It's a question that's plagued hopeful trainers for years, prompting feverous debate and vehement disagreement. The all-important question of who to choose: Charmander, Bulbasaur or Squirtle?
Every Pokémon player has their own personal answer, but what about the makers of the games themselves? Surely they, more than anyone, are in a position to settle this argument definitively, once and for all.
Fortunately, Poké-producers Junichi Masuda and Shigeru Ohmori spoke to Kotaku about their choice picks and, well, the answer isn't quite as definitive as you might hope.
Masuda's choice is that trusty whipper of vines Bulbasaur:
"He’s really cute, as a character. It’s kind of strange to say this, but it’s a very Pokémon-like Pokémon. It really kind of exemplifies what Pokémon is for me. It has that kind of monster-like creature, with a plant-like thing on its back—and I think that that simple combination exemplifies what Pokémon is all about."
Bulbasaur was always a personal favorite of mine, but mainly because I knew I could lay the super-effective smackdown on Brock's hapless Onix when Pewter City rolled around.
However, for Masuda it's got more to do with Bulbasaur's vocal chords:
"I actually created all of the sounds and music in [Red and Blue], and I remember taking one sound and changing the waveforms [for Bulbasaur’s evolution]—taking this cute sound and making it sound cooler. Of [the starters], its cry sounds the most like a monster to me."
But Ohmori has his own opinion, instead opting for the curly tailed turtle:
"I always liked to choose the water-type Pokémon, so Squirtle is my choice. And even in Ruby and Sapphire, I chose Mudkip."
So even the makers of the games can't settle on a starter. All we know now is, don't pick Charmander.
Which starter Pokémon did you choose?