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1[[quoteright:350:[[VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon https://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/starter_pokemon_small.png]]]]² [[caption-width-right:350:''[[Film/IndianaJonesAndTheLastCrusade Choose wisely...]]'']]²²It's a simple fact in the world of MonsSeries: Given the way that most problems resolve around mon-on-mon fights, you need a {{Mon}} yourself to get anywhere. But {{Mons}} themselves are often [[DefeatEqualsFriendship recruited through combat]]--either by defeating them, catching them, or appealing to them to join your cause. Since you ''need'' Mons to ''fight'' Mons, how do you even get into the world of {{Mon}} combat in the first place? Enter the Starter Mon! ²²The Starter Mon is exactly what its name implies: It's the first {{Mon}} the player (or main character) receives on their journey ToBeAMaster. Unlike regular {{Mons}}, this one is usually not caught or recruited like other {{Mons}} would be; it's typically given to them by an outside source, such as an OldMaster. While in many {{RPG}}s, the StartingEquipment tends to be bottom-of-the-barrel, cheap and ordinary stuff, the Starter Mon tends to be a bit different (and a bit more valuable). They typically have three or more of the following traits: ²²* They tend to run the gamut from rather rare to [[UniqueEnemy outright unique]]. Frequently, the only place they ''will'' be available is from the start of the game. If they ''can'' be found in the game world, it's often only under special conditions, or in out-of-the-way places. They also tend to possess unique abilities no other {{Mon}} in the series has. ²* The player is offered a choice between more than one. In this case, picking one is a lot like [[FighterMageThief picking a starting class in other RPGs.]]²* They tend to be at the very least moderately powerful; usually strong enough to be worth using the entire game. The Starting Mon is often intended to function as TheHero of the group, sometimes [[CantDropTheHero in more ways than one.]] ²* If they aren't very strong to start off with, [[MagikarpPower they'll become so later on]]...²** Or they can be useful early on in the adventure, but [[CrutchCharacter fall behind later and are eventually replaced]] once better alternatives are found (This is a rare occurence, though).²* Even if {{Mons}} in the series aren't necessarily BondCreatures, the Starting Mon has a higher than normal chance of being a Bond Creature, or of having a special link with the protagonist. ²* They are [[MascotMook iconic of the game, or franchise, in some way.]] They are often pushed in TheMerch and the marketing for the series.²²In other words, think StartingEquipment [[JustForFun/XMeetsY meets]] TheHero.²²FreeToPlay games with {{Mons}} elements tend to use a slightly different set of characteristics for their starters. Their starter mons tend to be much weaker and more common, more like ComMons. While they can be useful later in the game, the intention is usually to keep you playing the game so you can earn better creatures--and possibly [[BribingYourWayToVictory pay for better ones.]] On the other hand, a well-raised Starter Mon can become a character's SignatureMon.²----²!!Examples:²²[[foldercontrol]]²²!!!VideoGame examples²²[[folder:Pokémon]]²''Franchise/{{Pokemon}}'', being the TropeCodifier for the modern MonsSeries, naturally features many, ''many'' examples of this trope, used in different ways:²* The "main series" Pokemon games traditionally feature a trio of starter Pokemon, each one having [[EvolutionaryLevels three stages]], each embodying the elements of [[ElementalPowers Fire, Water, and Grass]]. These also form one of the most basic ElementalRockPaperScissors triangles in the game: Fire beats Grass, Grass beats Water, Water beats Fire. As of Gen III, the starters can also learn a trio of "ultimate moves": Frenzy Plant, Blast Burn, Hydro Cannon. As of Gen V, they can be taught team combo moves Grass Pledge, Fire Pledge, and Water Pledge. Many starters also typically have a [[SecretArt signature move]] that only they can learn (for their generation, at least). Aside from a pseudo-stater trio in Gen V, the starters also have unique abilities in [[TurnsRed Overgrow, Blaze, and Torrent.]]²** [[VideoGame/PokemonRedAndBlue Generation I]]: Bulbasaur, Charmander, Squirtle. While they did not have official signature moves, they're known for Solar Beam, Flamethrower, and Hydro Pump. Although there was no way to obtain more of these Pokémon within the Game Boy games, those who beat the Elite Four tower in the first ''VideoGame/PokemonStadium'' spin-off game would be rewarded with one of the choice Pokemon. This included not only the starters, but other Pokémon that required you to pick one out of a selection (such as the fossils, Fighting Dojo Pokémon, or Eevee). Also, the ultimate moves were unique to the Kanto starters in Gen III before being opened up to all starters in Gen IV. Generation VI then made them the first starter trio capable of [[SuperMode Mega Evolution]], with Charizard having two options. Pikachu is also considered a Generation I starter choice due to its use in ''VideoGame/PokemonYellow''.²** [[VideoGame/PokemonGoldAndSilver Generation II:]] Chikorita, Cyndaquil, Totodile. Again, these did not have signature moves. Cyndaquil in particular was associated with the new move Flame Wheel, and to a lesser extent old moves Razor Leaf for Chikorita and Bite for Totodile. Generation II is the only Pokémon generation where all the starters remain pure-type throughout their entire evolutionary cycle. In every other generation, one or more of the starters acquires an additional type in its final evolution. ²** [[VideoGame/PokemonRubyAndSapphire Generation III:]] Treecko, Torchic, Mudkip. This was the first starter trio to learn official signature moves: Grovyle and Sceptile have Leaf Blade, Blaziken has Blaze Kick, and Marshtomp and Swampert have Muddy Water. They're also the other starter trio known for Mega Evolution.²** [[VideoGame/PokemonDiamondAndPearl Generation IV:]] Turtwig, Chimchar, Piplup. They are the first starter trio to have dual type in their final evolution stage (though Monferno is a Fire/Fighting-type). Strangely, this group went back to not having signature moves, and didn't really have moves associated with the lines at all.²** [[VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite Generation V]]²*** Snivy, Tepig, Oshawott. This group had signature moves again: Snivy learns Leaf Tornado, Tepig learns Heat Crash, and Oshawott learns Razor Shell. Strangely enough, only Heat Crash was an ''actually'' exclusive move--other 'mons could learn Leaf Tornado and Razor Shell, they just weren't natively available in Generation V.²*** In addition to the usual three starters, [[VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite fifth generation]] features a trio of elemental monkeys, Pansage, Pansear, and Panpour, that are often considered a "secondary starter trio". They have the same types as the regular starters (Grass, Fire, Water), and you're given one for free soon after the beginning of the game--you get whichever your main starter is strong against. They ''can'' be caught, but they're extremely rare. And they have as their Hidden Abilities the same abilities the "regular" starters get. ²** [[VideoGame/PokemonXAndY Generation VI]]²*** Chespin, Fennekin, Froakie. Their signature moves were Spiky Shield for Chespin, Mystical Fire for Fennekin, and Water Shuriken for Froakie. ²*** In the sixth generation, the starters' secondary types in their final evolutions ''also'' form an [[ElementalRockPaperScissors elemental triangle]], with their secondary type being super effective on the same starter their primary type is effective against; Water/Dark, Fire/Psychic, Grass/Fighting. Additionally, the three starters also represent the FighterMageThief class archetypes for [=RPGs=]. ²*** The sixth generation is also the only main-series Pokemon game to give the player two ''real'' starter Pokémon: in addition to the regular starters, the player also gets to pick the Kanto starter Pokémon (Bulbasaur, Charmander, and Squirtle) after defeating Professor Sycamore. ²*** The sixth generation is the first game where starter Pokémon can be caught in the wild, though it's only during the PlayableEpilogue. The "Friend Safari" that becomes accessible then can have wild starter Pokémon available, provided that you have the Safari that has them.²** [[VideoGame/PokemonSunAndMoon Generation VII:]] ²*** Rowlet, Litten, Popplio. Theirs are Spirit Shackle, Darkest Lariat and Sparkling Aria, respectively. Notably, the first two signature moves are typed after the secondary types of the respective starter's final evolution. Rowlet starts out as Grass/Flying, but it becomes Grass/Ghost in the end, while the other two become Fire/Dark and Water/Fairy. They're also the only starter trio with exclusive Z-moves, which derive from the aforementioned signature moves: Sinister Arrow Raid, Malicious Moonsault, and Oceanic Operetta.²*** All the previous starters are available in the wild [[note]]The [[VideoGame/PokemonGoldAndSilver Gen II]] and [[VideoGame/PokemonBlackAndWhite Gen V]] starters in ''Sun and Moon'' and the [[VideoGame/PokemonRedAndBlue Gen I]], [[VideoGame/PokemonRubyAndSapphire Gen III]], [[VideoGame/PokemonDiamondAndPearl Gen IV]], and [[VideoGame/PokemonXAndY Gen VI]] in ''Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon''[[/note]] via Island Scan, a feature that involves scanning QR codes into your Pokedex. After scanning 10 codes, a rare Pokémon becomes available to catch.²*** In ''VideoGame/PokemonUltraSunAndUltraMoon'', the Ultra Beast Poipole is described as being a popular first partner in its own world, and its evolution, Naganadel, has a base stat total on par with many fully-evolved starters. Similarly, it's the only Ultra Beast in the game where the player gets only one of it.²** [[VideoGame/PokemonSwordAndShield Generation VIII:]] Grookey, Scorbunny and Sobble.²* As the SeriesMascot, Pikachu is one of the most common starter choices found in spinoffs.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonYellow'' (and its quasi-remake ''[[VideoGame/PokemonLetsGoPikachuAndLetsGoEevee Pokémon Let's Go, Pikachu!]]'') has Pikachu as the only starting Pokemon in place of the usual Generation I starters (which can all be obtained later in the game). In ''Yellow'', Pikachu can no longer be caught in the wild, and the special Pikachu you start with cannot be evolved into Raichu. It was also the first Pokemon in the series to have a [[RelationshipValues Happiness value]]. Like its Kanto brothers, it also received an "ultimate move" of sorts in Volt Tackle. In ''Let's Go, Pikachu!''[='s=] counterpart ''Let's Go, Eevee!'', the rival has Pikachu as his starter instead.²** All ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeon'' games (except for ''Blazing'' and ''Stormy Adventure Squad'', due to the way the ''Adventure Squad'' games split starter choices).²** All ''VideoGame/PokemonRumble'' games except for the first game and ''Rush''.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonGo'', as a hidden option.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonQuest''²** ''VideoGame/PokemonMasters''²* Many Pokémon spinoff games have Eevee as their starting Pokémon. In addition to being a rare Pokémon, it can evolve into up to '''''eight''''' different Pokemon, each of a different type, thus offering the player a choice down the line. All of its evolutions are popular and well-liked, in addition to being fairly strong. Games with Eevee (or one of its evolutions) as a starter: ²** ''VideoGame/PokemonYellow'': The rival started with an Eevee opposed to the player's Pikachu. With no breeding mechanics in Gen I, when the player obtains their own Eevee they have a choice between three evolution stones sold in the Mart of the same town Eevee's in. The rival will choose whatever evolution has the best defense against Pikachu depending on how many battles he loses at the beginning of the game.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeon Rescue Team'', ''Explorers of Sky'', and ''Blazing Adventure Squad''.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonColosseum'' (you have two starters; Espeon and Umbreon, two of Eevee's forms).²** ''VideoGame/PokemonXDGaleOfDarkness''.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonConquest''.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonQuest''²** ''[[VideoGame/PokemonLetsGoPikachuAndLetsGoEevee Pokémon Let's Go, Eevee!]]'' In its counterpart ''Let's Go, Pikachu!'', the Eevee goes to the rival as it did in ''Yellow''. In this case, his Eevee will always become a Jolteon in order to match Pikachu's type.²* The ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeon'' series lets you choose ''two'' starters; one representing you and one as your friend and partner:²** ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeonRescueTeam'': You and your partner can be any of the ten Gen I to III starters. You can also be an Eevee, Machop, Cubone, Psyduck, Meowth, or Skitty; but your partner can't.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeonExplorers of Time and Darkness'': The Gen I to IV starters for both characters, plus Meowth, Skitty, and Munchlax for you.²*** Its third version, ''Explorers of Sky'', removes Meowth and Munchlax but adds Phanpy, Riolu, Shinx, Eevee, and Vulpix.²** In the Japan-only ''Mystery Dungeon Adventure Squad'' games, each of the three has its own set of starters based on the game's associated element and color:²*** ''Blazing Adventure Squad'' has the Gen I-IV fire starters (Charmander, Cyndaquil, Torchic, Chimchar), Vulpix, Growlithe, Eevee, Teddiursa, and Buneary.²*** ''Stormy Adventure Squad'' has the Gen I-IV water starters (Squirtle, Totodile, Mudkip, Piplup), Wooper, Phanpy, Azurill, Wynaut, and Riolu.²*** ''Light Adventure Squad'' has Pikachu, Meowth, Psyduck, Pichu, Togepi, Mareep, Elekid, Shinx, and Pachirisu.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonMysteryDungeonGatesToInfinity'': Only the Gen V starters, Pikachu, and Axew.²** ''VideoGame/PokemonSuperMysteryDungeon'': All starters from Gens I to VI plus Riolu.²* ''VideoGame/PokemonRanger'': The original game has Minun or Plusle, depending on whether you pick the male or female player character. ''Shadows of Almia'' starts with Pachirisu, Starly, or Munchlax. ''Guardian Signs'' provides a Pichu to the player.²* ''VideoGame/PokemonRumble'' has Ratatta for the first game and ''Rumble Rush'', and Pikachu for ''Rumble Blast'' and ''Rumble World''. ''Rumble U'', being a multiplayer game, provides four Pokémon to begin with; the Gen V starters and Pikachu.²* ''VideoGame/PokemonGo'' uses the Gen I starters. Bulbasaur, Charmander, and Squirtle are initially presented, but Pikachu is a hidden fourth option that appears if you refuse to select one of the first three.²* ''VideoGame/PokemonQuest'', focusing on Gen I characters, has the four Gen I starters and Eevee.²* ''VideoGame/PokemonMasters'' revolves around not just the Pokémon, but their trainers. In addition to the Player Character and their Pikachu, players are given Brock and Misty (who own Onix and Starmie respectively) to round out a three-pair team. The gacha tutorial is also set to summon Whitney and her Miltank right off the bat, as well.²[[/folder]]²²[[folder:Other Video Games]]²* ''VideoGame/AzurLane'' features quite a few "starters" for each category of ship. The absolute classic example of this trope [[labelnote:*]](pick one of three choices at the start depending on server; they're "Elite" [second-highest] rarity; all ships are bundled together in maps, which will always have a chance of dropping any of the four (once the fourth one is unlocked via [[CollectionSidequest collecting and limit-breaking the others]]) if they drop at all; they're all considered among the top ten destroyers with [[MagikarpPower retrofit upgrades]]; they're heavily promoted as the cute "starter squad" {{Cast Herd}}ed across national lines)[[/labelnote]] occurs with Javelin, Z23, Laffey, and Ayanami, the destroyers you start the game with. As a FreeToPlay game, the "cheaper" variant of the trope also occurs with some CrutchCharacter ships in their class that get obsolete fast: Repulse (BC/BB) and Long Island(CV/L). A few strong free ships are also given to the player for simply progressing, without needing to dive into the [[RandomDrops gacha or map drops]]: Portland will usually be a player's first heavy cruiser, and Prinz Eugen is another heavy cruiser and typically a player's first "Super Rare" (highest-rarity) ship.²* The ''Franchise/{{Digimon}}'' video games, naturally, use this trope.²** In ''VideoGame/DigimonWorld3,'' you're actually given a selection from a number of different Starter Mon ''packs,'' as opposed to just one.²** In ''VideoGame/DigimonWorldDawnDusk,'' you also get to choose from different starter "packs." Although they have different supporting 'mons, each pack also contains its [[OneGameForThePriceOfTwo versions']] unique mascot: Coronamon for ''Dawn'' and Lunamon for ''Dusk.'' They also include [[ATasteOfPower high-stage Digimon that seem unusually strong for the beginning of the game]], which are naturally reverted to their basic forms early in the plot.²* Oddly for a MonsSeries, the ''VideoGame/MonsterRancher'' franchise usually ''averts'' this: Since monsters in the game are randomly generated based on different factors (such as [=CDs=] or other games inserted in the console, or strings of code), the player can start with just about any monster they want, and as ''many'' as they want. Some breeds ''are'' locked from the start, however.²* ''VideoGame/NiNoKuni''²** The game has Mite, Oliver's first familiar. He is [[BondCreatures explicitly formed out of Oliver's soul,]] and his melee attacks remain powerful for most of the game. In the DS version, he's even [[CantDropTheHero the only familiar you can't take out of your party.]] ²** The [[UsefulNotes/PlayStation3 PS3]] version has a special island that contains only the base versions of the "storyline familiars", such as Mite, as well as the other human characters' default familiars, and those who join you during the story. ²* ''VideoGame/MonsterRacers'' has Leafee, Cuboom, and Phoechick. Each one specializes in running on a different kind of terrain (Grass, Sand, and Lava respectively).²* When players are first introduced to the Summoning feature in ''[[VideoGame/{{Onmyoji}} Onmyōji]]'', they are guaranteed to get a 3-star SR Yuki-onna and a 2-star R Sanbi-no-kitsune. Both are powerful attacker-type ''shikigami''.²* ''VideoGame/FossilFighters''²** The first game has a Spinax who is given to you to start. Spinax is actually a fairly ordinary and easy-to-find fossil in the first area, though he ''is'' fairly useful throughout the game.²** The second game takes a more traditional approach to this trope: At the start of the game, Joe Wildwest offers you a choice between four different dinos, one for each main element in the game. All of them possess [[EvolutionaryLevels Super Evolver]] capabilities and all are fairly strong, and cannot be found until later in the game. You also receive a Tricera after the cleaning tutorial. ²** The third game, ''Fossil Fighters Frontier,'' has Chompasaurus, a tiny T-rex like dino who can change form and evolve like a more traditional Mon. Your entire group of friends treats him like your TeamPet and he's a special friend of the main character. [[spoiler: And he's the de-powered form of a powerful genetically-altered beast.]]²* ''VideoGame/FateGrandOrder:'' The game has two types of Starter Servants:²** The first type is the guaranteed Shielder every player will start with: Mash Kyrielight. She will always be the player's first Servant and she's the only one the player doesn't need to roll or to have partake in events for. She also serves as the player's SignatureMon and the game's SeriesMascot.²** In addition to Mash, every new player will perform a Starter Summon, a tutorial-type 10-summon which guarantees them at least one out of ten (later 14) available 4* Servant. The original ten Servants were Siegfried (Saber), Chevalier d'Eon (Saber), EMIYA (Archer) Elisabeth Báthory (Lancer), Marie Antoinette (Rider), Saint Martha (Rider), Carmilla (Assassin), Stheno (Assassin), Heracles (Berserker) and Tamamo Cat (Berserker). The Caster-class was notably the only main class not covered by the ten. As of July 3rd, 2019, five new Starter Servants have been added to the Starter Summon pool, which are Suzuka Gozen (Saber), Atalante (Archer), Parvati (Lancer) Helena Blavatsky (Caster) and Nursery Rhyme (Caster). Of the original ten, only d'Eon has been removed while the other nine remain within the pool. With this change, each of the seven main classes is represented by two Starter Servants. 5* Servants or other 4* Servants are not available for the Starter Summon. Random 3* Servants that are neither story-locked nor limited are available for the Starter Summon, thus the player is guaranteed to have at least three Servants in their party when they start out. Due to the nature of Starter Summon, it's easy for new players and veterans to reroll it (read: re-start a new game and roll again) to obtain the 4* they desire, with Heracles and EMIYA being the two most popular choices.²* ''VideoGame/GranblueFantasy'': Katalina is the starting Story character, while Walder is the tutorial R character who everyone gets. An update in 2017 included the rigged SSR tutorial draw which gives out a free SSR character of a specific element. They are Carmelina, Melleau, Charlotta, Zeta, Lady Grey, and De La Fille.²* ''VideoGame/DragonQuestMonsters''²** The very first game starts you out with an ordinary and humble Slime. For the most part, it's largely because Slime is the MascotMook of the VideoGame/DragonQuest series... but Slimes in the DQM universe ''do'' have the potential to learn the single most powerful attack spell in the game, typically only usable by boss monsters and other difficult-to-breed creatures. The LevelCap might keep your starter from learning that spell, but that's not to say his ''[[HotSkittyOnWailordAction offspring]]'' won't be able to. ²** ''Joker'' gives you a special, form-swapping monster partner. He's [[CantDropTheHero always a member of your party]], unlike others, and he's a member of the special "???" monster family that normally only holds bosses. ²* ''VideoGame/EternalEyes'' gives you Mooscue, the game's MascotMook, as one of your two starting mons. ²* The traditional starter 'bot in ''VideoGame/{{Robopon}}'' is Sunny, a vaguely rabbit-like red robot. The Japan-only [[OneGameForThePriceOfTwo second games]] also have C-Cell, a battery-like robot.²* Kewne in ''VideoGame/AzureDreams.'' He is explicitly closely linked to the protagonist--necessarily so, because ''he's'' the one who levels up in the protagonist's place. (Or rather, the protagonist de-levels whenever he leaves a dungeon, and Kewne doesn't.) He's also the only monster who doesn't follow the [[ColorCodedForYourConvenience elemental color-coding of the other monsters]] ([[spoiler: Well, aside from the final boss]]), and has his own special sprite. ²* Dinosaur-themed RPG ''Fossil League'' has a Staurikosaurus who befriends the protagonist the first time he travels back in time. In addition to being a Neutral-element dinosaur who can use many different skill types, he's also the only one of his species you meet, and [[HelloInsertNameHere the only dinosaur you get to name.]] [[CantDropTheHero You can't take him out of your party]], and he behaves more closely to a pet than the other dinosaurs you recruit do. ²* Mobile[=/DSi=] game ''[[Creator/GameLoft Crystal Monsters]]'' gives you a choice between a fire type, water type, and plant type 'mon, [[FollowTheLeader much like Pokemon does.]] They cannot be caught in the wild, but they ''can'' be [[HotSkittyOnWailordAction bred]] later on in the game.²* ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' will often start you off with Pixie, a low level tiny fairy with usually the lowest level elec spell and lowest level heal spell.²** In the ''Shin Megami Tensei'' spinoff ''VideoGame/DevilChildren'', the only installments in the LighterAndSofter ''Devil Children'' series to come to the US, there are Rox and Nex; [[OneGameForThePriceOfTwo Rox in the dark version and Nex in the light version.]] They are the human characters' special partners, and can evolve at certain moments in the games (which no other monster can do). They even have special fusion rules associated with them, and [[CantDropTheHero can't be removed from the party, either.]]²** The ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTenseiPersona'' subseries, from the third title onwards, has the protagonist's initial Persona. While other Personas are mostly generic demons from ''Franchise/ShinMegamiTensei'' games, these initial Personas have unique designs exclusive to the game, and are heavily associated with the protagonists themselves. In addition, they start with level 1, is of the Fool Arcana, and cannot be gotten through random encounters. ²*** ''VideoGame/{{Persona 3}}'' has Orpheus, the starter Persona of the protagonist. It's fairly unremarkable and players will often fuse it away for better Personas. Fairly late in the game, however, you can fuse Orpheus with Thanatos to create the protagonist's ultimate Persona, Messiah. Additionally, in the UpdatedRerelease versions, a much stronger version, named Orpheus Telos, is available as the highest level and most customizable Persona in the game.²*** ''VideoGame/{{Persona 4}}'' has Izanagi, the initial Persona of the protagonist. Like Orpheus in the previous game, it's fairly unremarkable and players will often fuse him away. In NewGamePlus after getting the True Ending, however, you can fuse Izanagi-no-Okami, a level 90 Persona and the only one of the World Arcana, which requires regular Izanagi as one of its component. It also plays into the story as [[spoiler: The Killer's Persona is its EvilTwin, Magatsu Izanagi]] and [[spoiler: the TrueFinalBoss is Izanami, the vengeful wife of Izanagi in the myths]]. In the ''VideoGame/Persona4Arena'' duology, the protagonist exclusively uses Izanagi and Izanagi-no-Okami.²*** ''VideoGame/{{Persona 5}}'': Arsene, the only level 1 Persona GuardianEntity, who you get at the very start of the game and starts with nothing but a weak physical attack and a weak darkness spell. Leveling him up will take longer than any other Persona in the game, and you'll have to sacrifice dozens of stronger Guardian Entities to him to give him enough high-end skills to make him useful beyond the first dungeon. As with ''Persona 4 Arena'', Joker exclusively uses Arsene when he appears in ''VideoGame/SuperSmashBrosUltimate'' (despite his lack of power in his home game, which is explicitly noted in the launch trailer but {{Handwave}}d away by RuleOfCool).²* ''VideoGame/{{Spectrobes}}'' actually gives you ''three'' starters: Two adult Spectrobes for combat, and one child Spectrobe for finding fossils/gems with. In every game in the series, either the child, one of the adults, or ''both'' with be members of the Komainu family, Komainu being the MascotMook of the games. ²* The first yokai you recruit in ''VideoGame/YokaiWatch'' is a cicada yokai, but the yokai who ''actually'' fills the Starting Mon role is Jibanyan. He's a unique, powerful yokai who is introduced in a special storyline quest, and he's the MascotMook of the series. The sequel makes him the ''actual'' first Yokai you recruit, he can't be traded, and unlike in the first game, when you evolve him into either Thornyan or Baddinyan, you can still use his regular form. ²* ''VideoGame/MocoMocoFriends'' has Scrunchie, a mysterious, chipmunk-like Plushkin whom no one had ever seen before until Moco befriended her. Unlike other Plushkins, she evolves through story events and learns powerful Light spells. ²* In ''VideoGame/DinosaurKing,'' your starting mon is determined based on your choice of player character. Max starts with a Triceratops, while Rex gets a Carnotaurus. ²* In ''VideoGame/{{Invizimals}}'', you have a choice between two insect-like Invizimals, Stingwing and Ironbug, to catch at the beginning of the game. ²* ''VideoGame/MetalWalker'' has Meta Ball. He's explicitly a good friend of the protagonist, and he's also the MascotMook who shows up on the game's box art. ²* In the first ''VideoGame/{{Telefang}}'' games, your Starter Mon depends on your [[OneGameForThePriceOfTwo version.]] ''Power'' version nets you the armadillo-like Crypto, while the Speed version gets you the draconic Fungus.²* ''VideoGame/ZanZarahTheHiddenPortal'': Before you leave the FirstTown, you must choose one three starter fairies offered to you by Rufus: an all-rounder Nature fairy Sillia with a good evolution path, a [[MightyGlacier tanky]] Stone fairy Grem, or a wonky Water fairy Tadana. The last one seems like an odd choice, except that you won't have a chance to capture another water fairy for quite a while after that.²* ''VideoGame/MonsterHunter Stories'' plays with this. In general, Rathalos ticks all the boxes: rare, powerful, the first "Monstie" that the player meets, forms a special bond with the protagonist, and already a mascot of the parent franchise. However, it suffers a DisneyDeath at the end of the prologue before you get any actual game time with it. When you actually start playing, you're given a ComMon Velocidrome instead, and have to wait until you're reunited with Rathalos. Once it does reappear, it's even further treated as special, as it opens up a sixth slot in your team roster [[CantDropTheHero exclusively for it, and you won't be able to switch it out until the post-game]].²* In ''VideoGame/PuzzleAndDragons'', you're given the choice between Tyrra, Plessie, and Brachy.²** In the 3DS spinoff ''Puzzle & Dragons Z'', the choices are instead Melagon, Zabgon, and Morigon. In plot terms, the Starter Mon's narrative role goes to Syrup, a little dragon that befriends the hero [[spoiler:and is the SleepModeSize form of the Skydragon of Life, Zerclea]], but he's an NPC that never takes part in combat. As a nod to the parent game, Tyrra, Plessie, and Brachy can be found in the post-game areas.²** For ''Puzzle & Dragons: Super Mario Edition'', the Leader characters, Mario and Luigi, have most of the Starting Mon traits; you start with Small versions of each but unlock more versions of both throughout the game. You're also given Red Toad as your first Helper character and a Goomba and Green Koopa Troopa to fill out your {{Mons}} roster slots at the start.²[[/folder]]²²!!!Non-VideoGame examples²²[[folder:Anime and Manga]]²* The Burnt Meatballs in ''Anime/FightingFoodons'' were Chase's first attempt at making a Foodon. They're not particularly powerful, but Chase nonetheless has a special connection to them and keeps them around. ²[[/folder]]²----

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