The Instigator
Con (against)
1 Points
The Contender
Pro (for)
7 Points

Squirtle is the best starter to choose in Generation 1 Pokemon games

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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 5/11/2014 Category: Games
Updated: 7 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 6,711 times Debate No: 54471
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (5)
Votes (3)




This is a simply structured debate. My opponents job is to prove why Squirtle is the number one starter choice for playing any standard generation 1 game, such as Red, Blue, Green and Yellow. Other games, even ones that have Squirtle, Bulbasaur and Charmandar as the starters are not in the consideration. My job is to prove that either Bulbasaur or Charmander are superior choices.

The considerations for best pokemon to choose are as follows:

Building the best 6-pokemon team
Raw stats
Playability in early game (gym leaders 1-6) and in the late games (gym leaders 7-8 and elite 4)
Type advantages in battle

My opponent will begin his arguments in round 1, and neither of us can make arguments in round 4.


Grae and I have come to an understanding. He was allotting me and extra round of arguments, which I thought would be unfair.

For the first round we have agreed upon acceptance.

So i humbly accept this debate and wish my adversary good luck

if you wish to review this see the comments.
Debate Round No. 1


Okay then, I will now begin my arguments for why Bulbasaur and Charmander are better choices then squirtle for generation 1 games.

By the way, I'm not going to say, __________ and its evolved forms, every time. So when I say Charmander and am not referring to something specific to one stage of evolution, I mean all 3 stages.

I forgot to mention, while some people consider Gold/Silver/Crystal to be generation 1, they will not be considered, as the starters in these games are Cyndaquil, Chikorita and Totodile.

Now, the raw stats are not easily comparable for these pokemon. The reason being, is that at their second and third stages, their combined base states are exactly equal, at 325 and 425 total. Bulbasaur has a small advantage over the others in its first stage, having total base stats of 253, while Squirtle has 250 and Charmander has 249.

I find that squirtle is easily replaceable on the team. Just going by base stats, there are several other water pokemon that are not too difficult to get that are significantly better.

Gyarados, with total base stats of 480. It also has the benefit of being duel typed, (water and flying) and getting to use dragon rage. The earlier generations had few moves in general, and very few of them dragon, but dragon type moves are very powerful, and good to have, as few pokemon are ice type, so dragon type moves are usually good to have.

Water pokemon, like Squirtle, are weak against electric and grass moves, while get a defensive bonus against Fire, Ice and Water. I already explained the benefit of dragon moves, which makes Gyarados an even better choice, because it has the benefit of not being weak to ice. Garydos gains the benefit of not being weak to grass (normal effectiveness, because flying is x.5 and water is x2), and complete immunity to ground moves (special conditions that make ground moves hit are not present in gen 1) and gaining the added benefit of x.5 damage for fighting and bug. All in all, Garydos makes a better water pokemon to have on the team.

Another option for a water pokemon would be Poliwrath. Like Garydos, its earlier evolutionary stages are weak and common, but that just means that you can spend more time catching more of them, ensuring that you get the one with the best stats and nature. Like Garydos, Poliwrath is duel typed, being fighting and water. Fighting is always a good type to have, and with great moves like Mega Kick/Punch, Seismic Toss, Toxic and even Psychic, Poliwrath has a great moveset that encompass many types with high powers.

Bulbasaur is higher in almost all its stats except def. However, this does not matter as much. If you teach Bulbasaur sleep powder, poisonpowder and leech seed, it only needs one or two hits before the opponant is incapacitated and slowly losing health, while Venosaur gains it back, and it has decent health and a higher speed for this end. Not only that, but Garydos, Starmie and Tentecruel all have significantly higher speeds then Blastoise.

Not only that, but Charizard has incredibly high speed stats, with decent power, making it an ideal fast striker. Plus, since decent grass pokemon are rare, and the only other good non-legendary fire type (arcanine and growlithe) are so uncommon and cannot even be found in one of the games, it is important to get one of these types in your party without going crazy or expending a evolutionary stone of Victribell or Arcanine.

Note: While I did use pokedex from several different generations, I ensured only to use parts that remained the same throughout the generations, and use the earlier dex and references as they were available.


So I am going to hop into this right away. Squirtle is just not a better starter than charmander and bulbasaur but he is also far superior to them in the late game and even the meta in Gen 1 as far as in game fights. The main focus of this is about game playability so we are not focusing entirely on a meta 5v5 team but what pokemon is best suited to get you through the entire game. I almost feel like this will be Blastoise vs Venusaur because other than Charizard looking cool he offers nothing in the game or in a 5v5 team.

C1) How squirtle compares to other starters.

My adversary briefly touches on starter stats in one of his contentions, but that is entirely irrelevant to this discussion. What their stats are when they start and what they are when they evolve are two different things. Their level 1-16 stats are almost not even worth looking at because we are focusing on what they bring to the game as a whole.

I want you to notice what my adversary was pointing out and what I was mentioning

Lets review the starter stats vs the end game stats. I am going to reveal the average and total points rather than each point in each area.

Bulbasaur - total = 253 / average = 50.6
Charmander - total = 249 / average = 49.8
Squirtle - total = 250 / average = 50

Venusaur - total = 425 / average = 85
Charizard - total = 425 / average = 85
Blastoise - total = 425 / average = 85 [1]

So note my adversary is right when he says bulbasaur has a slightly better start with base stats, but as he also states this is a comparison about what they offer to the game as a whole. The starter stats dissipate after playing the game for 5 minutes so his contention about bulbasaur having higher base stats is a non sequitur.

Now when we look at their fully evolved forms, we can see all the stats are exactly even. So who has the highest stats at this point is a non factor since all the stats are distributed evenly among different categories like hp and speed. We have to look at who would win in versatility.

Let's review how a typical person would see a starter match up. Examine Red for example and his starter pokemon when he counter picks you.

Venusaur (grass) > Blastoise (water) but looses to Charizard (fire)
Blastoise (water ) > Charizard (fire) but looses to Venusaur (grass)
Charizard (fire ) > Venusaur (grass) but looses to Blastoise (water)

This is the typical idea of how a match would play out. They each have a counter. What this does not take into account is what abilities they can learn.

Blastoise can learn water, ice, ground, and normal attacks.

He is compatible with fissure (one shot ability gained from beating Geonvoani) [2]. He is also able to learn both blizzard and ice beam and can even learn hyper beam.

So when you review this it goes like this

Blastoise > Venusaur due to Ice Moves
Blastoise > Charizard due to Ice and Water Moves

Basically Blastoise can score super effective on both of the starters while they are only capable of scoring one.

C2) Versatility in Game

There was recent studies done to show that squirtle is the best starter all around from a versatility perspective. Meaning when you review each gym leader, their weaknesses, and what starter can score super effective or will be hit by super effective squirtle and his evolutions come out on top by far [3][4]

This essentially means that squirtle has a better chance of completing the game due to him being more effective against a majority of gym leaders and the elite four. This is not even contested because it is proven over and over again. View the chart above to confirm this. I also want to state this chart only shows this from a water perspective. It does not account in for squritles ice moves, if the chart accounted for ice moves he would have about 5 more super effectives added to the chart. Just with his base moves alone though, he comes out on top of the other starters. Add the ice elemental moves that he can learn and this is not even a fight.

C3) Ability to learn more HMS

This is also what makes Blastoise superior to his other starters. He can learn more HMS, more TMs, and more abilities in different elemental moves than both of them combined. He can learn things like Mega Punch, Ice moves, hyper beam, Water moves, Ground moves. His high ability pool and his compatibility with a vast amount of TMS makes him overly effective in most gym battles and helps him adapt to whom he is facing.


Because of his ability to learn a vast amount of TMs, His effectiveness against a vast majority of gym leaders and the elite four, and his ability to shut down and be super effective against both Venusaur and Charizard he is by far the best starter. He brings more to the table than his other two starters and you stand a chance at being more successful in beating the game. His ability pool and TM compatibility give him a vital edge in most battles. He is far superior to both other starters.

Having the ability to learn fissure is also a vital part in understanding Blastoise. If he comes against an adversary he is weak against, one fissure would be enough to knock them out of the battle. It is a gamble but still a one shot ability that can dispose of almost anything he is weak against. Then having Ice, Ground, Normal, and Water moves in his arsenal makes him a viable contender for almost anyone in the Gen 1 Games.

Debate Round No. 2


Okay, I'm going to be perfectly honest here. I have somewhat recently downloaded an emulator on my iTouch, and started playing old games (using new technology to play old technology). I started playing, and picked Squirtle out of interest, being the only starter besides Chikorita that I have never chosen. It worked really well. Much better then the other times I have played. You have convinced me. While all the starters are good choices, and I would still place Bulbasaur at number 2, at least for gen. 1, I have changed my opinion.


I would like to thank my adversary for his gracious concession and for the chance to debate this fun topic.
Debate Round No. 3


Lordgrae forfeited this round.


extend all
Debate Round No. 4
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by schachdame 7 years ago
I think Mikal won this way too fast. There were a lot of creative turns one could have taken. What a pitty ^^
Posted by Fanath 7 years ago
I'll debate this with Mikal if he wants to do the same debate topic.
Posted by Lordgrae 7 years ago
It would probably be better if you copied and pasted that in your round 1 if you can. If not, I will ensure that people who do not read the comments know you are not forfeiting your position.
Posted by Mikal 7 years ago
I am going to pass on the first round So I dont't have an extra one

Just going to say I accept
Posted by Lordgrae 7 years ago
Sorry. New arguments. Rebuttals are allowed in round 4
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by thett3 7 years ago
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Total points awarded:10 
Reasons for voting decision: S/G to Con because Mikal did not capitalize "i" in the first round.
Vote Placed by bladerunner060 7 years ago
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Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Con conceded. I'd give conduct for his gracious concession, except that he forfeited a round. As always, happy to clarify this RFD.
Vote Placed by Anonymous 7 years ago
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Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: FF

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