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Pokémon Sun and Moon are launching this Friday, and we at Gamnesia wanted to celebrate—that’s why, for the eighteen days leading up to the games’ launch, we’ve been revealing our team’s Top Ten Pokémon of each of the eighteen Types! We’re continuing that effort today with the creepy, crawly Bug-Types, and our team has thought long and hard to determine which ten creatures from this group we adore the most.
So then, let’s get started with our Top Ten Bug-Type Pokémon!
“Over 300 million years ago, it was feared as the strongest of hunters. It has been modified by Team Plasma.”
— Pokémon Black Version
Serving as the only Bug-Type Mythical/Legendary Pokémon in the series, Genesect is an ancient creature which was revived and modified by Team Plasma of the Unova region. The only modifications specified by the Pokédex involve them upgrading the cannon on its back, but its robotic appearance suggests that they may also have worked on aspects of this creature. Either way, its cannon is definitely useful, as it can be outfitted with different drives to alter the Typing of its signature move, Techno Blast, making Genesect a possible threat against a wide variety of foes.
“They employ an electrically charged web to trap their prey. While it is immobilized by shock, they leisurely consume it.”
— Pokémon White Version
The only dual-typed Bug/Electric Pokémon—at least until Gen VII brings us Charjabug and Vikavolt—Galvantula is an arachnid with only four legs and the power to generate electrically-charged webbing. Its Typings work together to cancel out a fair number of their individual weaknesses, as well as to give rise to its specialty move Electroweb, an attack only it and its pre-evolution, Joltik, can learn through leveling up. The move slows opponents, and in nature it allows Galvantula to take its time as it eats its prey alive. Which is a bit dark, but hey, no one said these Bugs were friendly.
“It slashes through grass with its sharp scythes, moving too fast for the human eye to track.”
— Pokémon Gold Version
One of the original Bug-Types from Generation I, Scyther is of course best identified by the twin scythe blades that make up its forearms and hands, weapons which can slice through thick logs in a single swing and which is continuously sharpens by cutting through harder and harder materials. Taking after the praying mantis, Scyther also has ninja-like speed and reflexes along with natural camouflage in the tall grass, making this a relatively hard-to-find creature that we all grew up loving. Plus, even though it doesn’t use its wings all that often, it can still learn some solid Flying-Type attacks, just adding that little bit of extra appeal in battle.
“It grips prey with its pincers until the prey is torn in half. What it can’t tear, it tosses far.”
— Pokémon Diamond & Pearl Versions
Designed after stag beetles, Pinsir is a large bug with some massive horns growing from its head that serve as pincers for anything that gets on their bad side. As its horns are far stronger than any of its other limbs, these are its primary implements for battle as well as more common tasks like digging a burrow for the night. Its pincers grab enemies and try to tear them in half; if it can’t manage this, it can still hurl them aside with ease. Come Gen VI, Pinsir also gained a Mega Evolution that granted it fully developed wings to go with its newly added Flying-Typing.
“When volcanic ash darkened the atmosphere, it is said that Volcarona’s fire provided a replacement for the sun.”
— Pokémon Black Version
Volcarona is the evolution of Larvesta, appearing as a giant, moth-like Pokémon with fiery red wings to match up with its partial Fire-Typing. Known as the Sun Pokémon, in ancient times, when volcanic ash was thick enough to block out the sun, the fiery scales from its wings were said to have burned bright and hot enough to help life survive through the bitterly cold winter that followed. Volcarona’s power shines through its signature Fiery Dance move, which it only learns upon reaching level 100; it deals some solid damage and half the time will boost Volcarona’s Special Attack, which is always a great bonus for Fire-Types.
“A peculiar Pokémon that floats in air even though its wings remain completely still. The inside of its body is hollow and utterly dark.”
— Pokémon Emerald Version
Calling Shedinja “peculiar” is putting it lightly, but that’s the term that the Pokédex seems most fond of using for this creature. A Bug/Ghost-Type, Shedinja comes into being when Nincada evolves into Ninjask; if the trainer has an extra Poké Ball in their inventory at this time and less than six creatures in their party, the skin shed from Nincada comes to life and is automatically added to your team. It can only have 1 HP, but its unique Wonder Guard ability makes it immune to any attacks not dealt by a Super Effective Type, making it unable to be harmed by moves of thirteen of the eighteen Types. It’s definitely a niche Pokémon that requires a good strategy to use effectively, but its unique attributes
really makes Shedinja stand out from all others.
“It has 3 poisonous stingers on its forelegs and its tail. They are used to jab its enemy repeatedly.”
— Pokémon Yellow Version
Hailing from the early routes of the very first generation of games, Beedrill is the final evolution of Weedle, the little bug we all feared during our first trip through Viridian Forest on account of its ability to inflict our partners with devastating poison. Catching one for ourselves and evolving it into Beedrill was always a delight, though, as it let us use that poison to our advantage instead. Beedrill is fiercely territorial and will all swarm anyone who intrudes on their turf, using poisonous strikes and its once-signature move Twineedle to make their targets pay. It becomes even more fierce-looking as Mega Beedrill, with its stingers becoming more like lances, an extra two of which appear on its lower limbs to maximize the pain it can bring.
“In battle, it flaps its wings at high speed to release highly toxic dust into the air.”
— Pokémon Red & Blue Versions
While Weedle was the Bug we all feared to face on our first trips through Kanto, Caterpie was an easy capture for many of us, and its evolution into the beautiful Butterfree quickly made it a strong companion—especially as it gained the Psychic-Type Confusion attack, an incredibly potent move for such an early point in our adventure. It followed that up with the ability to inflict status conditions with Sleep Powder, Poison Powder, and Stun Spore, furthering its combat potential. While we usually switched it out for something more powerful as time went on, Butterfree’s contributions and usefulness to us in those early days and battles are something we never forgot.
We’d of course be remiss if we failed to mention Ash’s own Butterfree from the anime; watching his Bug grow and evolve along with him as a trainer was great, and his decision to release Butterfree was one of the most heart-wrenching farewells in many of our young lives at the time. It certainly served to make our own Butterfly Pokémon all the more memorable. Throw in all of the solid Bug-Type attacks that have released since that first generation, in addition to extra moves Butterfree gains as a Flying-Type, and it’s still a pretty useful Pokémon even now.
“Heracross charges in a straight line at its foe, slips beneath the foe’s grasp, and then scoops up and hurls the opponent with its mighty horn. This Pokémon even has enough power to topple a massive tree.”
— Pokémon Ruby Version
A number of solid Bug-Type Pokémon were introduced in the second generation of games, but only a few stood out as much as the mighty Heracross. Designed after the rhinoceros beetle, this creature’s most prominent feature is the horn growing from its forehead, which also serves as its primary method of attacking—it charges enemies and either bludgeons them with its horn or uses it to pick up and hurl its foes away. Heracross is exceptionally strong and its horn exceptionally sturdy, as it can lift up to 100 times this Pokémon’s own weight with ease. Its entire body is designed to maximize the effectiveness of these horn attacks, with its large build and the claws on its feet serving to anchor it whenever it chooses to throw something.
Heracross is the only Bug/Fighting-Type Pokémon known so far, and at least for the second generation it was the only one capable of using Megahorn, a mighty Bug-Type attack that made it especially useful against Psychics and the newly introduced Dark-Type. It seems a peaceful creature at most times, but an angered Heracross is not something you want to encounter. Even more dangerous is its new Mega Evolution, which significantly alters Heracross’ horn into more of a spiky shape perfect for stabbing opponents rather than throwing them. Some of us like the Mega, some of us don’t, but many of us adore Heracross no matter what form it takes.
But what Bug is the best of them all? Which creature gives even the mighty Heracross a run for its money? In our opinion, there is only one capable of that honor:
“This Pokémon’s pincers, which contain steel, can crush any hard object it gets a hold of into bits.”
— Pokémon Crystal Version
Known either as the Scissors or the Pincer Pokémon, depending on the generation, Scizor evolves from Scyther when the latter is traded while holding a Metal Coat, which already spells trouble for us as that tends to put it in direct competition with Onix to see which one we’ll choose to evolve. While we’ve not yet decided whether we like Scizor or Steelix more, we do know that the Scizor is certainly our favorite Bug-Type, with a gorgeous crimson coat mixed with some interesting lore that is lived out through the gameplay.
According to the Pokédex, Scizor’s claws are not merely powerful enough to crush anything in their grasp; their decorations appear like eyes to other creatures, and by waving the claws around it gives off the appearance that Scizor has three heads, scaring off would-be predators. Additionally, while it has wings, its steel body is no longer capable of flight; it instead uses these wings to regulate its body temperature. This all gets reflected in-game by the dropping of Scyther’s partial Flying-Type in exchange for Steel-Type attributes—it can no longer fly,
and it has a pretty big issue with heat. Aside from its rather hefty weakness to Fire-Type attacks, however, any other Type will only deal standard amounts of damage at best, as the Bug- and Steel-pairing cancels out all other weaknesses. Couple it all with powerful moves of both Types like X-Scissor or Iron Head and you’ve got a pretty amazing Pokémon at your side.
Scizor may not be perfect—its Mega Evolution, for instance, never really seemed all that appealing to us—but it’s a powerful fighter with an awesome design that we just adore. Scyther was great, but its evolved form definitely takes the cake in our book and proceeds to knock down all other challengers. We’re happy, then, to name Scizor as our number one favorite Bug-Type Pokémon.
Well, that does it for the Bug-Types! How did you enjoy our selections? Did we get all the interesting trivia tidbits in there, or is there something we forgot? Or maybe there’s a completely different Bug that you think deserves a mention all its own? Head down to the comments to share such thoughts with us! And either way, don’t forget to drop by again tomorrow for another Top Ten list of a different Pokémon type!
And be sure to check out the rest of our Top Ten Type Pokémon lists: