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Weekly Article – Possibility of a Dual-type Starter Pokémon

Bulbasaur, the only dual-type base form starter alive
(Image by darkheroic)

Starter Pokémon are something of a special gift, because being the first Pokémon to start with, you would need their help to get through the game. Their ability to pull their weight makes them a reliable partner. With one exception, starters start with a mono-type, so any dual-types they might have would only be revealed after evolution. That starter that manages to avert this rule is, you guessed it, Bulbasaur. This brings us the interesting subject on whether there is a possibility of seeing a dual-type starter Pokémon again.

Here’s a reminder on what I mean by starter Pokémon: it is the base form among the evolution family, so the middle evolution and final evolutions are not what I meant. If you are ready to continue with this subject, please read on.


Before we reason on the probability of this possibility, we need to understand the benefits of a base starter of a dual-type. The biggest benefit with a dual-type Pokémon is the type itself. There are several reasons the type itself is a big allure to having another dual-type starter. For one, potential fans of other types would wind up liking that Pokémon, so if a hypothetical Fire starter is also an Electric-type, Electric-type fans would love this new Fire starter.

Dual-types are generally more useful than mono-types for their Same Type Attack Bonus, as that affects two types instead of one. Defensively, their new resistances also set them apart from the others. Even their movepool benefits from the dual-type, for they get moves the other type usually get, so this Fire/Electric starter would benefit from Thunderbolt, to strike Water-types with.

There is also the design aspect. Dual-types have a more varied design, because they need to accommodate their new type. As a result of this, their design choices could be fresher in comparison to the other. This is not necessarily saying that existing starters are similar, since every starter have a distinct look, despite sharing the same type. It is just that, a new type allows for extra possibility of a new type.

Dual type starters is one way to differentiate the way you start. Instead of the usual Grass/Fire/Water starters that you normally start with, a quest that immediate starts with Grass/Steel, Fire/Fairy and Water/Fighting (for example) would provide a different experience, at least at the beginning.

These are some of the reasons some people would be open to the possibility of another dual-type starter. However, there are reasons to believe it won’t happen, so it’s not necessarily that the designers purposely want to condemn the possibility.

The big factor that comes with the lack of dual-type starters is the mystique around them. Ever since Generation 2, we are not treated with more dual-types. We know this because the pre-release information said so (and it turned out to be true). From this information, we could infer that this would incite fans to bring in speculation, because we don’t know the final forms of the starters. In fact, every starter that was announced got fans into exercising their imaginations. Having an initial dual-type starter would narrow down the possibilities, though it’s not impossible that they could change mid-evolution.

Now you may be asking: in that case, why is Bulbasaur the exception? Well, considering that Bulbasaur is a Generation 1 starter, there isn’t necessarily hype around it. It was a time when Pokémon wasn’t a proven series, so the excitement level around those games weren’t the same as subsequent Generations. This could be why Bulbasaur is a really special case. To this day, a few fans are bugged that Bulbasaur intrudes the pattern of pure Grass-type starters.

Another reason we couldn’t expect dual-type starters is that the early starters are supposed to be starting out, so they aren’t as strong as their adult or full-evolved forms, just like how a child would only develop more features when they mature and reach adulthood. This goes in line with making it easy to understand type matchups early on. A mono-type’s type interactions are easier to understand than a dual-type, because when you understand how one type works, you could work out dual-types.

A minor reason that we won’t be seeing dual-type starters is to stay true to the original type configuration. If you have, say, a Grass/Dark, Fire/Fighting and Water/Psychic starter, would you call it a Grass/Fire/Water configuration or Dark/Fighting/Psychic configuration? I guess you use only the first type of them all, but it is possible that dual-type cycles could cause some confusion.


The possibility of a dual-type starter Pokémon is strong, since we have quite a few fans clamouring for this to happen again. If this couldn’t happen, I do not mind this because I appreciate the starters as they are designed, with the promise to be surprised later on (as was the case with Samurott and Chesnaught).

So readers, would you like to see dual-type starters for a change, or would it be best that Bulbasaur is left as the odd one out? I hope you enjoyed reading this article as much as I have writing it.

Thanks for reading.

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