Last week we planted the seeds of an idea in your mind, an idea that you’d like to see a brand new Pokemon based Top 10. Your decision has been logged, and we’ve gotten down and dirty trying to root out the best examples of grass type pokemon, based on style, popularity, and combat effectiveness. We aren’t going to judge for all of these points at the same time; We estimated how much we thought each of these Pokemon fit in one or more of the criteria and went from there.
Let us run down our prize turnips, our growers and climbers, our Top 10 Grass Type Pokemon.
Let’s get this list kicked off in the coolest way possible. The final form of the Gen IV grass type starter is a lumbering land mass on turtle legs, complete with stubby sapling. While he’s not high amongst the most memorable or effective of the starters, the imagery is iconic, evocative of classics like Venusaur, literary classics like Great A’Tuin, and the Groveback from Alien Planet.
The walking ecosystem towers above most people, supporting nests of smaller pokemon as it wanders the world, some live their entire lives from the a Torterra shell. There are ancient myths that suggest that the world is a massive Torterra wandering through the cosmos… sounds familiar.
First of all, Chikorita isn’t being entered in this list because of how competitive it is. I mean, certainly if you want to enter it into the Little Cup, it can hold its own, but it’s still not one of the best choices. Chikorita is in our list simply because it’s a very good design, even if a lot of people compare it to an avocado. It’s just adorable, but the stats it has is amongst the best of all of the grass type starter Pokemon.
It’d be far too easy to vote for all of the grass starters, because a lot of them are just that cool. We considered Rowlet too, however we felt that Chikorita had the overall edge in terms of competitive viability and popularity, along with just overall charm. It’s simply adorable and evolves into a very cool third-stage evolution in Meganium, who also almost made this list – But again, we didn’t want to fill this list with too many starters.
A huge player in the ice game, Abomnasnow has access to grass type moves, which makes it four times weak to fire. But don’t let that put you off this mon, as it’s got some serious moves which can take advantage of some special play. With Snow Warning as one of the most intrusive Pokemon Abilities possible, this Pokemon can change how a battle pans out for a couple of turns, bringing a hailstorm with it.
With hail coming down and plummeting on its opponents, it’s a competitive and strategic advantage. Combine this with Giga Drain for a little bit of survivability or give it Seed Bomb for a big bit of grass damage, Abomnasnow can really hurt its foes. It’s got some pretty cool stats and in all honesty, I think the typing is pretty cool. But then Mega Abomnasnow happened and things then got really scary.
What happens when Oddish evolves? It turns into Gloom and then into Vileplume. This bizarre little evolution line was quite sad to look at; a toxic group of grass/poison types, who were well received in gen 1, but were often looked at as second fiddle to much more powerful poison types, such as Weezing. Backing up a bit then, what happens when Oddish evolves? It turns into Gloom and then into… Bellossom?
If you give Gloom a Sun Stone instead of naturally evolving, it will turn into this adorably happy Bellossom. It brings the smile back onto the once smiling dot that we call Oddish. Bellossom isn’t a particularly impressive Pokemon, but it was a pretty early example of branching evolution lines, which made it a rather interesting Pokemon to get. But even this little fact wasn’t enough to save it from the fact that it was a pretty uncompetitive catch. Still, super cute and I’d love to have one here, just dancing away.
Little Nuzleaf makes the list on the back of its relation to the Nuzlocke playstyle, which seriously limits your ability to catch new pokemon and forces you to release a fainted pokemon, “Nuzlocke” stemming from an apparent resemblance to John Locke? I don’t see it myself, but there’s no doubt this little sprout looks awesome.
True to form of a dark type, Nuzleaf plays tunes that haunt people and scare them out of the forests where they dwell, and given their slightly tribal appearance it’s fairly easy to see how they’d freak out the unwary trespasser. A Nuzlocke run is a far more daunting prospect than actually encountering one of these little devils.
What is our purpose in the universe? What is life? What’s inside a tangela? The questions that will torment humanity until civilization collapses. This bundle of prehensile vines with a pair of wide and hopeful eyes was actually a surprisingly potent little fighter back in the early days of the game, as well as being an absolute nightmare to try and find, a trait it has brought with it to Pokemon Go.
Having gained a much bigger evolution, we considered Tangrowth for all of half a second before agreeing that the original is still the best. The medusa like sway of its vines are haunting, and it comes and goes leaving behind dazed and collapsed opponents to wonder, who was that cluster of vines? And where’d he get those shoes?
First of the grass-type legendary Pokemon and the Gen II equivalent of Mew, because it’s pretty much impossible to get without having been in the right place at the right time, Celebi is a time travelling sprite that leaves new plant growth in its wake. First seen as a guardian of the Ilex forest (great job kid, it’s still being turned to charcoal) where it has a small shrine, where it casts you into the past to watch your nemesis fight his dad.
Much like predecessor Mew, Celebi tends to get kidnapped for its special powers, time travel is really handy, and they can apparently use the power to resurrect their own dead, which raises some interesting questions, along with the weird eggs it leaves behind from the future. That has some serious “Back to the Future” connotations about their phylogeny.
What if I told you that nature and man-made steel could come together, forming one of the most deadly creatures in all of Pokemon? What if I could tell you that thorns and metal go together so well, that the Pokemon that is littered in them deal damage back to opponents who would attack it, equal to one eighth of their max hit points? Well, such a beast does exist and it’s called Ferrothorn – It’s one tough wall!
It’s one of the best hazard setters in the game, able to throw down either some spikes or stealth rocks, depending on how you want to play. It’s notoriously bulky, which when combined with leftovers makes for a perfect blend of survivability and damage. It’s able to even punish legendary Pokemon. I can only imagine how well this would play in a trick room set-up; as its speed is abysmal. Furthermore, much like Abomnasnow earlier, it suffers with that massive 4x weakness to fire. Other than that though, this is a solid choice which can fit in most competitive teams.
2) Alolan Exeggutor
Poetry in motion! A variation on the stumpy palm tree now has an elongated neck that raises most of the stupid-looking faces high above the crowd, leaving one down below to keep an eye on the ground. Both are born from the fairly standard exeggcute, the combined heads working psychically together, hence the psychic subtype.
So why on earth is Alolan Exeggutor a dragon? “It lost its reliance on psychic powers and awakened the sleeping dragon” WHAT? We’ve always wondered why a cluster of eggs could be plant type, but we suddenly have more questions than a pokedex entry can answer. And yet we will never stop loving those derpy grins.
We didn’t just cop out, there’s some method to our madness for picking Venusaur for the top spot. But let’s address the elephant in the room with this one; Venusaur got a massive boon for being a recognisable Pokemon from Gen 1. The popularity of Gen 1 alone does give it a significant edge in these Top 10s. You can argue Bulbasaur was more popular, but Venusaur is what everyone rushed to get. Plus, Venusaur was the boxart for both Pokemon Green and Pokemon LeafGreen.
So, what can this hulk do? Well, it first of all got a bit of an upgrade not too long ago, when it was able to Mega-Evolve. This gave it new life in competitive battling, to the point where this is a pretty common Pokemon to add to a team. It’s able to take a bruising and just slow down the pace of the game entirely, which is fitting when you look at the sheer enormity of it. Grass/Poison is no slouch in the defensive department, as once this beast turns Mega, you know you’ll be able to wall off a big portion of the game. Great resistances, good stats, a nice movepool and it’s damn Venusaur! We all love this Pokemon!
Though many of the members of our list are guaranteed evergreen, not all grass pokemon are good for all seasons. Much like Vine these pokemon may come and go like a glorious flash, or may plod along wearily like a garden centre. Here we germinate our honourable mentions.
A cactus Pokemon – well I guess we’ve had worse. Cacturne is a really fun little concept of a Pokemon, but not really with the best execution. When you look at it, you’d be forgiven for thinking it was stationary, which it often is! It’s in fact known as the Scarecrow Pokemon, which I think is a missed opportunity to add in a brand new Pokemon around Halloween time of a Scarecrow, but hey ho, what do I know?
Cacturne has some good accessibility, but it’s not exactly the toughest Pokemon in the dex. It’s a Grass/Dark type, giving it access to some great moves, but it just doesn’t excel anywhere at all. With that in mind, it’s fair to say that it’s sorta just… There. But the good thing is, Cacturne has won our hearts, with it’s silly pointy spikey regions. We do love Cacturne, even if it’s always leaving us in prickly situations. Yeowch!
Trevenant vs. Gourgeist
This spectral duo couldn’t possibly be given a place to themselves but between them couldn’t be left out. Trevenant the haunted timber, and Gourgeist the jack o’lantern, a pair of grass/ghosts that don’t make for great combatants, but if you’re building a haunted forest you can’t really ask for much better.
Both are capable of administering terrible curses, Trevenant binds the souls of its victims to the forest if they harm the trees, Gourgeist bewitches those who hear its song, and yet they evolve from such pleasant little spectres. They are both capable of forcing other pokemon to gain an extra type, possibly opening up a new weakness, giving them an unusual quirk, but a potentially deadly one.
It’s been no small task, there aren’t as many grass type pokemon as you might think, but we’ve rotted out ten of our favourites. Before you leaf, we have a veritable bouquet of ideas for new ideas we’ve placed in this voting box down here. Do what thou wilt and cast a vote for next week’s Top 10.
Was your favourite on the list? Or have our choices left a thorn in your side? Do you think we got the order right, or did Venusaur not deserve the top spot? What about Pokemon like Tropius? Give us your thoughts in the comments section, or over on our Facebook, Twitter or Reddit page.