by Ryan Kuhn
Welcome to the world of Pokémon… in Hyrule.
That’s right–it’s Ryan with a crossover episode of fandoms! This time, we are going to talk about which Pokémon the main characters from Breath of the Wild would have as their starter. We are going to check out Daruk, Mipha, Revali, Urbosa, Zelda, Impa, and, of course, Link. So, everyone pull out your Pokédex and get ready to see what our heroes start with.
With the big, strong guy afraid of dogs, I had to think a little. On one hand, I want something tough that even eats rocks, but on the other hand, I want something that is tough but also friendly and encouraging.
My first thought led me to Lavitar, as it eats rocks to move to the next stage of evolution, but these tiny guys turn into Tyranitar, who is definitely not a Goron type and would give slight flashbacks to dragons that have tried to eat their ancestors.
In the end, I decided to go with Shieldon. Though not a rock type, it has the right personality. It loves to chill and eat and will protect others whenever needed. When it evolves to Bastiodon, not only does its personality stay similar, but when threatened, its group joins together to protect the herd/family. I believe that Daruk is similar to this and has his own shield with Daruk’s Protection. Daruk was always there to keep Link safe and also all of the Gorons and everyone in Hyrule.
Mipha’s grace, serenity, and association with water made it easy to pick her Pokémon. I went with Vaporeon, a graceful and friendly Pokémon that does well on both land and sea, just like any great Zora.
Vaporeon is usually mellow compared to others in the Eeveelutions (like Jolteon) and will attack only as a last resort. Mipha has the same energy, but don’t let the poise trick you: she and Vaporeon are both strong and can take anyone in a fight.
Revali is swift, fast, and maybe too full of himself (actually, no, he’s definitely too full of himself). For me, that means his perfect Pokémon starter is Swellow.
Swellow might not be big, but it is fast, graceful, and very agile. This bird would be one of the few able to keep up with Revali as it flies around Rito Village.
I briefly considered Pidgeot, as it is just as graceful flying around, too, but Swellow is way faster than Pidgeot, which makes it a better match for Revali. Also, though this isn't confirmed in any Pokédex readings, I have a feeling that Swellow is just as confident as Revali.
My first thought for Urbosa was Ampharos; however, after some more research, I stumbled upon Heliolisk and knew I had a match.
Why Heliolisk? If you open your Pokédex, you will learn that a “now-vanished desert culture treasured these Pokémon.” In my mind, this tidbit might just place Zelda and Pokémon in the same universe. Mind blown!
Heliolisks are desert lizards that lie in the sun to generate electricity, and they can attack with this stored power, almost like with the snap of fingers. How perfect is that for our lightning-powered friend, Urbosa? I know some of you readers may have wanted Walrein as an homage to the sand walruses, but they are ice/water type. That just isn't right in the desert. Another great choice some may say would be Solrock, but I am not sure the psychic style would go with Urbosa’s strength.
Our favorite princess is not your average sit-down-and-wear-the-puffy-dress princess. She likes to explore and learn about what is around her and wants to get to where she wants to go without a swordsman following her (at first, at least). These reasons led me to pair her with Dragonite.
Dragonite is rare to find in the wild, but with Zelda’s training, she would have no issue moving little Dratini all the way up. Dragonites are also curious and intelligent creatures that learn and even match human intelligence. On top of all of that, Dragonite can take Zelda to any ruin on the map and keep her safe far better than a swordsman (sorry, Link). I am sure King Rhoam would be quite OK with Dragonite watching over his daughter.
Impa and the other Sheikah would all have the same Pokémon as their starter, a Pokémon that is quick and agile and has the ninja-like skills to fight with them: Greninja.
Pokédex entries state over and over that this Pokémon has many skills similar to ninjas and seems to slip in and out of the shadows with ease. This is the way for the Sheikah as they train to be protectors of the royal family and particularly Zelda herself.
I am sure Impa and her Greninja would race each other to see who is the quickest and able to stay out of sight the longest.
All right, all right. I know almost everyone wants me to say Honedge, but I say, “Nay!” My main reason here is that Honedge is not safe to grab and use—if you were to grab the hilt, it latches onto you and drains your HP, which is not helpful at all.
Instead, I wanted to choose a Pokémon that embodies the Triforce of Courage, as that is Link’s most important aspect. The best Pokémon to represent that is Braviary, a bird Pokémon whose Pokédex entry says “They fight for their friends without any thought about danger to themselves.” This screams “Link.” Also, Rufflet, the previous form, gives the same energy to Braviary as Toon Link does to Adult Link.
If you have thoughts on other starters for these heroes or thoughts for other characters I didn’t mention, let me know in the comments below or reach out to me on Twitter @rambokuhn. If you have thoughts and wish to share them with a beer, you can check out @brewthersinlaw on Twitter, @wiseoldowlsbrew on Twitter or on TikTok, and the website www.brewthersinlaw.com.