Who Ya Got: Pikachu vs. Eevee
In just under three months we will return to the Kanto region as we attempt to catch 'em all one more time with Pokémon: Let's Go. The new adventure coming to the Nintendo Switch on November 16, 2018 will be a revamped version of Pokémon Yellow with a slight difference. Instead of being forced to start your journey with Pikachu you are given the alternate choice of rolling with Eevee. Since there are two separate versions of the game you will need to make your choice of which starting Pokémon is the best fit for you prior to making your initial purchase. What better time to start the conversation on who to pick than a slow Tuesday in late August?
Let's start off with arguably the most well-known Pokémon in the entire series: Pikachu. While he isn't the biggest, strongest, or fastest pocket monster, he soared in popularity as Ash's main companion on the tv series. Unlike every other Pokémon, the laws of poké-ball captivity simply don't apply to the electric mouse. This unprecedented freedom made it easy for fans of the series to grow fond of the little rodent as it was rare that you'd watch a scene without him present. Even though he didn't possess the strongest arsenal of moves, we felt a bond with Pikachu because of the relationship he had with Ash. Children around the world would cheer when Pikachu saved the day in a tense battle and they teared up when he was knocked down and almost out. This obvious connection made the creation of Pokémon Yellow a no-brainer.
While it's easy to be wrapped up in the character connection, that's not what I take into account when I'm choosing my starting Pokémon. Sure, Pikachu is stellar against water and flying types but he is rendered virtually useless against ground, grass, and rock. You know who the first gym battle is in the Kanto region? It's Brock... with his collection of rock monsters. I've recently been playing through Yellow and one of the first things that bugged me was at the very beginning of the game I wasn't leveling Pikachu who was supposed to be the focal point. Instead I had to find a wild Pokémon, level them up substantially, and then attempt to dethrone Brock. Since Let's Go is, in the simplest sense, a remaster of Yellow, the thought of replaying that early sequence all over again is not appealing in the least.
I will give the mouse credit when it is due. After that first gym battle you do get the chance to start focusing on his growth. After you spend some time leveling the little shocker, he becomes a formidable competitor. Thunderbolt is one of the more vicious moves in the game especially when directed at water and flying types. Pokémon has always been a game based around building a solid, complimentary roster of fighters as you battle your way through the region and Pikachu is certainly a vital piece. You can take out all of Misty's monsters with about four moves if you've leveled Pikachu enough so there's no denying his value. I appreciate what Pikachu can do in a battle but I'm not convinced he's a #1 choice.
At first glance you might be crazy to think Eevee could be a realistic choice when paired against the more well-known Pikachu. What makes Eevee so intriguing is the coupling of being a normal-type Pokémon equipped with one-of-a-kind versatility. Unlike certain types of monsters such as electric, water, fire, and grass, normal doesn't deal out any "super effective" damage. This can easily be a turn off and lead people down Electric Avenue as they side with Pikachu. However, normal types don't have many primary weaknesses to speak of. It is often their secondary type (i.e. flying is weak towards electricity) that will cause them to lose significant health after an attack. On the flip side, Eevee possess a versatility that is hard to come by in the original 151 which makes the choice between who to pick a real doozy.
Eevee provides a flexibility that you just cannot experience with Pikachu. You are able to choose who Eevee evolves into. Depending on how your journey has played out, you can now round out your lineup based on your needs. If you lack a high-powered water Pokémon, use the water stone to evolve him into Vaporeon. Weren't able to find that Charmander you were looking for and now you lack some serious fire power? The fire stone will take care of that when it turns Eevee into Flareon. Heck, maybe you regret not going with Pikachu because you really need some electricity in your lineup. No problem at all! The lightning stone will grow your Eevee into Jolteon in no time. The evolution of Pokémon can make a huge difference in the success of your lineup. Having the ability to choose exactly which type of Pokémon you want Eevee to turn into is a luxury that isn't afforded to those who choose Pikachu, a character who flat out refuses to allow you to evolve him into Raichu. That type of stubborn behavior is not an appealing characteristic.
I'm going to make this short and sweet. On November 16, 2018 I am choosing Eevee to go on my Pokémon adventure. I've gone down the roads of the Kanto region with Pikachu in the past, including recently. He's a formidable contender, for sure, but the allure of Eevee's versatility is too good to pass up. There is a calming sense knowing I can mold my Pokémon lineup as I see fit by evolving him into the right monster at the right time. Couple that with the potential replay value as you test out the other evolution choices and my mind is made up. Sorry Pikachu, but I choose Eevee.
Who are you selecting? Let us know in the comments or give us a call at 347-509-5620.