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I'm playing Pokemon firered and don't know whether to get hitmonchan or not, because if the 3 elemental punches are physical I will get him, if they are special I won't, I keep getting all different answers to whether the 3 elemental punches are physical or special attacks

So are the 3 elemental punches physical or special attacks for FIRERED?

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Due to this, hitmonchan was pretty much a worthless pokemon until generation 4. At least in generation one it was, maybe it learned some better moves in gen 3.
before gen 4, all moves that shared a type also shared a category. ice, fire, and electric were all special.

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Those are all Special in Gen 3, I'm afraid. Sorry!

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Alakazam's favorite generation....
Okay so what are they for Pokemon platinum
In Platinum, the punches are physical, as they are in every Gen IV game.