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Every Starter Pokémon Ranked For VGC

All starters have returned in the new Pokemon Scarlet & Violet The Indigo Disc DLC. But which ones are actually usable in VGC? We break it down

Every official Pokémon journey starts with choosing your starter Pokémon and for many, this Pokémon is held close to their heart and is carried until the game is beaten. Since Pokémon Red and Blue, fans of the franchise have discussed which starter Pokémon is stronger, which is why today we have decided to rank all 27 starter Pokémon up until generation nine into tier lists, considering only their strength within VGC.

Tier S

Grookey in the Indigo Disc DLC


Grookey is, by far, the strongest starter Pokémon in this list and is worthy of the sole spot in tier S. With access to the 120-power STAB move Wood Hammer combined with his ability Overgrow, which boosts the power of Grass-type moves used by affected Pokémon by 50%, Grookey is able to deal absurds amount of damage for a starter Pokémon. Another characteristic that makes Grookey stand out from the pack is that he is one of the few who can learn the move Fake Out, one of the most dominant priority moves in the game.

Tier A


Chespin, Charmander, Cyndaquil, Scorbunny, Quaxly, Fuecoco, Sprigattito, Turtwig

In tier A you will find the starter Pokémon that are quite powerful when compared to the other names in the roster. These either contain strong moves that combine with their abilities or can offer great team support, an important characteristic in the VGC format.

An honorable mention from this list is Charmander. The OG fire-type Pokémon can become quite a threat if equipped with either the item Choice Scarf or Choice Specs while also being paired with a Pokémon that can set harsh sunlight. Have this set up, spam Heat Wave, and watch your opponents perish.

Tier B

Litten in the Indigo Disc DLC

Litten, Rowlet, Bulbasaur, Totodile, Froaki, Fennekin, Treecko, Snivy, Piplup, Torchic

Going down further into the B-tier starter Pokémon that are generally strong but less powerful than those in A-tier appear. Pokémon here usually have one highlight within their kit however they lack in other sectors making them significantly worse.

Having an ability such as Intimidate is already enough to boost Litten’s potential even if he is yet to acquire his final evolution, Incineroar, predominant features that make him the juggernaut he is known for in VGC.

Although small, another characteristic that can make these Pokémon shine is their base stat. As with all Pokémon, some of these starters have higher base stats than others which naturally makes them more suitable choices for higher ranks.

Tier C

Oshawott in the Indigo Disc DLC

Mudkip, Oshawott, Popplio, Sobble, Tepig, Squirtle, Chimchar

Starter Pokémon in the C-tier struggle to find situations where they can flourish. They usually don’t have a single attribute in their kit that makes them worth picking and, unfortunately, should be kept in your local Pokécenter PC while you try out the other names in VGC.

But hey, if you still want to try them out all the power to you. Many fun strategies can be used with Pokémon from this tier, such as a bulky Squirtle under the rain taking advantage of its ability Rain Dish or even Mudkip using the ability Damp while paired with a Pokémon that uses Explosion.

Tier D

Chikorita in the Indigo Disc DLC


Over the years Chikorita has gained notoriety not only for its unique design but also its more than underwhelming kit. Neither of Chikorita’s abilities is traditionally strong, combine that with a mediocre set of possible moves and you have a starter that just won’t do much even if in the right circumstances.