The Good Moves
Generally speaking, Fire Spin is the gold-standard for Fire Type Fast Moves. It’s the move of choice for many of the top Fire Type attackers, and it definitely deserves the title given its solid stats. However, it’s not the top Fire Type Fast Move, as Fire Fang tends to out-pace Fire Spin most of the time. Despite having a lower base power and lower energy generated per use, Fire Fang’s speed allows it to have a higher DPS and an energy generation that’s just slightly below Fire Spin, so Pokemon with access to both will tend to stick with Fire Fang. Moving on, we come to a doozy of an attack; Incinerate. This Fast Move has the highest base power of any Fast Move in the game, to the point where it’s actually stronger than a few Charged Moves. It’s also got very high energy generation per use, ranked 2nd in the game alongside Gust, Ice Fang, Present, and Splash, and surpassed only by Volt Switch. So how could this monster of a move possibly fall below Fire Spin and Fire Fang? It can because it holds one other record currently; the slowest Fast Move in the game. Executing a single Incinerate takes 2.3 seconds, which is more than double the execution time of Fire Spin, so it actually tends to fall behind a bit in terms of actual performance. Oh, and forget dodging when you’re locked into a Fast Move that lasts an eternity to fully execute. Incinerate is best utilized by bulky attackers like Ho-oh that can tank hits and keep firing back, and even then it’s best classified as “usable” as it is substantially weaker than the big-two, but it’s still enough to make some Fire Type attackers acceptable. Honestly, it BARELY gets a pass here, and primarily because it’s one of the moves that finally made Ho-oh decent.
For Charged Moves, we have to start with V-Create, the signature move of Victini and the strongest Fire Type Charged Move in the entire game to date. This attack mixes power and flexibility, making it the move that any Fire Type would want, but its extremely limited distribution means we probably won’t see it take the top ranks any time soon, or rather at all. Next up is Fusion Flare, which is the move that really put Reshiram back on the map. Again, this is a move with pretty limited distribution, so it’s unlikely to spread far beyond what we have now, but it’s still objectively great. Following that is Blast Burn, the signature move of all Fire Type starters. It’s another genuinely powerful move and is strong enough to make many starters viable despite lower stats. After Blast Burn is Sacred Fire+, which is a great move for anyone lucky enough to have a good Apex Shadow Ho-oh. Next up is Weather Ball Fire, which is a strong and versatile move…. that basically no Fire Types actually learn. And then we come to Overheat, which is the gold-standard of the type. It’s the strongest Fire Type Charged Move with general distribution, making it the move of choice for a great many Pokemon. After that are Blaze Kick and Mystical Fire, which are great moves… but they have to directly compete with Blast Burn on the only two Pokemon that can currently learn them, so they’re not going to see much utility in practice. We follow that up with the other move that made Ho-oh good, the basic version of Sacred Fire. Despite being weaker than the + variant, it’s still a solid move that puts in good work and keeps Ho-oh relevant moving forward. After that, we finish up this side of the list with Flamethrower, which is the borderline move of the type. Flamethrower is the Fire Type equivalent to moves like Thunderbolt and Ice Beam, and is just good enough to keep Pokemon like Heatran from falling into total obscurity. It’s not a good move, but it’s serviceable.
The Bad Moves
When it comes to the bad Fast Moves, we come at last to Ember. And… It’s pretty unremarkable. Its overall attack profile is pretty unappealing, and it just doesn’t have many saving graces. Honestly, an argument can be made that it’s better than Incinerate due to the fact that it only has a slightly lower DPS, but at least it’s possible to dodge with it. But Ember didn’t help to save Ho-oh from obscurity, now did it? And just when you thought that we’d hit the bottom of the barrel, Hidden Power (Fire) is here again. And as usual, it’s really underwhelming. You roll the dice for this move, and if you happen to get it on a Pokemon that may actually want it, it generally won’t be enough to push said Pokemon into viability.
The Charged move list starts with Fire Blast. Despite being iconic in the main series, this move got a bad treatment in Pokemon Go, and is one of the moves that Pokemon genuinely don’t want to see in their moveset. From here, we have Fire Punch, Flame Burst, Heat Wave, Flame Wheel, and Flame Charge, all of which are disappointing moves for any Fire Type. “But wait!”, I see some of the more eagle-eyed readers already getting ready to type. “You’ve missed a couple of Charged Moves on the list!”. Well, these moves weren’t missed so much as reserved a special place in this section just for them! First is Techno Blast (Burn), which is a great move that gets relegated down here due to the lack of Pokemon that ever have a chance of utilizing it. And second is Sacred Fire++, strictly because no Ho-oh should ever, ever have this move! Seriously; do not purify your Apex Shadows! In no way is having “++” on the move able to compete with the sheer power Shadow Boost combined with a single “+”!.