Pokémon fans all over the world already know which starter they are choosing, even before they make their official choice come November 18. Players can choose the grass type Rowlet, the fire type Litten and the water type Popplio. Never has the choice between starters been so one-sided. No, not one-sided but two-sided. Players have overwhelmingly decided to start with Rowlet, who is an owl and has a rebellious teenager middle evolution called Dartrix. The next popular, and my choice of starter, is Litten, a kitten who becomes a larger cat with a flame bell around its neck called Torracat. That leaves the lesser popular Popplio a seal who becomes the pop star Pokémon Brionne.
Game Freak developers Junichi Masuda and Shigeru Ohmori have also already decided who they will choose and you’ll probably be able to guess which starter they will choose. In interviews with Kotaku, both Masuda and Ohmori have revealed who they will be choosing.
Masuda explained why he was going to pick Litten:
At home I have a really tiny cat. …it’s 3 kilograms. it crawls around, gets right on my shoulder, so I’m a cat man.
Ohmori decided that Rowlet is his favorite, citing how they drafted the 3D movements of the X and Y starters that kicked off the series on the Nintendo 3DS platform. The goal was to make the Pokémon move more lively and they upped their game with the Sun and Moon starters. He said that while all of the starters have their own unique in-battle animation, his favorites are Rowlet line, including the hair flip that Dartrix does.
When asked about the popularity (or lack-there-of) of the water starter Popplio, Ohmori was quick to come to the defense of it.
There’s two of us. But of course we don’t want to exclude anybody. I personally think that Popplio was very cute and he’ll be very popular with a lot of people.
Popplio has gotten both more defense and more flack. Its middle evolution has gotten less support due to its supposed femininity. People have been posting their distaste for Brionne’s femininity. The Pokémon website explained that Brionne is always positive and never lets its sorrow show, so I doubt that a real life Brionne would care about the negative comments fans have to say.
You can pick your copy of the games on November 18. The demo was released yesterday, exactly one month before the final release.