The 10 Most Powerful Generation I Pokémon, Ranked

Pokémon has become a significant influence on people's lives. What started as a basic trading card game and obscure RPG concept has developed into so much more. We can't help but be fascinated by Pokémon, because of their connections with trainers and their ability to persevere through fierce battles. It is often the trainer who determines the outcome of a battle, but the power of a Pokémon has considerable influence.

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By looking at a Pokémon's stats, utility and other factors, we can determine which Pokémon are the 'strongest.' You've already played the games, and now it's time to rank the most powerful Generation I Pokémon.

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10 Ditto

Ditto is a unique slime-like Pokémon, whose only 'attack' allows it to transform into its opponent. Although a Ditto who transforms copies its opponent's stats and moves, its HP remains the same. Lower HP is a huge reason why Ditto can prove to be ineffective in battles. Pound for pound, however, Ditto is one of the most powerful, versatile and potentially threatening Pokémon in existence.

Ditto is very difficult to use effectively, but it can be devastating at the right moment. You wouldn't think it to look at it, but it can be a formidable threat in battles. Especially now that it doesn't have to waste a turn, thanks to its Imposter ability.

9 Exeggutor

In Pokémon Sun and Moon and their follow-ups, Alolan Exeggutor is much larger and designed to look like a palm tree. Since Exeggutor is exposed to much more sunlight in the Alola region, it can grow over five times taller than its standard form.

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Exeggutor uses both Grass and Psychic moves in battle, the latter of which made it super effective against a wide range of Pokémon. In the original games, Psychic was an incredibly overpowered typing, to the point that Dark had to be introduced in Generation II simply to counter it.

8 Arcanine

This canine Pokémon is far larger than the average dog, and displays levels of intelligence and bravery beyond many other Pokémon. Gary is one of the characters in the animated series who owns an Arcanine. Players can ride this Fire-type Pokémon in Pokémon: Let's Go, Pikachu! and Let's Go, Eevee! By evolving Growlithe using a Fire Stone, trainers can obtain an Arcanine.

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Taking a look at Arcanine's stats, we can tell that it is not a weak Pokémon. High power in Attack and Special Attack makes Arcanine's Fire-type techniques powerful. By leveling up in Generation VII, Arcanine can learn strong Fire-type moves like Flare Blitz, Heat Wave, and Flamethrower—it can also learn the Dragon-type move Outrage. While it's not super strong in any one area, its great mixed stats allow it to run a range of sets very well.

7 Gyarados

As a Pokémon that evolves from the weakest Pokémon in Generation I, Magikarp, it's surprising to see Gyarados make this list. Unlike its previous evolutionary form, Gyarados has outbursts of rage, which are caused by a change in its brain structure during evolution.

Gyarados is a Flying-type and Water-type Pokémon. With a high Attack stat and access to excellent moves like Dragon Dance (not to mention the Intimidate ability), Gyarados is one Pokémon not to underestimate. It's been a mainstay of competitive teams for generations of games, for good reason.

6 Articuno

Articuno is a legendary bird from the region of Kanto. Articuno is so powerful that it can change the weather into a snowstorm. Articuno's wings are said to be made of ice. As an Ice-type and Flying-Type Pokémon, Articuno can be found in the Seafoam Islands, which are next to Cinnabar Island.

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Leveling Articuno takes a while since it has a slow leveling rate, but training this Pokémon is a thrill because of its fierce Ice-type moves and majestic appearance. It has awkward stats (a defensive Ice-type is tough to pull off when Ice is weak to EVERYTHING EVER), but it's an iconic Pokémon that can perform well.

5 Moltres

The last legendary bird that players can find in Generation I of the Pokémon games is the fiery bird Moltres. It's a phoenix-inspired Pokémon with a blazing tail and wings. Just before the Elite Four, Moltres is waiting in a secluded place in Victory Road.

In the Super Smash Bros. series, Moltres has been a recurring Pokémon, appearing in every single game to date. In its home series, it's also tough to use, with its crippling weakeness to Stealth Rock and middling Speed. However, properly supported, it has a great deal of firepower.

4 Zapdos

With such high stats, it was necessary to include Generation 1's legendary birds in this list. Zapdos is regarded as the strongest (and most competitively viable) legendary bird, also being super effective against both Articuno and Moltres.

In Pokémon battles, Zapdos can also be an unpredictable one. Like Arcanine, its well-rounded stats allow it to take an offensive or defensive role, meaning that Zapdos is a desirable Pokémon for most trainers.

3 Mew

The Mythical Pokémon Mew has many people doubting its existence, since it has almost never been seen. We're going to rank it as the third most powerful Generation I Pokémon, even though it is weaker than many of the other Mythical Pokémon from later generations.

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Mew does not evolve into any other Pokémon. Its design may have been inspired by a mammalian creature; possibly a rabbit or a cat. Its biggest asset is its versatility: it can learn any move by TM or HM and all of its base stats sit at a respectable 100. Strangely enough, Mew carries the DNA of all Pokémon.

2 Dragonite

The Dragon-type Pokémon Dragonite is one of the most powerful from the first generation (which is only right, considering what a pain it was to acquire). Later generations were super kind to the OG Dragon-type, giving it moves like Extreme Speed and Dragon Dance and the wonderful ability Multiscale. It's still a force to be reckoned with in the meta.

Dragonite's first appearance in the anime was in the episode titled "Mystery At The Lighthouse." We only got a chance to see the silhouette of Dragonite, but oddly, this Pokémon was giant, much larger than it usually appears. The early episodes of the Pokémon anime foreshadowed the appearance of many powerful Pokémon.

1 Mewtwo

Metwo is recognized for appearing in the first Pokémon movie, Pokémon: The First Movie. The Psychic Pokémon Mewtwo is a secret Pokémon in the endgame of Generation I Pokémon games. If you've used your Master Ball elsewhere, you'll have a heck of a battle on your hands to catch this one.

The Pokémon Mewtwo does not appear naturally in the wild. It was created through scientific experiments using gene splicing and DNA engineering. Unlike the Pokémon Mew, Mewtwo (its clone) has an evil persona in the television series and manga. The Psychic-type was a dominant force back then, and Mewtwo was the ultimate Psychic force.

NEXT: Ranking The 10 Most Adorable Pokémon

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