With the current airing of the anime Digimon Ghost Game and the recent release of the video game Digimon Survive, the worlds of Digimon have been reinvigorated in 2022. Now twenty-five years old, the history of the Digimon franchise means there are hundreds of unique Digital Monsters, all with their charms.
When it comes to the very best Digimon, though, there are a few important points to take into account, including a character’s strength, personality, and memorability within the franchise. Whether they’re heroic main characters or distinctive villains, the best Digimon brings something special to the Digital World and beyond.
Guilmon is a red dinosaur-like Digimon who first appeared onscreen in Digimon Tamers, becoming the partner to human protagonist Takato, who designed and created him in the series premiere episode.
Although Guilmon can be a ferocious fighter, his usual personality is a fun-loving and curious one, and he is very protective of those he cares about. Guilmon’s character development during Tamers is compelling to watch, as he goes from a naive young Digimon unsure of the world to an integral part of Takato’s life, and the Tamers team.
Devimon is the first major villain that the DigiDestined and their Digimon partners face in the original Digimon Adventure show, and after an arc that sees the heroes face off against many of Devimon’s minions, their final battle has big consequences, leading to the temporary death of Angemon.
Devimon plays an important role in Digimon Adventure because he shows the DigiDestined that the Digital World can be a dark and dangerous place, and through facing him, they gain a greater understanding of the realm they’ve stumbled into, and of the kind of powers that Digimon—both good and evil—can possess.
One of the best original Digimon from Digimon Adventure, Gabumon is the partner to DigiDestined Matt (also known as Yamato in the original Japanese). Matt and Gabumon develop an extremely close bond and constantly stick up for one another throughout the show, even when nobody else will.
In addition to his loyal personality, Gabumon has a fantastic evolution line, leading to other fan-favorite Digimon like Garurumon and WereGarurumon. Never afraid to go against the majority, Gabumon’s quiet strength makes him a perfect counterpart to Matt.
It’s a dramatic moment in Digimon Tamers when Impmon finally Digivolves into Beelzemon, and the wait is most definitely worth it, as he soon becomes an antagonist to the Tamers and their partners after killing Leomon.
Beelzemon’s story is not a one of a straightforward villain, though, as he ultimately comes to see the error of his ways. Instead, it’s this moral complexity, combined with his impressive powers, that makes Beelzemon such a great character.
Leomon first appears in Digimon Adventure, but a version of the character also has significant screen time in Tamers, and in both instances, he is a powerful and courageous Digimon that assists the series’ heroes before being tragically killed.
This all changed in Digimon Adventure’s 2020 reboot, though. Although it is considered by many Digimon fans to be one of the worst anime reboots, the decision to allow Leomon to survive was a welcome and surprising change for many, making room for the character to be used far more, where previously his time was cut short.
The cool and collected Renamon is partnered with Rika in Digimon Tamers, and even though the two start the series with a distanced relationship, they slowly come to care for each other as they continue to fight together, and interact with the other Tamers.
It’s complex characters like Renamon that helped Digimon Tamers to have one of the best genre deconstructions in anime, taking the franchise in a more serious direction tone-wise, and exploring darker themes all while holding onto the essence of what Digimon is all about at its core.
A later addition to Digimon Adventure, Gatomon (also known as Tailmon) starts as a potential adversary for the show’s protagonists, before becoming the Digimon partner of the eighth DigiDestined, Kari Kamiya.
Gatomon is a unique Digimon partner because unlike the other Digimon protagonists, who are Rookies, she is a Champion level, granting her greater strength in her usual form. These abilities are also seen when Gatomon Digivolves into Angewomon, an angelic being with immense powers.
The companion to Takeru (or T.K.) first introduced in Digimon Adventure, Patamon is a flying Digimon with a youthful personality that makes him a great match to the youngest of the DigiDestined, and the pair grow alongside one another as their story progresses.
Despite his small size and sometimes fearful personality, Patamon is also very brave, as seen in the way that he defends T.K. even before he gains the ability to Digivolve into the far more powerful Angemon. This fighting spirit and inner potential make Patamon a highly memorable character.
Digimon is an anime that has many spin-off movies, and it was in one of these, released in the US as Digimon: The Movie, that Omnimon (also called Omegamon) debuted in the franchise.
A fusion of Tai’s WarGreymon and Matt’s MetalGarurumon, Omnimon has a vast skillset that combines the best elements of both Digimon it’s made from. A figure who represents the heroism of the Digital World, Omnimon is often considered one of the most powerful Digimon ever. Furthermore, his creation brings protagonists Matt and Tai closer together.
If there’s a single Digimon that’s come to represent the franchise as a whole, it’s Agumon. First seen in Digimon Adventure as Tai’s partner, iterations of the character have appeared in other series like Digimon Data Squad and more recently in video games like Digimon Survive.
With courage that matches Tai’s, a visually memorable evolution line, and a wish to do right by others, Agumon is a true hero of the series. Acting as both a comedic and serious character when the situation calls for it, and with a range of powerful forms, Agumon is truly the best Digimon character.
NEXT: Sorting The Digimon DigiDestined Into Their Hogwarts Houses