jirachi and Deoxys, Professor Birch will offer one of these Pokémon as a reward.
In Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, after the player first enters the Hall of Fame and meets Zinnia, Professor Birch can be found being chased by a Shroomish on Route 101 and the player will be allowed to choose one of the Johto starters.
In Pokémon Sun and Moon, the Johto starters can be caught in the wild via Island Scan.
In Pokémon Ruby and Sapphire, Emerald, Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, after Professor Birch is rescued from a PoochyenaRSORAS or ZigzagoonE, he allows the player to keep the Pokémon they chose to rescue him with, either:
The player's neighbor, Brendan or May, already has his or her starter Pokémon, which is always the one with the type advantage. What happens to the starter not selected is unknown. By the end of the game, it seems that the player's nominal rival, the son/daughter of Professor Birch, has stopped being a Trainer, and Wally is actually the true rival, facing the player before he or she can leave Victory Road and staying there to rebattle the player later.
In Pokémon HeartGold and SoulSilver, Steven Stone offers one of these Pokémon to the player after he or she has defeated Red.
In Pokémon Diamond and Pearl, when two Starly attack the player and rival at Lake Verity, to which they travel upon hearing reports of a red Gyarados, they will choose one of the following from Professor Rowan's briefcase, which he left at the lake:
The player's friend and rival Barry will choose the starter Pokémon that has a type advantage against the player's choice, and the NPC who is the other-gender choice (Lucas/Dawn) will have the Pokémon weak to the player's choice, and therefore strong against Barry's. After fighting off the two Starly at the lake and returning the briefcase to Rowan, the professor will allow the player and Barry to keep the Pokémon they used.
In Pokémon Platinum, the player and the rival are stopped by Professor Rowan just as they are about to run through tall grass to get to Sandgem Town to ask the Professor for Pokémon. After some questions about the player and the rival's love for Pokémon, he decides to entrust them with one starter Pokémon each.
In Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, after the player enters the Hall of Fame for the second time, Professor Birch can be found being chased by his wife on Route 101 and the player will be allowed to choose one of the Sinnoh starters.
In Pokémon Black and White, Professor Juniper leaves a gift with the player's Mom in Nuvema Town to give to him or her, containing the following three Pokémon:
The player's friend Cheren will choose the Pokémon that is strong against the player's choice, while the player's other friend Bianca will choose the one weak to the player's choice. The choice of starter Pokémon affects which of the Gym Leaders of Striaton City will be battled; players who chose Snivy will face Chili, a Fire-type specialist, players who chose Tepig will face Cress, a Water-type specialist, and players who chose Oshawott will face Cilan, a Grass-type specialist. Also, the choice affects the Pokémon given to the player in the Dreamyard. Choosing Snivy gives the player a Panpour, Tepig a Pansage, and Oshawott a Pansear.
In Pokémon Black 2 and White 2, Bianca takes three starter Pokémon to Aspertia City on Professor Juniper's behalf and offers one of them to the player. The player's friend, Hugh, will have the Pokémon that is strong against the player's choice, having raised it from an Egg. The player character not chosen will have the starter that is weak to the player's choice, but only seen in its second form.
In Pokémon Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, after the Delta Episode is completed, Professor Birch can be found being chased by a Machoke on Route 101 and the player will be allowed to choose one of the Unova starters.
In Pokémon Sun and Moon, the Unova starters' final forms can be caught in the wild via Island Scan.
In Pokémon X and Y, the player, Shauna, and Serena/Calem receive their starter Pokémon in Aquacorde Town from Tierno, who was asked by Professor Sycamore to deliver them.
The player's friend Shauna will choose the Pokémon with a type disadvantage to the player's choice, while the player's other friend Serena/Calem will choose the one with a type advantage to the player's choice. The choice of starter Pokémon affects which Pokémon Shauna will trade with the player after the player enters in the Hall of Fame. Shauna will trade the unevolved form of her starter Pokémon, having received it as an Egg. The choice of starter Pokémon also determines which of the Legendary birds will roam the Kalos region after defeating the Pokémon League—if the player chooses Chespin, Articuno will appear, Zapdos will appear to those who chose Fennekin, and Moltres will appear to those that went with Froakie.
In Pokémon Sun and Moon, the player receives their starter Pokémon in Iki Town from Hala and Professor Kukui. The player's friend Hau will choose the Pokémon with a type disadvantage to the player's choice
Other in-game starters
Base stat comparison when fully evolved
Base stat comparison when Mega Evolved
In Pokémon Colosseum:
A first for the Pokémon games, these starter Pokémon come as a pair as to represent the Double Battle system, and are also different in that they are in the player's possession right at start of play. Umbreon is at level 26, knowing the TM moves Taunt and Snatch, as well as Bite which is otherwise only available through breeding at such a level. Espeon is at level 25, knowing the TM moves Return (while also starting with maximum friendship) and Reflect. Both are always male.
In Pokémon XD: Gale of Darkness:
This starter Pokémon is in the player's possession right at the beginning of the game. It is at level 10 and knows Bite, which Eevee does not normally know at this level without breeding. At an early point in the game, the player is offered one of five evolutionary items—Water Stone, Thunderstone, Fire Stone, Moon Shard, and Sun Shard—to allow the Eevee to evolve into any of its evolutions that existed in Generation III.
In Pokémon XD, if the player completes the Mt. Battle challenge and defeats all 100 Trainers without quitting or switching Pokémon, Battlus will give one of the Johto starter Pokémon as a reward.
In Pokémon Battle Revolution, the player's starter Pokémon are determined by the gender specified on their Rental Pass or Custom Pass. They are all at level 50.
Male players start out with the following Pokémon:
Female players start out with the following Pokémon:
In Pokémon GO, when the player starts the game Bulbasaur, Charmander and Squirtle will appear nearby. If the player battles and captures one of them, the others will disappear.
If the player walks away from them, they will reappear near their new location. If they do this four times, Pikachu will appear in addition to the Kanto starter Pokémon.
While not actually starter Pokémon, these are the first Pokémon available in each of these games.
Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series
- Main article: Player character → Pokémon Mystery Dungeon series
Pokémon Ranger series
- Main article: Partner Pokémon
Pokémon Rumble series
- Main article: Player character → Pokémon Rumble series
- Main article: Player character → PokéPark series
In Pokédex 3D, all players begin with these Pokémon.
In the anime
Upon their tenth birthday, youths can register for a Pokédex and pick up a starter Pokémon from the local Pokémon Professor or Pokémon Center free of charge. Starter Pokémon are usually raised specifically to be easy to train.
Like in the games, the specific starter Pokémon available vary from region to region, but are the same in each region as the games. That is, Kanto Trainers can only choose Bulbasaur, Charmander, or Squirtle, Johto Trainers can only choose Chikorita, Cyndaquil, or Totodile, and so on.
In A Mudkip Mission, it was shown where starter Pokémon come from. Each region has special, secret breeding grounds ran by a Pokémon Breeder for starter Pokémon. The Pokémon League sends these Breeders the Pokémon Eggs for them to hatch at the breeding grounds. The breeders then hatch, care for, and raise the young Pokémon until they are ready to be proper starter Pokémon for new Trainers. As these young ones are virtually defenseless, the locations of breeding grounds (or even the knowledge of their existence) is a secret unknown to most in the Pokémon world. This is likely to guard against unscrupulous individuals or groups (such as Team Rocket) from poaching the young Pokémon.
Other rookie Trainers may receive their first Pokémon from a friend or relative instead. Others, on the other hand, may befriend a Pokémon in the wild. These mean that Trainers can, in fact, start with any Pokémon.
A poster on Ash Ketchum's bedroom wall, depicting the Kanto starter Pokémon
The Hoenn starter Pokémon; owned by Brock, Ash, and May from left to right
A postcard from Professor Rowan, depicting the Sinnoh starter Pokémon
List of starter Pokémon in the anime
- Ash started with a Pikachu, which he received from Professor Oak.
- Brock started with an Onix, which he received from his father and who now belongs to his brother, Forrest, with whom it evolved into a Steelix.
- Misty started with Goldeen, Staryu, and Starmie; however, it's unknown how she got them or which one she acquired first.
- Gary started with a Squirtle, which he received from Professor Oak and who later evolved into a Blastoise.
- James started with his pet Growlithe, Growlie; however, he left it at home when he ran away.
- Jessie started with an Ekans, which she received for chūgen (a birthday present in the dub), and who later evolved into an Arbok.
- Sakura started with an Eevee, which later evolved into an Espeon.
- Casey started with a Chikorita, which she received from Professor Elm and who later evolved into a Meganium.
- Zackie (A Bout With Sprout) started with a Bellsprout, which he accidentally caught in Violet City when trying to catch Ash's Pikachu, which he thought was a wild Pokémon.
- Jimmy (The Legend of Thunder!) started with a Cyndaquil, which he received from Professor Elm and who later evolved into a Typhlosion.
- Marina started with a Totodile, which she received from Professor Elm and nicknamed Wani-Wani, and which later evolved into a Feraligatr.
- Vincent started with a Chikorita, which he received from Professor Elm and who later evolved into a Meganium.
- Harrison started with a Torchic, which he received from Professor Birch and who later evolved into a Blaziken.
- May started with a Torchic, which she received from Professor Birch and who later evolved into a Blaziken.
- Nicholai started with a Mudkip, which later evolved into a Marshtomp.
- Tommy started with a Mudkip, which later evolved into a Swampert.
- Stephanie (Having a Wailord of a Time) started with a Mudkip, which she received from Nurse Joy at the Slateport City Pokémon Center.
- Jimmy (Judgment Day!) started with a Squirtle, which later evolved into a Blastoise.
- Xander's (Caterpie's Big Dilemma) Caterpie was implied to be his starter Pokémon in the episode, as he mentioned that his Caterpie was his first Pokémon, albeit it was "not caught".
- Gilbert (Journey to the Starting Line!) started with a Bulbasaur, which he received from Professor Oak.
Dawn choosing Piplup as her starter
- Dawn started with a Piplup, which she received from Professor Rowan.
- Yuzo said that he started his Pokémon journey with a Starly.
- Paul started with a Turtwig, which later evolved into Torterra.
- Kenny started with a Piplup, which later evolved into an Empoleon.
- Tyler (Thief That Keeps on Thieving!) started with a Piplup, which he nicknamed "Pippy" who he received from an unknown location in eastern Sinnoh.
- Zoey started with a Glameow, which she raised after it was abandoned.
- Max intends to begin his journey with the Ralts, which he met in Do I Hear a Ralts?.
- Lyra started with a Chikorita.
- Khoury started with a Totodile, which later evolved into a Croconaw.
- Barry's first Pokémon is currently unknown, but it was hinted in Stopped in the Name of Love! that his first Pokémon might be his Empoleon, which he received as a Piplup.
- Volkner started with a Pikachu, which later evolved into a Raichu.
- Trip started with a Snivy, which he received from Professor Juniper, who later evolved into a Serperior.
- Iris started with a Drilbur, which she saved from falling off a cliff when she was a little girl, who later evolved into an Excadrill.
- Cilan started with a Pansage, which he has had since childhood.
- Bianca started with a Tepig, which later evolved into an Emboar.
- Emmy started with her Druddigon, which she received from her father when she started her journey.
- Virgil started with an Eevee, which later evolved into an Umbreon.
- Nanette started with a Tepig, which she received from Professor Juniper.
- Serena started with a Fennekin, which she received from Professor Sycamore, which has since evolved into Braixen.
- Mairin started with a Chespin, which she received from Professor Sycamore. She nicknamed it Chespie.
- Shauna started with a Bulbasaur, which she received from Professor Sycamore, which evolved into Ivysaur.
- Tierno started with a Squirtle, which he received from Professor Sycamore and later evolved into Blastoise.
- Trevor started with a Charmander, which he received from Professor Sycamore, which evolved into Charizard. It can Mega Evolve into a Mega Charizard Y.
- Sawyer started with a Treecko, which he received from Professor Birch and later evolved into Sceptile. It can Mega Evolve into a Mega Sceptile.
- Alain started with a Charmander, which he received from Professor Sycamore, and which evolved into Charizard. It can Mega Evolve into a Mega Charizard X.
- Lillie started with an Alolan Vulpix that hatched from an Egg. She nicknamed it Shiron.
Several characters have also caught Pokémon in the wild that are, in the games, only available as starter Pokémon.
- Ash caught a Bulbasaur, a Charmander, and a Squirtle in quick succession in the Kanto region. Of the three, only Charmander evolved, becoming a Charmeleon, and later a Charizard, both of which were very disobedient to Ash until an incident in the Orange Archipelago, after which it served Ash as it had when it was a Charmander. Bulbasaur was also going to evolve, but decided itself against becoming an Ivysaur in Bulbasaur's Mysterious Garden.
- Ash also captured the three Johto region starter Pokémon, Chikorita, Cyndaquil and Totodile, of which Chikorita and Cyndaquil evolved into Bayleef and Quilava respectively.
- Ash caught a Treecko in Hoenn, while Brock captured a Mudkip. Treecko evolved twice, becoming Sceptile before Ash left it at Professor Oak's lab, while Brock's Mudkip evolved into Marshtomp. Along with May's Torchic, the traveling trio had the three starter Pokémon of Hoenn.
- May caught a Bulbasaur midway through her journey in Hoenn, and was given a Squirtle by Professor Oak when she journeyed to Kanto. Bulbasaur evolved all the way into Venusaur and Squirtle evolved into Wartortle during May's travels through Johto.
- In Sinnoh, Ash repeated himself by catching Turtwig, which has since evolved into a Torterra. His rival, Paul owned a Chimchar that was confirmed to be caught in the wild. It was released, recaught by Ash, and is now an Infernape.
- Dawn hatched a Cyndaquil during her journey in Sinnoh. It later evolved into Quilava.
- Ash reused his pattern from the original series of catching all starter Pokémon in Unova: Oshawott, Tepig and Snivy. However this time around he caught them in reverse of the Pokédex order rather than following it as he did in the original series, and Oshawott was in fact a starter Pokémon that Professor Juniper allowed Ash to have after it ran away to be with him. Of the three, only Tepig has evolved, becoming a Pignite.
- Gary Oak had an Eevee at least since Ash was traveling in the Orange Archipelago. As it was revealed to be under his ownership before his Blastoise, it caused many to hearken back to Pokémon Yellow, where the player starts with Pikachu, like Ash, and the rival starts with Eevee. Either way, it was disproven that this was the case when Gary finally revealed his Blastoise to Ash. His Eevee eventually evolved into Umbreon.
- Ash caught a Froakie in Kalos, which used to belong to several other Trainers before being abandoned or abandoning the Trainer. It has since evolved into a Greninja.
- Clemont caught a Chespin in Kalos.
- Lana is revealed to have caught a Popplio in Alola.
- Ash caught a Rowlet in Alola.
In the manga
In the Be the Best! Pokémon B+W manga
The fully evolved Unova starter Pokémon in Be the Best! Pokémon B+W
Monta, Bianca, and Cheren received a Snivy, Oshawott, and Tepig respectively as their first Pokémon. They ended up evolving into their final stages later on.
In the Electric Tale of Pikachu manga
In The Electric Tale of Pikachu, unlike the anime from which the manga was based on, new Pokémon Trainers do not appear to be given any sort of starter Pokémon. Professor Oak is not shown residing at his laboratory handing out starter Pokémon to new Trainers, as in the anime, rather, he travels the Kanto region conducting research, often accompanied by Bill. Trainers in The Electric Tale of Pikachu must obtain a license before they can purchase Poké Balls or otherwise capture and train Pokémon. Ash found Pikachu under the floorboards of his home, keeping it as his first Pokémon. It is not currently known what Gary Oak's first Pokémon was in the manga.
In the Pokémon Adventures manga
In Pokémon Adventures, the starter Pokémon featured in the games are reserved for the few people who hold a Pokédex. Professor Oak produces three Pokédexes for each region, and gives out the three starter Pokémon in each region along with the Pokédex to Trainers he thinks are talented. He has colleagues and friends like Professor Birch do this for him in regions in which he isn't present. In the Unova region, two sets of starter Pokémon are given out to six Trainers, but still with only three Pokédexes. Professor Oak also gave Red's Pikachu as a special starter to Yellow.
Most characters in the manga do not start out with one of the Pokédex-related starter Pokémon. Instead, they usually have a Pokémon they were given by their parents when they were infants that they use as their starter Pokémon. Occasionally, it is not directly stated which Pokémon were their starter Pokémon in the manga, but in profiles of their teams, their starter Pokémon is marked with a star and is among the highest level in the party, even if they acquired more than one Pokémon at first.
List of starter Pokémon in Pokémon Adventures
- Red's first Pokémon was a Poliwag he had since his childhood, which has evolved into a Poliwrath. His "starter Pokémon" was a Bulbasaur given to him by Professor Oak, which he nicknamed "Saur". It became a Venusaur in his travels.
- Blue's first Pokémon was a Scyther, now a Scizor, he took to the training with Chuck. His "starter Pokémon" was a Charmander given to him by his grandfather, which evolved twice into a Charizard.
- Green's first Pokémon was a Jigglypuff, now a Wigglytuff, she received from the Masked Man. Her "starter Pokémon" was a Squirtle she stole from Professor Oak, which she nicknamed "Blasty". It later evolved into a Blastoise.
- Yellow's first Pokémon was a Rattata that Red caught for her, which has evolved into a Raticate. Later, she borrowed Red's Pikachu, and after Red took him back, caught her "starter Pokémon", a female Pikachu for herself which she nicknamed "Chuchu". Like the Pikachu in Yellow, neither evolved.
- Gold's first Pokémon was his Aipom, now an Ambipom, that his mother gave him. He borrowed his "starter Pokémon", a Cyndaquil, from Professor Elm, and was later allowed to keep the Cyndaquil which he nicknamed "Exbo". It later becomes a Typhlosion alongside the other two Johto starter Pokémon.
- Silver's first Pokémon was the Sneasel, now a Weavile, that Giovanni gave him as a child. He later stole his "starter Pokémon", a Totodile from Professor Elm, as well as the first Pokédex of Johto. His starter Pokémon evolved twice into a Feraligatr.
- Crystal's first Pokémon is officially her Smoochum, although she acquired many wild Pokémon that lived as a family while she was in the wild. Chikorita later ran away from Professor Elm to go with her, and became her "starter Pokémon" nicknamed "Megaree". It became a Meganium midway into their journey.
- Ruby's first Pokémon were the Ralts, Skitty and Poochyena that he received from his father, all of them having evolved into Gardevoir, Delcatty and Mightyena respectively. Later, he got his "starter Pokémon" from Professor Birch; a Mudkip which he nicknamed "Mumu". It evolved into a Swampert from the battles it underwent.
- Sapphire's first Pokémon was the Aron, now an Aggron her father gave her. Later, he gave her her "starter Pokémon", a Torchic, which she nicknamed "Chic". It has since evolved twice under its Trainer's care into a Blaziken.
- When Emerald arrived in the Battle Frontier, he had no Pokémon on hand. Then he challenged the Battle Factory using only rental Pokémon, nearly at the end of the challenge, he noticed something suspicious about a Sceptile so he decided to steal it from the facility and kept him afterwards, it is later is revealed that the Sceptile was supposed to be his in the first place, making it his "starter Pokémon". It evolved from its Grovyle stage in the wild, after evolving once in Wally's care.
- Diamond's first was his Munchlax, and later he received his "starter Pokémon", a Turtwig from Platinum because of a misunderstanding. It has since evolved to Torterra alongside the others.
- Pearl's first was his Chatot, and later he received his "starter Pokémon", a Chimchar from Platinum. The Chimchar has since evolved twice into an Infernape.
- Platinum's first Pokémon was her Ponyta, now a Rapidash, and later she received her "starter Pokémon", a Piplup from Professor Rowan. It has since become an Empoleon under her care.
- Black started with a Rufflet that he captured with the help of a wild Munna he had befriended, and later acquired his "starter Pokémon", a Tepig from Professor Juniper which later evolved into an Emboar. Initially it was nicknamed "Tep", but the nickname was changed to "Nite" and eventually "Bo", making Black the only main character so far to change his Pokémon's nickname.
- White's "starter Pokémon" was a Servine, which later evolved into a Serperior. This Servine, which White nicknamed "Amanda", was with N until Gigi, the Tepig that White employed, went to his side. It was later revealed that Amanda was a Snivy that was going to be given out to new Trainers by Professor Cedric Juniper, but was liberated by N.
- Blake's first known Pokémon is a Dewott.
- Whitley's first known Pokémon is a Foongus.
- X's first known Pokémon is a Kangaskhan. He later got a Chespin as his "starter Pokémon" after he accepted it as a member of his team. It has since become a Chesnaught under his care.
- Y's first known Pokémon is a Fletchling. She later got a Froakie as her "starter Pokémon" after she accepted it as a member of her team. It has since become a Greninja under her care.
- Sun's first known Pokémon is an Alolan Meowth. He is immediately shown as well with a Litten as his "starter Pokémon".
- Moon's first known Pokémon is a Rotom.
In the Pokémon Gold & Silver: The Golden Boys manga
In Pokémon Gold & Silver: The Golden Boys, much like in the Pokémon Gold and Silver video games on which the manga was based, Gold is offered the choice of one of the three Johto starter Pokémon - Chikorita, Cyndaquil or Totodile - to borrow so that he may run an errand for Professor Elm. Gold chooses Totodile, which Elm allows him to keep after the errand is completed. Also like in the games, Black, who is based on Silver, steals a Chikorita from Elm's lab while Gold is away on his errand.
In the Pokémon Pocket Monsters manga
In Pokémon Pocket Monsters, Professor Oak is depicted distributing the choice of one out of three starter Pokémon - Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle - to Pokémon Trainers as they begin their journeys, much like in other media. Green chooses Charmander as his starter Pokémon, and while Red was offered the choice as well, he decided to keep a Clefairy that he met on his way to Professor Oak's lab as his starter instead.
In the Pokémon Zensho manga
In Pokémon Zensho, much like in the Pokémon Red and Green games on which the manga was based, Professor Oak offers Satoshi and Shigeru their choice of one out of three starter Pokémon - Bulbasaur, Charmander or Squirtle. Satoshi chooses Charmander, while Shigeru chooses Squirtle, leaving Bulbasaur with Professor Oak.
- In interviews with Junichi Masuda during 2009, he stated that starter Pokémon are the Pokémon from each game that the most work goes into, and usually take significantly more time than other Pokémon in each generation.
- Two of the three Unova starter Pokémon, Snivy and Tepig, share the position of the starter Pokémon with the shortest name.
- The only two Starter Pokémon that are dual-type, Bulbasaur and Rowlet, are both Grass-type.
In the games
- All starter Pokémon in the core series besides Pikachu have a gender ratio of seven males to one female.
- Due to this, as well as the way in which gender and Shininess were determined, it was impossible to have a Shiny female starter Pokémon in Generation II, as the lowest Attack IV a Shiny Pokémon could have was 2, while the highest Attack IV a female Pokémon in that gender group could have was 1.
- The starter Pokémon from Generation I are the only ones to appear in more than one regional Pokédex. They appear in Kanto's, Johto's, and Kalos's.
- In the core series, when a starter Pokémon is first obtained, all are at level 5. Each knows one Normal-type physical move (either Tackle, Scratch or Pound) and a stat-altering status move at this level, except for Pikachu, which has Thunder Shock instead of a Normal-type move. This pattern is broken in X and Y when the starter at level 5 have both of these moves and one of their type.
- All Grass-type starter Pokémon have the Ability Overgrow, the Fire-type starters have Blaze, and the Water-type starters have Torrent. Starter Pokémon may have differing Hidden Abilities.
- Fennekin is the only unevolved starter Pokémon with unique base stat totals.
- The Pikachu in Pokémon Yellow is the only starter Pokémon that cannot evolve in the game in which it is a starter Pokémon.
- The Johto starter Pokémon are the only set of starter Pokémon that remain the same type in all their evolutionary forms.
- Charmander is the only Fire-type starter Pokémon that is not a member of the Field Egg Group.
- Oshawott is the only Water-type starter Pokémon that is not a member of the Water 1 Egg Group.
- The Kalos starter Pokémon's secondary types in their final forms (Fighting, Psychic, and Dark) almost form another type-advantage triangle (where one type deals 2× damage to and receives ½× damage from another type), only being broken by the Dark type being completely immune to rather than resistant to the Psychic type.
- Both the primary and secondary types, however, fit a more generally defined triangle that only requires one type to be offensively and defensively advantaged against another. For example, just as Water has the offensive and defensive advantage against Fire, so does Dark against Psychic.
In the anime
- For DP001, Professor Oak's Big Pokémon Encyclopedia is about the starter Pokémon of Sinnoh. He writes this senryū about them: 「シンオウで たびがはじまる ポケモンと」 "In Sinnoh, a journey begins with Pokémon."
- For BW003, Professor Oak's Pokémon Holo Caster is about the starter Pokémon of Unova. He writes this senryū about them: 「パートナー みず・くさ・ほのお まよっちゃう」 "Partner, Water, Grass, Fire, I can't decide."
- Ash has owned all but one of the Grass-type starter Pokémon: Bulbasaur, Chikorita, Treecko, Turtwig, Snivy and Rowlet. The Grass-type starter from Generation VI, Chespin, was instead owned by Clemont.
- Each Water-type starter Pokémon obtained by a main character was not battled: Ash's Squirtle, Oshawott and Froakie chose to join his team, while Ash fought and won against Misty for his Totodile. Brock did not battle Mudkip to obtain it. May received her Squirtle from Professor Oak, and Dawn received her Piplup from Professor Rowan.
- Charmander and Treecko are both based on lizards (salamander, gecko). Ash had the final forms of them: Charizard and Sceptile. Although real salamanders are amphibians, rather than lizards, Charmander can be based upon the legendary creature known as the Salamander.
- Squirtle and Turtwig are both based on turtles and were the starter Pokémon of two of Ash's rivals, Gary and Paul.
- Torchic and Piplup are both based on birds (chicken, penguin). They were also both owned by the anime's resident Pokémon Coordinators.
- Both May and Dawn have a second starter Pokémon from a previous generation with a type disadvantage to their first. These starter Pokémon are both from two generations prior to their owner's introduction, and featured in the anime likely due to the same-generation remakes.
- In the Diamond and Pearl series, there have been two major appearances of each fully evolved starter introduced in Generation IV: Ash and Paul's Torterra, Ash and Flint's Infernape, and Barry and Kenny's Empoleon.
- Froakie is the only Water-type starter that has ever evolved under Ash's ownership.
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