Splatoon players finally settle Pokémon’s best starter type

Splatoon 3’s Splatfest results helped settle one of the biggest questions in Nintendo history this weekend. Which starter Pokémon type is the best?

There are three possible answers to the question: fire, water, and grass. The Splatfest allowed players to pick a side by choosing a team and competing on that type’s behalf. While the popularity contest between the three types has been raging as long as Pokémon itself, we finally know once and for all which is best, because Team Water won the competition in an absolute landslide.

The water-type tsunami wasn’t a shoo-in. The mid-event report showed a tight race between all three types, with less than a 3% gap between the teams. However, the results appeared to spur Team Water, which pulled out a final win with 45 points, leaving the other two sides with no points.

The event happened just before the release of the next set of mainline Pokémon games, Pokémon Scarlet and Violet, on Nov. 18. Because of this, the results could be interpreted as a referendum on the three starter Pokémon for the upcoming games. This year we have Fuecoco (fire), Sprigatito (grass), and Quaxly (water).

There is plenty to love about each option. According to leaks, Fuecoco’s final evolution isn’t bipedal, which fans praised because so many fire type starters have historically evolved into humanoid monsters. The cat Sprigatito has the fact that it’s a purr-fect baby that the stoner community embraced with open arms.

Despite the stiff competition, Quaxly and Team Water won in the end. While we can’t say for sure why water-types have such a strong appeal, there are at least a few likely reasons that contributed to its overall popularity as a team. For starters, Team Water was represented by the lovable manta ray Big Man, who is just a popular addition to the Splatoon franchise.

But let me propose one more theory: Quaxly’s fabulous design transcended all competition. Last week, leaks allegedly showed Quaxly’s final evolution, to which fans responded in widespread excitement. The final evolution, although bipedal, maintains the look and posture of a drag queen crossed with a peacock. It absolutely slays and I’d like to think that’s what gave Team Water the edge it needed.