Pokémon Sword and Shield has been out for several months now and many of you are probably intimately acquainted with Gen 8 already. For those of you on the cusp of starting your adventure through the Galar region, though, you'll soon be faced with a question that every Pokémon trainer encounters at the beginning of a new generation: Which starter Pokémon should I choose?
The standard choice of Grass-, Fire- and Water-type starters is present and correct in Pokémon Sword and Shield. Indeed, Grookey, Scorbunny and Sobble were the very first Pokémon from the new game we glimpsed when the game was revealed.
But which is the best starter Pokémon in Pokémon Sword and Shield? A poll back in February 2019 revealed that Sobble was the most popular from appearance alone, but that was ages ago. If you're unsure which Pocket Monster you want to spend your time with, this guide should help you decide who to choose, including a sneaky look at the Pokémon that these three starters eventually evolve into.
We've separated spoilers onto different pages, so be warned that pages 2 and 3 feature the second and third forms of Grookey, Scorbunny and Sobble. Only visit those if you're happy to have the surprise spoiled!
You can also check out the entire Galar Pokédex or our Pokémon type chart for info on strengths and weaknesses, hunt out Easter Eggs in Pokémon Sword and Shield, find out how to find and evolve Galar region Pokémon from Sirfetch'd to Frosmoth, Alcremie and many more.
But now, let's get reacquainted with the starters we first met way back in February 2019...
Grookey is a little Grass-type monkey and is therefore weak against Bug-, Fire-, Flying-, Ice- and Poison-type Pokémon and moves. However, he is strong against Ground-, Rock- and Water-type Pokémon and moves.
He’s a cute little monkey - what’s not to like? Personally, we enjoy banging the drum for Grookey but his Fire-type rival is also tempting...
While you'll hardly find yourself stuck whichever starter you choose, picking Scorbunny will give you an advantage in the first gym in Pokémon Sword and Shield because, as you're probably aware, Fire- beats Grass- in the Pokémon world of Rock-Paper-Scissors.
Scorbunny is effective against Bug-, Fire-, Ice-, and Steel-type Pokémon and moves, although is weak against Water-, Rock- and Ground-type moves and 'mons.
Last but certainly not least, we have Water type Sobble. He might look a little gormless, but Water-type moves are effective against Fire-, Ground- and Rock-type Pokémon. Water types are not effective against Electric-, Grass- and Dragon-type Pokémon.
Sobble is inarguably the wettest starter here and he’s not overflowing with charisma, but his evolutions make up for that...
So, that's the initial forms of the three Pokémon Sword and Shield starters - the next page looks at each of their second forms. Spoilers ahead!