Blue received somewhat of a reincarnation with Trace (Image via Game Freak)

Top 5 rivals in Pokemon history

A good rival can be one of the best parts of any Pokemon game. Competitors have seen many interpretations in the franchise history, from helpful buddies (Hop, Hau) to entitled snobs (Blue, Silver).

Sometimes there’s even more than one (there are about five in Pokemon X and Y). They all present different challenges to players, and some are much more challenging than others.


Which Pokemon rivals were the toughest to face?

5) Gladion


When it comes to Generation VII, Gladion is much more of a rival than Hau is. The latter picks a starter that users have a type advantage against and doesn’t do much more than that (other than eat salads).


Gladion is much more of an antagonist to gamers. At first, his team looks a little weak, but once Type: Null evolves, Silvally will have a type advantage against the player’s starter, making him much more challenging.

4) Wally


Out of all of the rivals in the franchise, Wally probably gets the least amount of screen time. Due to his illness, he really is only around to catch Ralts and battle the player a couple of times.

What makes Wally a good rival, though, is how he levels up for the Victory Road fight. In Omega Ruby and Alpha Sapphire, Wally gets three huge threats in Altaria, Magnezone, and Mega Gallade.

3) Silver


This is another rival that isn’t in the story for too long, but he makes an impact when he is. From the moment he steals a starter from Professor Elm, players see that making friends really isn’t a priority for Silver.

Outside of using a start with a type advantage, Silver also ends up with a Gengar, Alakazam, Magnezone, and Crobat. Silver also challenges users by battling at difficult moments, like in the middle of the Goldenrod Radio Tower mission.

2) Barry


As opposed to some of the other rivals on this list, Barry shows up a lot. Besides being a central part of the game’s prologue, he seems to pop up in between every Gym. Since he sees the player so frequently, though, he battles a lot.

His Pokemon also get threatening pretty fast, with a Focus Sash Staraptor and Expert Belt Infernape by the game’s end.

1) Blue


The one who started it all might have been the best of them all. Beyond the nostalgia, though, Blue sets a high standard for rivals. Arguably no rival battle has been more challenging than his Championship battle at the end of Kanto.

His icy personality may give the character depth, but it’s the potency of his Pokemon team that puts Blue at number one.

Note: This article is subjective and solely reflects the writer's opinions.

Edited by
Ravi Iyer
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