Which starter should you choose in Pokémon Sword and Shield?

Which Pokémon Sword and Shield starter should you choose? - Grookey Dynamax
Which Pokémon Sword and Shield starter should you choose? - Grookey Dynamax

Unlike most other games, Pokémon games offer their toughest choice at the very start – which of the almost unbearably adorable starter Pokémon do you choose to join you on your journey? This tradition dates back to the earliest days of Pokémon Red and Blue, where we were forced to choose between Bulbasaur, Squirtle, and Charmander. Every mainline Pokémon RPG since then has presented a similar choice of Grass, Water, and Fire-type Pokémon, with Sword and Shield being no exception.

GameFreak haven’t made the choice easy for us this time, offering a choice between Grass-monkey Grookey, Water-reptile Sobble, and Fire-rabbit Scorbunny.

Pokémon Sword and Shield logo

Unlike most other games, Pokémon games offer their toughest choice at the very start – which of the almost unbearably adorable starter Pokémon do you choose to join you on your journey? This tradition dates back to the earliest days of Pokémon Red and Blue, where we were forced to choose between Bulbasaur, Squirtle, and Charmander. Every mainline Pokémon RPG since then has presented a similar choice of Grass, Water, and Fire-type Pokémon, with Sword and Shield being no exception.

GameFreak haven’t made the choice easy for us this time, offering a choice between Grass-monkey Grookey, Water-reptile Sobble, and Fire-rabbit Scorbunny.

Which should I choose?

If you’re new to Pokémon, you may be wondering if one Pokémon has any clear advantage over the other but all starter Pokémon are fairly balanced by design. Your rival trainer will always pick the starter who has the elemental advantage over your own, but by the time your rival is strong enough to pose a real challenge to you, you will have caught a few more monsters capable of facing your rival’s starter.

Each element has certain types that it is weak and strong against. For example, Scorbunny is a Fire-type, so has a natural advantage over Grass-types. You will likely encounter a lot of Grass-types in the early stages of the game, so if you want an easier ride through this part, then perhaps choose Scorbunny. But, be aware that whichever you choose, there will come a point where their weakness makes them a less viable pick, so building out a balanced squad is imperative.

So, to summarise, there’s no one right answer for which starter to pick. Your best bet is to pick whichever monster you like best and then focus on building out your party with Pokémon that make up for that starters’ weaknesses. With that being said, Grookey is the best boy.

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