Pokemon Legends: Arceus Best Starters (Ranked)

Three great Pokemon...but which is the best?

Pokemon Legends: Arceus Best Starters (Ranked)

Pokemon Legends: Arceus is the most different of the Pokemon games, as it doesn’t follow the gym trainers to battle the reigning Pokemon master structure and it takes place in the distant past, when Pokemon were new and people were fearful of them, which can be comical when the tough characters are afraid of something as gentle as a caterpillar Bug type Pokemon who has wandered into their office.

In Legends: Arceus you play as someone from the present day who falls through a space time rift and is found by the professor of the Galaxy Clan. He campaigns for you to join his survey team and you are set a trial by the captain to prove yourself.

When you set out on your trial, you will be offered to choose between three pokemon: Rowlet, Oshawott, and Cyndaquill. Each has its own strengths and weaknesses but only one can be the best starter and it will be part of your party for the remainder of the main story. Which is best? Read on to find out.


3) Rowlet

  • Stats:
  • HP: 68
  • Attack: 55
  • Defense: 55
  • Special Attack: 50
  • Special Defense: 50
  • Speed: 42

Rowlett is the slowest of the starters but he has the highest starting HP. On top of that his Attack and Defense are evenly distributed as are his Special Attack and Special Defense. 

While all of the starters tend to be close in terms of stats, Rowlet is the Grass type of the three, as well as Flying type. While this should mean he has an extra boost that the other two starters don’t get, it is more of an issue when the game starts.  He’s not going to be great when fighting Fire type, Flying type or Electric Type. He’ll be good against Buizel in the first area but the rest will put him most likely at a disadvantage, especially should you accidentally wander over to where the Ponyta and Rapidash are living.

The starters all got new forms for their final Evolutions and Rowlet’s final evolution, Decidueye is not nearly as strong (or as cool, to be honest) as the other two. Also, Decidueye is annoyingly weak against many of the later game Pokemon. Rowlet is a cute owl, but beyond that he’s not going to be a strong choice for your starter Pokemon.


  • Will be good once you get to Cobalt Coastlands, where you are facing Water and Fighting type when you arrive, just make sure to have someone else in the line up who can handle Firepit Island
  • Has a wide range of moves between his Normal, Flying, and Grass Type Moves and when he evolves into Decidueye will also gain Fighting type moves.
  • Has the highest starting HP stat. What he lacks in the the other areas he makes up for in a high HP to last longer in battle


  • He is vulnerable to lots of attacks from early Pokemon you encounter.
  • He is very slow. Rowlet will rarely go first in battle. And his other stats don’t make up for Rowlet’s lack of speed.
  • Rowlet’s evolutionary line doesn’t match the power of the other two starters.


2) Oshawott


  • HP: 55
  • Attack: 55
  • Defense: 45
  • Special Attack: 63
  • Special Defense: 45
  • Speed: 45

Oshawott comes to you with stats that are more or less even across the board, but he does have an advantage with the Special Attack. He is also a bit slow but makes up for it with a high starting HP and a strong attack stat. However, Defense and Special Defense are bothlow.

Oshawott is a tough little guy and while he is at a serious disadvantage to Shinx, the first Electric type you will encounter, he does well against the other pokemon in the beginning area. . If you add a Shinx to your main party right from the start you will already have a good balance to your team.

His final evolution, Samurott, has also received an upgrade and will be a crucial part of your team in most parts of the main story.


  • Oshawott learns many of his strongest moves early. Aqua Jet and Water Pulse both come before Level 20.
  • He is good in most of the areas of the game, even in the Crimson Mirelands, where Water Type can be at a disadvantage, he is strong against the resident Rock and Ground Types.
  • His final evolution sees him also becoming Dark Type, allowing him to use the moves Ceaseless Edge and Dark Pulse and becoming a serious threat to both of the boss Pokemon you will be facing.


  • While he doesn’t have the lowest Defensive stat of the starters, he is also lacking in the Special Defense stat. Which means, in the early levels, if you don’t get your match ups correct he will be fainting a lot.
  • The Cobalt Coastands are mostly water types until you get to Firepit Island, meaning that you will have to make sure to have another Pokemon to fill in this gap here.
  • His final evolution is weak against several post main story line side quest Pokemon, so bear that in mind as a way to build your team.


1) Cyndaquil

  • Stats:
  • HP: 39
  • Attack: 52
  • Defense: 43
  • Special Attack: 60
  • Special Defense: 50
  • Speed 65

Cyndaquil is fast and has a strong Special Attack. That being said his HP is the lowest of the starters and his Defense is not great. He is down the middle in terms of Special Defense.

Cyndaquil is easily the best starter of Pokemon Legends: Arceus. He may have a low health stat but as long as you keep him clear of Buziel in the Obsidian Fieldlands (this can be avoided by catching Shinx or a grass type early on), he will be a very strong reliable partner.

Crimson Mirelands is where he will really shine, as the annoying Pokemon, Carnivine, will give him plenty of chances to show off his Fire Type moves. His final evolution, Typhlosion, got a boost with adding Ghost type to the already powerful Fire Type. Every phase of Cyndaquil’s evolution benefits the player in most of the game.


  • His high speed at the beginning of the game will make training him a bit easier, as he will get to go first more often in battles.
  • The areas where a Fire Type Pokemon, such as Cyndaquil, can excel are widespread in this game, making him a good Pokemon to have in every situation.
  • By adding Ghost Type to the mix, Typhlosion becomes a critical part of the end game team, especially if you haven’t been able to add any strong Ghost type to your party.


  • His low defense means that unless he can one-hit KO someone at the beginning of the game, he’s going to be easy to knock out. This can also become a problem later in the game, if you meet an Alpha who is high above your level.
  • The Cobalt Coastlands is going to be a pain so you will want to make sure you have a Grass or Electric type to pick up the slack
  • He takes a bit longer to learn his stronger moves. However once he does, he is unstoppable in correctly typed match ups. However, be careful to get the correct match types, as his low defense is an issue, as stated above.

An amateur gamer who was introduced to proper games by her husband, Erin now insists on combining her two of her favorite hobbies causing herself emotional turmoil and gaming.
Gamer Since: 2012
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Pokemon Violet and Stardew Valley
Top 3 Favorite Games:BioShock, To The Moon, Thomas Was Alone

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