Pokémon Firered & Leafgreen In-Game Tier Discussion

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What is an In-Game Tier List?

In-Game Tier Lists rank Pokémon by their performance throughout the main portion of the game -- for FRLG, the main portion is defined as ending at your first time becoming Champion. In-Game Tier Lists essentially give players a general overview of how you can expect a Pokémon to perform in-game with general regards to how quickly and effectively they get you through the story.


What are the tiers?

In this In-Game Tier List, due to the relatively smaller amount of available Pokémon compared to most other games in the main series; there will be six tiers -- S being reserved for the best of the best, and E reserved for Pokémon that have extremely little or no use at all.

- S-Tier
- A-Tier
- B-Tier
- C-Tier
- D-Tier
- E-Tier


How are Pokémon ranked?


Broken down, there are 5 important criteria to consider for a Pokémon's rank:-

Availability: At what point in the game can you find the Pokémon, and how rare are they? Essentially, the earlier in the game the Pokémon is and the easier they are to obtain, the better. The level the Pokémon comes at or a notable evolution level can also fall under this category; ie availability is considered even worse for a late-game Pokémon if it comes at a significantly lower level, or a Pokémon evolving extremely late would be considered a negative here.

Typing: To what degree does the Pokémon's typing match up against the wealth of in-game opponents? For instance, Psychic-types are considered great in Kanto due to the large amount of Poison-types and very few resists; but Grass-types are generally much less useful due to a lack of notable advantageous matchups past the early-game.

Stats: How well does the Pokémon damage opponents, outspeed them, and take hits? Naturally this is extremely important, and as you'd expect a Pokémon with higher stats that complement its role and typing will help its ranking. It should also be noted that for the purposes of in-game tiering, Pokémon with high speed and offensive prowess are considered the best as opposed to tanks, walls etc due to clearing battles much more quickly.

Movepool: Does the Pokémon have useful moves that work in tandem with their stats, typing and/or coverage? How easily can they obtain these moves, and in specific reference to TMs; is there any major cost to getting them and is there high competition for the move? In particular, Pokémon that require Game Corner TMs to work well would be considered heavily disadvantaged due to needing a lot of money to obtain them.

Major Battles: Is the Pokémon able to take on significantly more important and difficult battles? Your rival, Gym Leaders, Giovanni, the Elite Four and their Champion are all opponents that warrant attention based on how well your Pokémon can handle them. It is very notable if the Pokémon in question can get their way around very difficult fights such as Misty, Sabrina and Lance who would otherwise be a roadblock to your progress -- significantly less so than if the Pokémon is most capable of beating Team Rocket Grunts and Hikers.


These 5 criteria also make up the body of a Pokémon's write-up; which will take place after rankings have been decided. An example below:-



Name: Spearow

Availability: Spearow is a fairly common encounter first found on route 3 at levels 6-8; and is later available at many other places throughout the game. It is very easy to catch and is best caught either immediately on Route 3, or very soon after at Route 4 due to being found at levels 8-12. Spearow also has a notably very low requirement for its final evolution; reliably evolving at Level 20 around the time of Misty.

Typing: Spearow's Normal/Flying type gives it a decent dual STAB as well as a useful immunity to ground moves.

Stats: The Spearow family has pitiful Special Attack at 61 and fairly low bulk at 65/65/61; as such, its main role is using its 90 Attack and 100 Speed to quickly dispatch opponents.

Movepool: Spearow will immediately come with Peck and receive Fury Attack very soon after for its dual STAB at earlygame. These are very quickly replaced by TM43 Secret Power on Route 25 and TM40 Aerial Ace after beating Misty; and later still by TM27 Return near Lavender Town, HM02 Fly near Celadon City and Drill Peck at Level 40. Fearow unfortunately has no coverage to note of outside of TM47 Steel Wing from the Safari Zone, at which point in the game it will have very little use -- its main strength is in having a better Flying STAB than most flying-types in the game, with which it has a good neutral STAB for most of in-game.

Major Battles: Fearow's best matchups are naturally in Erika and Bruno with its type advantage; effortlessly sweeping the former and being capable of breaking through the bulk of Bruno's fighting types -- it will however not be able to OHKO or take a hit from his Machamp, while also not being able to do anything to his two Onix. Misty, Koga, Sabrina, Blaine, Giovanni, Agatha and Blue are all opponents that Fearow can fire off a strong neutral STAB against to knock out at least one Pokémon, and has a big advantage against certain individual team members (such as Blue's grass-type and Sabrina's Venomoth). Its glass cannon nature however means it is not very capable of taking a hit and if it can't outspeed the opposing Pokémon, the battle can easily go from risky to dangerous. Surge, Lorelei and Lance are all major battles it has a very disadvantageous performance in.

Additional Comments: Spearow has the option of holding off evolving until Level 25 to learn Aerial Ace naturally, but this is not recommended as Fearow's Secret Power is easily able to deal with anything Aerial Ace can before you can get your hands on TM40.



What is and isn't being tiered; & general guidelines

- A Pokémon is not tiered if:-
  • :mewtwo: It is exclusive to postgame or events: this goes for every single Pokémon in the Pokédex after Dragonite; including Mewtwo and Mew who are a postgame boss and an event respectively.
  • :crobat: It is an evolution exclusive to postgame -- for instance, Seadra and Golbat are completely fine; but their evolutions Kingdra and Crobat are unobtainable until the postgame and will not be considered.


- :haunter: :gengar: Pokémon with Trade Evolutions will have two separate entries, one entry for 'with trading' and one for 'without'. It is reasonable enough to assume someone will simply not have access to the means for trade evolution, especially for a 17-year old game on a 19-year old console that requires yet another piece of hardware for trading. This effectively means that we have separate entries for Kadabra, Alakazam, Machoke, Machamp, Graveler, Golem, Haunter and Gengar. In a similar vein, there are of course three separate entries for each of Eevee's evolutions.

- :mew: With the sole exception of Trade Evolutions, Trading is not allowed.

- :porygon: Naturally, glitches and hacks are not allowed either. Exploits such as the Infinite Nugget Bridge are technically excusable, but if it's too time-consuming it would simply be considered inefficient.

- :abra: :zubat: Pokémon within ranks are ordered alphabetically. This is meant as a general overview, so there is no ranking within ranks as that would get extremely finicky and subject very quickly.

- :eevee: We do not decide the tiering of a Pokémon based purely on if another outclasses it at its job. We rank Pokémon as individuals, so even if a Pokémon does the same job as another and is worse at that in every way than said other; that itself would not effect the ranking. (ie, Pikachu is a better Electric-Type than Jolteon, therefore instead of both being B Pikachu should remain in B and Jolteon should be E). This also applies to 'opportunity cost' of using a Pokémon when you have a choice of using one over others, such as starters -- Hitmonchan is not considered worse because it precludes you from using Hitmonlee; it is judged on its own terms.

- :pikachu: Following on from the last point, please try and be professional, reasoned and considered in your arguments.

- :blastoise: While there is naturally a lot of crossover and similarity between two things about beating Pokémon games quickly, efficient runs are not speedruns and should not be judged by the same metrics -- otherwise, the only thing on this list would be 1/3 HP Squirtle.

- :charizard: This isn't the place to talk about the games in general. Firered & Leafgreen is a fantastic remaster of Gen 1, and one of my favourite games in the series; hence part of why I wanted to do this! But general discussion is best served in other parts of Orange Islands.

- :venusaur: The rankings follow in the next couple posts; have fun and feel free to mercilessly beat me up if I have wrong opinions!
 
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- :alakazam: Abra (Trade)
- :jynx: Jynx
- :mr. mime: Mr. Mime


- :kadabra: Abra (No trade)
- :bulbasaur: Bulbasaur
- :hitmonlee: Hitmonlee
- :nidoran-m: Nidoran-M
- :snorlax: Snorlax
- :squirtle: Squirtle
- :staryu: Staryu
- :vaporeon: Vaporeon


- :articuno: Articuno
- :charmander: Charmander
- :clefairy: Clefairy
- :doduo: Doduo
- :electabuzz: Electabuzz
- :exeggcute: Exeggcute
- :gengar: Gastly (Trade)
- :golem: Geodude (Trade)
- :growlithe: Growlithe
- :pikachu: Pikachu
- :psyduck: Psyduck
- :lapras: Lapras
- :machamp: Machop (Trade)
- :magikarp: Magikarp
- :magnemite: Magnemite
- :mankey: Mankey
- :nidoran-f: Nidoran-F
- :slowpoke: Slowpoke
- :spearow: Spearow
- :tentacool: Tentacool
- :zapdos: Zapdos
 
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- :bellsprout: Bellsprout
- :caterpie: Caterpie
- :cubone: Cubone
- :diglett: Diglett
- :dratini: Dratini
- :drowzee: Drowzee
- :flareon: Flareon
- :haunter: Gastly (No trade)
- :graveler: Geodude (No trade)
- :goldeen: Goldeen
- :hitmonchan: Hitmonchan
- :horsea: Horsea
- :jolteon: Jolteon
- :krabby: Krabby
- :machoke: Machop (no trade)
- :meowth: Meowth
- :oddish: Oddish
- :pinsir: Pinsir
- :poliwag: Poliwag
- :sandshrew: Sandshrew
- :shellder: Shellder
- :tangela: Tangela
- :venonat: Venonat
- :voltorb: Voltorb


- :aerodactyl: Aerodactyl
- :ekans: Ekans
- :farfetch Farfetch'd
- :grimer: Grimer
- :jigglypuff: Jigglypuff
- :kangaskhan: Kangaskhan
- :koffing: Koffing
- :magmar: Magmar
- :moltres: Moltres
- :omanyte: Omanyte
- :paras: Paras
- :pidgey: Pidgey
- :ponyta: Ponyta
- :rattata: Rattata
- :rhyhorn: Rhyhorn
- :scyther: Scyther
- :seel: Seel
- :tauros: Tauros
- :vulpix: Vulpix
- :weedle: Weedle
- :zubat: Zubat


- :chansey: Chansey
- :ditto: Ditto
- :kabuto: Kabuto
- :lickitung: Lickitung
- :onix: Onix
- :porygon: Porygon
 
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Aaaand we are a-go, you may start posting now! A few potential discussion starters:-

- The Leafgreen-exclusive trade Nidoran-M, Mr. Nido; is by far the best version of Nidoran-M and between his boosted exp and fixed +atk nature and fantastic IVs, is what gets Nidoran-M in A-rank to begin with. As stated though, this is a trade exclusive to Leafgreen despite the species being available in both games. Does this warrant Nidoran-M getting two rankings, or should it just be noted in Additional Comments in the write-ups?

- How much should their late availability impact the Legendary Birds? In particular, does Zapdos have any business being as high as A despite it being such a powerhouse when it's only obtainable after Koga?

- Is C-Tier too large; should it be split up or is it fine the way it is? I feel there is a bit of a disparity between some of the Pokémon within the tier, but I'm undecided on whether it's enough to split the tier or just leave it the way it is. Furthermore, would anyone be interested in Tier Definitions? I feel they're all pretty self-explanatory from a glance but if enough people feel they would be helpful, I'd consider adding them.


Also I'm going to add in sprites for all the tiers soon enough; just a lot of work for right this moment
 

Ryota Mitarai

Shrektimus Prime
is a Tiering Contributoris a Contributor to Smogonis a Smogon Media Contributor
I want to say that I have used almost every single Pokemon in FRLG and can provide input on almost everything you want, with logs if you even need that (or I will just chime in from time to time). Obviously, I am not gonna comment on every single one right now, but you are always free to ask me for my opinion. However I do have some major comments:

- Squirtle has no place in S-tier. Hell, I think A is a bit overrating it. Wartortle period is just awful and I don't remember Blastoise being super awesome at the E4 either, but I'd need to check logs. My personal experience tells me Squirtle fits B perfectly.

- Charmander, likewise, has the same issue as Squirtle in that Charmeleon period is horrible. Charmeleon is also rather shaky for Erika, despite type advantage, because your strongest move by that time is Ember, unless you go out of your way to beat all trainers and obtain a Charizard, which I think might be pushing the line a bit too much. Regardless, Charmander and Squirtle should probs both be B

- Bulbasaur is, by far, the only starter I think deserves a tier higher than B, preferably A-tier. It has no problems taking on the first three Gym Leaders, Misty being the most notable one. Leech Seed + Sleep Powder + Secret Power also allows it to do well against Koga and Sabrina, although not in the most timely manner (also note that Sabrina's AI in FRLG is incredibly bad, to the point I once managed to sweep her with Machamp) and Giovanni is also an easy matchup (although even Golbat does well against him, so not the most convincing matchup). SunnyBeam also allows it to do well against Lorelei and Bruno, though Agatha and Lance are meh in terms of matchups. Regardless, Bulbasaur should not be in a lower tier than the other starters for sure

(note: I have no exact recollection of specifics for rival fights, as I need to check logs, but I dont think any additional details I remember will change my opinion)
- The Leafgreen-exclusive trade Nidoran-M, Mr. Nido; is by far the best version of Nidoran-M and between his boosted exp and fixed +atk nature and fantastic IVs, is what gets Nidoran-M in A-rank to begin with. As stated though, this is a trade exclusive to Leafgreen despite the species being available in both games. Does this warrant Nidoran-M getting two rankings, or should it just be noted in Additional Comments in the write-ups?
Depends. Would one get a tier higher than the original one? I have not used either trade version, so this is somewhat a legitimate question. If it's just a mere detail that is not enough to change its ranking in some way, the best thing is just merge them in one rank so there are less write-ups


- How much should their late availability impact the Legendary Birds? In particular, does Zapdos have any business being as high as A despite it being such a powerhouse when it's only obtainable after Koga?
Imo, Zapdos belongs to B. I noticed it has some issues, mainly against Giovanni. At the E4, it also has issues with Bruno's Onix, Agatha's level 58 Gengar and Lance as a whole (though it does destroy his Gyarados). I think even rival fights are not exact sweeps. I don't think it's the powerhouse it's being implied. Articuno in B is also good, I'd say Moltres should drop to D. Unless you fight Blaine extremely early (and you don't want to do that), you have it for... 1 Gym Leader, 1 rival, E4, and Champion fight. Not to mention it only works well if you have Sunny Day and Solar Beam, particularly against Giovanni and Lorelei.

- Is C-Tier too large; should it be split up or is it fine the way it is? I feel there is a bit of a disparity between some of the Pokémon within the tier, but I'm undecided on whether it's enough to split the tier or just leave it the way it is. Furthermore, would anyone be interested in Tier Definitions? I feel they're all pretty self-explanatory from a glance but if enough people feel they would be helpful, I'd consider adding them.
I don't think a tier being too large is an issue, in my honest opinion, if stuff is getting tiered properly. If tiering properly leads to a huge list in a certain tier, then it has to be accepted. And I am not a huge fan of splitting tiers into C-, C+, and etc., merely because it sets a precedence for splitting other tiers in the future. Tier definitions would be good for newcomers, in my opinion.

Again, I have logs to confirm my claims for some of the changes I mentioned, if you need them.
 

Texas Cloverleaf

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I've run pretty much everything in FireRed within the last year so let's see what we've got

- Bulbasaur is unquestionably the best starter. Sleep Powder+Leech Seed+Grass+Normal is broken

- I'd place Squirtle in A. It's not dominating at any stretch but it's just solid to good throughout the game. I don't agree with Ryota that the Wartortle (or Charmeleon) periods are particularly weak, just typical slowing after level 30. Definitely not S.

- Jolteon is vastly overrated and Flareon is heavily underrated. Jolteon is good at exactly one thing, using Thunderbolt and it's only okay at it. It's fraility and not-overwhelming power hold it back. Flareon in contrast is excellent. It's speed is more than fine for in-game purposes, and Shadow Ball runs off it's great Attack stat in this gen. Fire Blast/Return/Shadow Ball puts in a ton of work. Flareon in D is criminal, it should be in B in Jolteon's place, and Jolteon should be in C

- Diglett I think is too high. It's fantastic for the Surge fight but never anything better than okay after that. 80 vase attack is rough. Drop to C.

- Slowbro I think is A tier. It comes late and is a pain in the ass to train, HOWEVER, nothing in the game, Jynx included, handles the E4 as effectively. I had a run in the past where it straight up solo'd the entire E4 at Lv 50 with Surf/Ice Beam/Psychic/Calm Mind. B is fine of you penalize it for its negatives, but I think it's positives are so overwhelming that it justifies A.

- Hitmonchan is dog ass. Drop it to D.

- Horsea is horrendous and has no business being in C. As in Emerald it needs to be E or F tier

- Tauros is very good. Hard to get but a great performer. Reasonable argument for C

- Similar thing with Aerodactyl. So long as you save the Rock Slide tutor it puts in work in the end game. Reasonable argument for D.

- Onix isn't the *worst* thing. It's weak af but it was passable enough. I used it to level 50 in the same run as Parasect and I felt they were very comparable in their effectiveness.


Anything else seems reasonable
 
I've run pretty much everything in FireRed within the last year so let's see what we've got

- Bulbasaur is unquestionably the best starter. Sleep Powder+Leech Seed+Grass+Normal is broken

- I'd place Squirtle in A. It's not dominating at any stretch but it's just solid to good throughout the game. I don't agree with Ryota that the Wartortle (or Charmeleon) periods are particularly weak, just typical slowing after level 30. Definitely not S.

- Jolteon is vastly overrated and Flareon is heavily underrated. Jolteon is good at exactly one thing, using Thunderbolt and it's only okay at it. It's fraility and not-overwhelming power hold it back. Flareon in contrast is excellent. It's speed is more than fine for in-game purposes, and Shadow Ball runs off it's great Attack stat in this gen. Fire Blast/Return/Shadow Ball puts in a ton of work. Flareon in D is criminal, it should be in B in Jolteon's place, and Jolteon should be in C

- Diglett I think is too high. It's fantastic for the Surge fight but never anything better than okay after that. 80 vase attack is rough. Drop to C.

- Slowbro I think is A tier. It comes late and is a pain in the ass to train, HOWEVER, nothing in the game, Jynx included, handles the E4 as effectively. I had a run in the past where it straight up solo'd the entire E4 at Lv 50 with Surf/Ice Beam/Psychic/Calm Mind. B is fine of you penalize it for its negatives, but I think it's positives are so overwhelming that it justifies A.

- Hitmonchan is dog ass. Drop it to D.

- Horsea is horrendous and has no business being in C. As in Emerald it needs to be E or F tier

- Tauros is very good. Hard to get but a great performer. Reasonable argument for C

- Similar thing with Aerodactyl. So long as you save the Rock Slide tutor it puts in work in the end game. Reasonable argument for D.

- Onix isn't the *worst* thing. It's weak af but it was passable enough. I used it to level 50 in the same run as Parasect and I felt they were very comparable in their effectiveness.


Anything else seems reasonable
Wanna provide logs there? All we got is your word here, which doesn’t amount to much, and evidence speaks louder than that.
 

Texas Cloverleaf

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One question Kurona, do you consider it reasonable to consider EVs for Gastly specifically? Given the point where you acquire it is an area that allows for effective training for Gastly, grants almost exclusively SpA Evs, and has an on-site healing spot to boot, it's very easy to put a notable amount of SpA EVs into it while raising it, without ever going out of your way or acting unnaturally. Especially if you give it the Psychic TM, picked up on the way back from Celadon.
 

Texas Cloverleaf

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Wanna provide logs there? All we got is your word here, which doesn’t amount to much, and evidence speaks louder than that.
Logs are as easily fabricated as my word could be.

If you have a specific question about a specific claim, say so and I can explain further. Considering these events are over casual runs before this thread existed there are obviously no pre-existing logs, nor is it reasonable to assume them of anyone who is contributing to this thread at the immediate outset.


I'll also ask you to not question my integrity again. This is the second time you've done so, without provocation and against both my decade's worth of reputation on this site as well as my mountains of contributions to the RSE thread. I have no incentive to fabricate my experiences, nor any intention to do so.
 
- Squirtle has no place in S-tier. Hell, I think A is a bit overrating it. Wartortle period is just awful and I don't remember Blastoise being super awesome at the E4 either, but I'd need to check logs. My personal experience tells me Squirtle fits B perfectly.

- Charmander, likewise, has the same issue as Squirtle in that Charmeleon period is horrible. Charmeleon is also rather shaky for Erika, despite type advantage, because your strongest move by that time is Ember, unless you go out of your way to beat all trainers and obtain a Charizard, which I think might be pushing the line a bit too much. Regardless, Charmander and Squirtle should probs both be B

- Bulbasaur is, by far, the only starter I think deserves a tier higher than B, preferably A-tier. It has no problems taking on the first three Gym Leaders, Misty being the most notable one. Leech Seed + Sleep Powder + Secret Power also allows it to do well against Koga and Sabrina, although not in the most timely manner (also note that Sabrina's AI in FRLG is incredibly bad, to the point I once managed to sweep her with Machamp) and Giovanni is also an easy matchup (although even Golbat does well against him, so not the most convincing matchup). SunnyBeam also allows it to do well against Lorelei and Bruno, though Agatha and Lance are meh in terms of matchups. Regardless, Bulbasaur should not be in a lower tier than the other starters for sure
I have to strongly disagree here. I can see arguments for lowering Squirtle to A-tier, but there is never a point in the game it is bad or dead weight. Water-types in FRLG are very good in general with a massive wealth of neutral matchups that Water Pulse/Surf just wins against and a very considerable amount of positive matchups between a lot of rock-types and many late-game bosses. Squirtle is the archetypical Water-type here that ticks all those boxes and is available right at the start of the game; it's fast enough to outpace a lot of what you're going up against and what it isn't faster than it can easily take a hit from, and its movepool is always patched up whenever it's starting to look even slightly weak (Bite for Misty; then Water Pulse from Misty; Surf exactly when you need it). It naturally tears apart Brock, Blaine and Giovanni and can at worst contribute heavily to any boss fight that isn't Surge, Erika or Lorelei -- of which Surge is easily skippable for a while and Erika is possibly the easiest boss in the game. Squirtle in my runs consistently Water Gunned, Water Pulsed or Surfed to victory with very little in its way, with the only real investment needed being an Ice Beam pickup right before the E4.


Charmeleon likewise is able to start getting moves when things are starting to get dire -- right out of Mt. Moon when it's needing a decent move it can get Secret Power, while right before Rock Tunnel it can pick up either Dig or Brick Break (which also allow it a pretty decent performance vs Surge). Erika as said is a very easy boss that even Ember shouldn't have too much trouble against, but if it really feels like you can't beat her at that point then she's hardly a priority as Strength isn't needed until end-game and you can just go beat up Team Rocket. Heck, some runs I even ended up using Aerial Ace when I wasn't feeling too confident in Ember. Charmander's only real issue is earlygame, but once you're past Misty the ball just keeps on rolling until Charizard's beating up pretty much everything.


Bulbasaur I've never been able to get to work outside of earlygame bosses. Statuses are very unreliable and slow and its power output outside of large-drawback moves is underwhelming to say the least. It always feels like it needs a lot more investment and a lot more power-ups and luck to work than more reliable options which is why I've placed it in B, but I can use it again to reconsider.

Depends. Would one get a tier higher than the original one? I have not used either trade version, so this is somewhat a legitimate question. If it's just a mere detail that is not enough to change its ranking in some way, the best thing is just merge them in one rank so there are less write-ups
Non-trade Nidoking is in my experience just a decent Pokémon that belongs in B -- as I said, boosted exp and guaranteed amazing stats do wonders for its viability which is why it's placed in A. Nidoking's in A for Mr. Nido.

Imo, Zapdos belongs to B. I noticed it has some issues, mainly against Giovanni. At the E4, it also has issues with Bruno's Onix, Agatha's level 58 Gengar and Lance as a whole (though it does destroy his Gyarados). I think even rival fights are not exact sweeps. I don't think it's the powerhouse it's being implied. Articuno in B is also good, I'd say Moltres should drop to D. Unless you fight Blaine extremely early (and you don't want to do that), you have it for... 1 Gym Leader, 1 rival, E4, and Champion fight. Not to mention it only works well if you have Sunny Day and Solar Beam, particularly against Giovanni and Lorelei.
I think all of that is very fair. Moltres I didn't want to rank too low because 125 spa STAB Flamethrower can still put in a lot of work, but how late-game it is really does impact that. Zapdos I also had a bit of bias behind I think; like you said it doesn't really put in that much work vs a lot of the remaining bosses.

- Jolteon is vastly overrated and Flareon is heavily underrated. Jolteon is good at exactly one thing, using Thunderbolt and it's only okay at it. It's fraility and not-overwhelming power hold it back. Flareon in contrast is excellent. It's speed is more than fine for in-game purposes, and Shadow Ball runs off it's great Attack stat in this gen. Fire Blast/Return/Shadow Ball puts in a ton of work. Flareon in D is criminal, it should be in B in Jolteon's place, and Jolteon should be in C

- Diglett I think is too high. It's fantastic for the Surge fight but never anything better than okay after that. 80 vase attack is rough. Drop to C.

- Slowbro I think is A tier. It comes late and is a pain in the ass to train, HOWEVER, nothing in the game, Jynx included, handles the E4 as effectively. I had a run in the past where it straight up solo'd the entire E4 at Lv 50 with Surf/Ice Beam/Psychic/Calm Mind. B is fine of you penalize it for its negatives, but I think it's positives are so overwhelming that it justifies A.

- Hitmonchan is dog ass. Drop it to D.

- Horsea is horrendous and has no business being in C. As in Emerald it needs to be E or F tier

- Tauros is very good. Hard to get but a great performer. Reasonable argument for C

- Similar thing with Aerodactyl. So long as you save the Rock Slide tutor it puts in work in the end game. Reasonable argument for D.

- Onix isn't the *worst* thing. It's weak af but it was passable enough. I used it to level 50 in the same run as Parasect and I felt they were very comparable in their effectiveness.
Just very quickly responding to these -- Jolteon I think is very fair and I think I will drop it to C. Compared to other Electrics it's just not bulky or versatile enough to compensate for its other shortcomings and a strong T-bolt is all it really has.

Diglett I can also agree on.

Slowbro I think is fair, though I'm a bit hesitant due to being both late-game and of course extremely slow. I've only done one run of it so I'd be interested in other opinions.

Hitmonchan... honestly, yeah, even the likes of Hypno and Magmar are better than it. Not actually sure why I put it there.

Horsea is a genuinely fine Water-type and a suggestion for E is ludicrous especially if you're saying Onix of all things deserves higher. As said Water is an extremely good type in Kanto, and as Seadra is a water-type with good SpA and Speed and instant access to Surf, it easily does work. Its performances against the Elite Four are middling at best to be fair but it still can handle a lot of the game. The main reason it's bottom tier in RSE is because it's very late-game, rare and low level for that; but in FRLG it comes at an alright time, level and rarity. For a decent water-type that's fine.

Tauros I can't comment on, I mostly put it for rarity's sake. If you've got more elaboration I would like to hear it for a tier rise consideration.

Aerodactyl is Level 5 at the end of the game. If it were even Level 30 I'd maybe think about putting it in D, but as-is, no, availability is so overwhelmingly negative that it overrides any other factor. Same for the fossils.

Can you explain further about Onix?

One question Kurona, do you consider it reasonable to consider EVs for Gastly specifically? Given the point where you acquire it is an area that allows for effective training for Gastly, grants almost exclusively SpA Evs, and has an on-site healing spot to boot, it's very easy to put a notable amount of SpA EVs into it while raising it, without ever going out of your way or acting unnaturally. Especially if you give it the Psychic TM, picked up on the way back from Celadon.
It depends on how much you feel makes it better. If it's something like 10-15 battles then whatever, but EV training to me sounds too much like inefficient grinding. Not sure why you're pointing out Gastly specifically though as this would be a point in favour of any specially offensive 'mon obtained around or after this time.
 

Ryota Mitarai

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I think Hitmonchan to D seems a bit exaggarated. I have used both Hitmons and they function pretty much the same way to the point they should just be in the same tier. Both just get the Bulk and Brick Break TMs and the Rock Slide and Mega Kick tutors. I can get my logs if you want me to, but my experience tells me neither of them is really bad and both perform quite well, actually.

Also, I do believe Wartortle and Charmeleon periods are bad, because you are stuck with weak STABs for a long time (granted) and this affects their route cleaning capabilities as well, making them a bit slow in that regards (read, not bad, but just slow), which is why I think B on all bar Bulbasaur is more appropriate

e: I posted this before seeing someone replied to me, so if anything feels off, lmk
 
I think Hitmonchan to D seems a bit exaggarated. I have used both Hitmons and they function pretty much the same way to the point they should just be in the same tier. Both just get the Bulk and Brick Break TMs and the Rock Slide and Mega Kick tutors. I can get my logs if you want me to, but my experience tells me neither of them is really bad and both perform quite well, actually.

Also, I do believe Wartortle and Charmeleon periods are bad, because you are stuck with weak STABs for a long time (granted) and this affects their route cleaning capabilities as well, making them a bit slow in that regards (read, not bad, but just slow), which is why I think B on all bar Bulbasaur is more appropriate

e: I posted this before seeing someone replied to me, so if anything feels off, lmk
I'd definitely like more elaboration on Hitmonchan if that's alright!


I think in regards to the starters, I really feel the point about their mid-game STABs is being overestimated. Especially for Squirtle this is basically a non-factor with Water Pulse being obtained immediately after Misty (which, if you're using Squirtle as your water-type then there's no opportunity cost), and Charmeleon's shortcomings I feel are made up very easily with a few TMs that there also isn't much opportunity cost on as you can just buy more later at Celadon. Route Cleaning I also feel should be considered, but shouldn't be so much of a factor as to make a whole rank difference when there's only a few places in the game it's particularly prevalent and for the starters there are some pretty easy patches. Charmeleon certainly felt a bit rough but nothing it couldn't get by; otherwise I can't say any of this speaks to my experience with the two.
 

Texas Cloverleaf

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It depends on how much you feel makes it better. If it's something like 10-15 battles then whatever, but EV training to me sounds too much like inefficient grinding. Not sure why you're pointing out Gastly specifically though as this would be a point in favour of any specially offensive 'mon obtained around or after this time.
I point out Gastly specifically because you would acquire it some 5-10 levels below the rest of your team. You would not be specifically EV training it, but training it to catch up at the particular point where it also achieves ideal EV growth. I would actually consider this a relevant consideration for Growlithe/Vulpix as well, similar availability/level situation, but obviously the special attack stat is the defining reason to use Haunter.

My argument against Horsea is primarily that it's stats are godawful, and that it evolves late. Seadra is fine but nothing special and I do not personally feel that it's adequate points outweigh the utter dead weight that Horsea offers.

Ryota perhaps your experience differed from mine but I found Hitmonchan to be terrible, failing to kill things and taking more hits than it should for it, even in spite if having taught it Bulk Up.

Re: Aerodactyl, the level 5 is definitely a reasonable reason to keep it in the bottom tier, I just think that it justifies the training investment put into it if you attempt to do so, which supports an argument for a slightly higher tier, certainly in a way that Kabuto and Omanyte do not (though Kabutops and Omastar are both very solid in their own right).

Re: Onix, I don't know that I'd specifically argue it for a rise, it feels very borderline to me between D and E. I just found that it wasn't as terrible as I expected and both it and Parasect were able to be functional enough to not hold back the rest of the team.

Re: Tauros, I'll hold off on it for fresh runs, my experience with it is a few years outdated



Will reiterate, Flareon in D is criminal, it's a very competent mon
 
I point out Gastly specifically because you would acquire it some 5-10 levels below the rest of your team. You would not be specifically EV training it, but training it to catch up at the particular point where it also achieves ideal EV growth. I would actually consider this a relevant consideration for Growlithe/Vulpix as well, similar availability/level situation, but obviously the special attack stat is the defining reason to use Haunter.

My argument against Horsea is primarily that it's stats are godawful, and that it evolves late. Seadra is fine but nothing special and I do not personally feel that it's adequate points outweigh the utter dead weight that Horsea offers.

Will reiterate, Flareon in D is criminal, it's a very competent mon
I think I see what you mean regarding Gastly -- if you're talking from the perspective of training it from the point you get it then you're talking about fighting the unskippable Channelers who all have Gastly/Haunter. I think that's a fair enough consideration then, but I'm not sure how much of a difference it would truly make.

Horsea it depends on what level you get it at it. This is a part that's a bit bleh to get into because fishing tables are unnecessarily complicated, but ultimately you can use the Super Rod (which you should be using because you get it at basically the same time if not easier than the Good Rod) to fish up a Horsea between levels 15 and 35 at VermilIon Harbour; and more commonly in Firered (almost half the Super Rod encounters). Now I admit I was pretty lucky in fishing up a high level one right away, but it should not take long to find one at a level where it's basically about to evolve.

Sorry for skipping over Flareon the first time; I can see C-tier, but B seems pretty high. I'd like more input and detail re boss matchups before considering that, especially when you're suggesting Shadow Ball is part of what makes it good which is a high-investment TM.
 

Ryota Mitarai

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here are logs for Hitmonchan. Note that I had taken it after beating Erika, so apologies for that:

Giovanni #1: sweeps easily, bonus points for being able to easily take out Kangaskhan
Blue at Pokemon Tower: managed to sweep everything up until Ivysaur (I had picked Squirtle there, funnily enough)
Blue at Silph Co.: this one is not good, I am gonna admit, as you take out only Growlithe and Venusaur, and the latter is only doable with 2-3 Bulk Ups
Giovanni #2: easy sweep here thanks to Bulk Up
Koga: +2 Mega Punch deals well against him, for most parts (funny I used Mega Punch when I said Mega Kick is likely better.... silly me in the past)
Sabrina: possible sweep due to her terrible AI, as it mostly spams Future Sight for... whatever reason
Blaine: 2 Bulk Ups and you beat everything bar Arcanine
Giovanni: Easy sweep, as pretty much anything that's usable at worst
Blue before Victory Road: not a good matchup again, you only beat Growlithe and Rhyhorn. Though you can aim for Pidgeot if you are willing to lose a lot of HP.
Lorelei: easy sweep with 2 Bulk Ups
Bruno: ^
Agatha: terrible
Lance: beats Dragonairs
Champion Blue: also bad here, you only beat Rhydon, if I recall correctly (for whatever reason, I do not have logs for this fight)


also, you just read Hitmonlee logs, per my experience. My point was mainly that Lee has the same pros and cons as Chan and I don't think they should be different tiers. Lee also needs two Bulk Ups in most fights and relies on Mega Punch and Kick not missing to win.

Also, I think Horsea in C is fine, in all honesty. It's pretty solid for most parts, though I did use Ice Beam in my run. Obviously, it's outclassed by a lot of Water-types, but I don't think Horsea is really bad
 

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Horsea it depends on what level you get it at it. This is a part that's a bit bleh to get into because fishing tables are unnecessarily complicated, but ultimately you can use the Super Rod (which you should be using because you get it at basically the same time if not easier than the Good Rod) to fish up a Horsea between levels 15 and 35 at VermilIon Harbour; and more commonly in Firered (almost half the Super Rod encounters). Now I admit I was pretty lucky in fishing up a high level one right away, but it should not take long to find one at a level where it's basically about to evolve.
This is probably a relevant consideration yeah, I'd never found one higher than 20ish. If you're getting it at level 35 that pretty much eliminates the downside I was giving consideration to.
 

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Sorry for skipping over Flareon the first time; I can see C-tier, but B seems pretty high. I'd like more input and detail re boss matchups before considering that, especially when you're suggesting Shadow Ball is part of what makes it good which is a high-investment TM.
Erika is free on evolution with the Fire Blast TM immediately accessible, Sabrina is free, 4 OHKOs and the bulk to take hits from Kadabra and Alakazam, though I don't think I've ever been outsped by Kadabra. Fire Blast will OHKO both of Koga's Koffing and comfortably 2HKO his wheezing, dying only to Selfdestruct. Muk is a 50/50 matchup. Blaine there's no real reason to use it but it can 1v1 rapidash or take out Growlithe and Ponyta if you want it to. Giovanni is an unfavorable matchup but it will outspeed and 2hko anything other than Dugtrio, so can be used to mop up. Lorelei it will handle Jynx easily and can beat Cloyster. Bruno it is neither favored nor disfavored. Does excellently against Agatha, having the special bulk and power to handle anything on her team. Lance is a no. Rival is generally solid, can manage Pidgeot if you want, and will destroy Exeggutor / Venusaur / Alakazam. Particularly valuable in the pre-E4 rival fight when CM Alakazam is otherwise a deadly opponent.
 

Ryota Mitarai

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Correct me if I am wrong, but isn't Fire Blast available only after beating Blaine? While you can sequence break and obtain it before fighting Erika and Silph Co., there's no way to use it against Koga, as you need his badge to use Surf in the overworld.
 
Erika is free on evolution with the Fire Blast TM immediately accessible, Sabrina is free, 4 OHKOs and the bulk to take hits from Kadabra and Alakazam, though I don't think I've ever been outsped by Kadabra. Fire Blast will OHKO both of Koga's Koffing and comfortably 2HKO his wheezing, dying only to Selfdestruct. Muk is a 50/50 matchup. Blaine there's no real reason to use it but it can 1v1 rapidash or take out Growlithe and Ponyta if you want it to. Giovanni is an unfavorable matchup but it will outspeed and 2hko anything other than Dugtrio, so can be used to mop up. Lorelei it will handle Jynx easily and can beat Cloyster. Bruno it is neither favored nor disfavored. Does excellently against Agatha, having the special bulk and power to handle anything on her team. Lance is a no. Rival is generally solid, can manage Pidgeot if you want, and will destroy Exeggutor / Venusaur / Alakazam. Particularly valuable in the pre-E4 rival fight when CM Alakazam is otherwise a deadly opponent.
Agatha and Sabrina are pretty big, fair enough; as is being able to take out Blue's 'Zam. Though, uh... where are you getting Fire Blast before Blaine?


here are logs for Hitmonchan. Note that I had taken it after beating Erika, so apologies for that:

Giovanni #1: sweeps easily, bonus points for being able to easily take out Kangaskhan
Blue at Pokemon Tower: managed to sweep everything up until Ivysaur (I had picked Squirtle there, funnily enough)
Blue at Silph Co.: this one is not good, I am gonna admit, as you take out only Growlithe and Venusaur, and the latter is only doable with 2-3 Bulk Ups
Giovanni #2: easy sweep here thanks to Bulk Up
Koga: +2 Mega Punch deals well against him, for most parts (funny I used Mega Punch when I said Mega Kick is likely better.... silly me in the past)
Sabrina: possible sweep due to her terrible AI, as it mostly spams Future Sight for... whatever reason
Blaine: 2 Bulk Ups and you beat everything bar Arcanine
Giovanni: Easy sweep, as pretty much anything that's usable at worst
Blue before Victory Road: not a good matchup again, you only beat Growlithe and Rhyhorn. Though you can aim for Pidgeot if you are willing to lose a lot of HP.
Lorelei: easy sweep with 2 Bulk Ups
Bruno: ^
Agatha: terrible
Lance: beats Dragonairs
Champion Blue: also bad here, you only beat Rhydon, if I recall correctly (for whatever reason, I do not have logs for this fight)


also, you just read Hitmonlee logs, per my experience. My point was mainly that Lee has the same pros and cons as Chan and I don't think they should be different tiers. Lee also needs two Bulk Ups in most fights and relies on Mega Punch and Kick not missing to win.

Also, I think Horsea in C is fine, in all honesty. It's pretty solid for most parts, though I did use Ice Beam in my run. Obviously, it's outclassed by a lot of Water-types, but I don't think Horsea is really bad
We must have very different experiences using Hitmonlee because I never really felt I had to use Bulk Up. For me it was just a good fighting-type glass cannon, though I'll freely admit I don't remember that much about using it. If we were to bring the Hitmons closer in tiers though, Lee's far superior attack and speed would make it at least one tier above every time. I can see B Lee and C Chan.
 
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My mistake I meant Flamethrower, I've never had an issue having one of the GC tms available immediately
It's not so much an issue getting one; you should be able to fork over enough money and nuggets at that point of the game to immediately have one -- but just one. That is a big investment for Flareon that should definitely be considered, especially if you're talking about getting Shadow Ball in time for Sabrina.
 
By the by, re moving Moltres down to D -- if I'm doing that I should probably do the same to Magmar, right? It's more or less the same availability aside from eating less Ultra Balls and it's worse than Moltres in every way
 

Ryota Mitarai

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By the by, re moving Moltres down to D -- if I'm doing that I should probably do the same to Magmar, right? It's more or less the same availability aside from eating less Ultra Balls and it's worse than Moltres in every way
I'd agree with that.

In order not to make this a one-liner, I think Ekans could rise to D (or C, but that may be a bit too high, so I am fine with D). It's not really great, I agree, but I used it with Secret Power and then Return + Hyper Beam + Screech and it actually did contribute some stuff. And Intmidate utility is never bad, either. I remember I also taught it Giga Drain, with which it managed to do something against Giovanni (need to check logs before giving more details), Blue's Rhyhorn family and Bruno's Onix. Overall, I think Ekans is not great, but it contributes enough to be somewhere in D-tier, at least.
 
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