Smash Ultimate Best Characters 2019 [Smash Ultimate Tier List]

Smash Ultimate Best Characters
Trying to pick your main for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate? Look no further.

Which fighters in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate reignsupreme?

When it comes to fighting games, a large part of the culture stems from the competitive scene. If you’re reading this, it’s likely you’re interested in diving into the world of competitive Super Smash Bros. If that’s the case, there’s no better place to start than choosing a ‘main’ or a character you’d like to direct your focus towards.

Luckily for you, we’ve put together a who’s who of the game so you’ll have no trouble making the switch from all items on, to final destination, 3 stocks each.

S-Tier (Without a doubt, the best bet for securing a win. Combining excellent neutral game, with high potential for combos, these well rounded characters have little to no downside)

  • Inkling: 97/100
  • Pichu: 95/100
  • Daisy/Peach: 94/100
  • Lucina: 92/100
  • Olimar: 90/100
  • Fox: 89/100
  • Greninja: 88.5/100

A-Tier (Very solid characters all around, likely possess some sort of downside preventing them from being considered S-tier)

  • Marth: 88/100
  • Pikachu: 87.5/100
  • Cloud: 87/100
  • Chrom/Roy: 86/100
  • Wolf: 84/100
  • Young Link: 83:100
  • Joker: 82/100
  • Snake: 81/100
  • Simon/Richter: 80/100
  • Pokemon Trainer: 80/100
  • Falco: 78/100
  • Zero Suit Samus: 77/100
  • Link: 75/100
  • Palutena: 74/100

B-Tier (Generally usable in competitive play. However, due to no significant upside over characters higher on this list, you wouldn’t be at an advantage picking any of these characters. Here the rankings become slightly less clear so I’ve grouped them into sub-categories in no particular order)

  • B+ (73-68)

    • Ike
    • Corrin
    • Lucas
    • Ness
    • Mewtwo
    • Toon Link
    • ROB
    • Shulk
  • B (67-61)
    • Ryu/Ken
    • Zelda
    • Donkey Kong
    • Diddy Kong
    • Wario
    • Sonic
  • B- (60-55)
    • Megaman
    • Mario
    • Dr. Mario
    • Meta Knight
    • Yoshi

C-Tier (54-46) (Not viable in competitive play unless you’ve put in excess hours labbing them. Could be moved up with patch updates)

  • Bayonetta
  • Dark Pit/Pit
  • Mii Brawler
  • Lucario
  • Pac-Man
  • Luigi
  • Rosalina

D-Tier (46-38) (There are significant holes in these characters’ games preventing them from being competitive. Generally stay away from these picks.)

  • Bowser
  • Captain Falcon
  • Dark Samus/Samus
  • Villager
  • Ice Climbers
  • Sheik
  • Ganondorf
  • Wii Fit Trainer

E-Tier (37-29) (If this character is in here, it’s likely extremely limited in a very essential quality, and lacks strength in other areas to compensate)

  • Mii Swordfighter
  • Mii Gunner
  • Ridley
  • King K. Rool
  • Incineroar
  • Piranha Plant
  • Isabelle
  • Mr. Game & Watch
  • Duck Hunt
  • Robin
  • King Dedede

F-Tier (<29) (Just don’t bother with these unless you’re looking to embarrass someone or yourself)

  • Bowser Jr.
  • Little Mac
  • Kirby
  • Jigglypuff

-A Tier-

21. Palutena (A-Tier)

Palutena fans, it’s your time to rejoice. After an era of mediocrity in Smash 4, Palutena has been rejuvenated as a viable character. This is in large part due to the replacement of her side special. Formerly a simple reflection, this special is now a remote explosive flame. This change makes Palutena much more successful in the edge guarding and spacing departments, catapulting her into low A-tier.

Strengths

  • Spacing
  • Aerials
  • Edgeguarding

20. Link (A-Tier)

Beyond merely an aesthetic change, what this version of link brings is an entirely new take on the character. Through previous iterations of the series, he’s remained relatively consistent. The developers have flipped the script this time around, and given Link some upgrades. Namely, his classic down special, the bomb throw, can now be detonated at will. This makes it much easier to use the bomb to propel him back to the stage.

Strengths

  • Projectiles
  • Spacing
  • Kill Moves

19. Zero Suit Samus (A-Tier)

Since her debut in Brawl, Zero Suit has maintained stable standing as a high tier character due to her prolific air game, speed, and set ups via stun gun, or grab. Her consecutive up-airs into up special are not as convenient a combo as they once were, yet they’ll still get the job done more often than not.

Strengths

  • Strings
  • Aerials
  • Combos

18. Falco (A-Tier)

As his catchphrase goes, Falco prefers the air. With the highest jump in the game, compiled with an excellent recovery, and strong aerials, he’s an ideal fit for those looking to expand their offstage game. One thing setting him back from higher characters on this list is his lack of speed.

Strengths

  • Aerials
  • Smash Attacks
  • Recovery

 

17. Pokemon Trainer (A-Tier)

At 17 we have the swiss army knife of Smash Ultimate, Pokemon Trainer. A fan favorite from Brawl, Pokemon Trainer’s return comes with significant upgrades. Gone is the irksome stamina system forcing the player to switch despite a favorable matchup. In its place is a character with an option for every stage of the game, and one capable of orienting towards any matchup. This character requires a lot of practice, but the payoff is worth it.

Strengths

  • Versatility
  • Strings
  • Lagless character switching
  • Kill moves

16. Simon/Richter (A-Tier)

At 16 we have somewhat of a hot take. The duo from Castlevania have been met with starkly polarizing opinions across forums, threads, comment sections alike. Many have criticized their awful recoveries and unimpressive speed. However, due to their elite spacing and wide projectile variety, I’ve opted to place them this high.

Strengths

  • Spacing
  • Edgeguarding
  • Anti-aerial moves
  • Kill moves

15. Snake (A-Tier)

Now, with this selection, I need to clarify something. I’m aware of the many pros of Snake including but not limited to: unparalleled zoning, no shortage of kill set-ups, etc. However, this character requires an extremely high skill level to be effective. Otherwise, the player can be subjected to easy punishes, and awkward offense.

Strengths

  • Zone based offense
  • Setting up kill traps
  • Recovery

14. Joker (A-Tier)

Joker is the second DLC fighter to be added to Smash Ultimate. Given the recentness of his addition, I’ve had difficulty assessing just how he fits into the competitive meta. That being said, my first impressions are quite good. Joker is extremely fast, and has decent kill power. Despite this, a drawback is his overreliance on the presence of his persona, Arsene.

Strengths

  • Speed
  • Aerials
  • Arsene

13. Young Link (A-Tier)

What Young Link brings to the table is a lighter, and faster version of Link, with arguably greater killing potential than Toon Link. His wide arsenal of projectiles can make for various combos, and kill set-ups. However, his weight can be problematic, as he can die quite early in his stock, and may have difficulty taking care of heavier characters.

Strengths

  • Projectiles
  • Combos
  • Edgeguarding
  • Kill setups

 

12. Wolf (A-Tier)

Wolf has bounced back from his Brawl mediocrity in a big way. In the latest installment, Sakurai has blessed the Star Fox villain with a number of buffs. These buffs have resulted in Wolf having one of the strongest neutrals in the game. His calling card is his side special, which, at the sweet spot, can not only spike, but deal devastating damage as well.

Strengths

  • Neutral game
  • Aerials
  • Specials

11. Chrom/Roy (A-Tier)

Yes, yes, I know these characters are slightly different in their movesets. However, I couldn’t for the life of me find a way to put one above the other, as they both bring similar strengths to the table. Both provide nice range due to their swords. Additionally, they boast absurd strength without being as sluggish as Ike. Poor recoveries keep them from being higher on this list.

Strengths

  • High kill power
  • Speed
  • Aerial strings

10. Cloud (A-Tier)

A large part of what made Cloud so broken in Smash 4 was his limit ability. The ability to supercharge one of your specials for an explosive finish. In what is perhaps the largest nerf in the game, Cloud’s limit only lasts 15 seconds before it disappears. Despite this, Cloud compensates through exceptional speed, kill potential, and ease of use.

Strengths

  • Speed
  • Absurd strength
  • Various kill moves
  • LIMIT

9. Pikachu (A-Tier)

The lovable mascot of the Pokemon franchise sits proud at number 8 due to top tier speed, and offensive variety. Pikachu comes equipped with efficient aerials that are extremely useful for combos, and playing offstage. Pikachu’s glaring weakness is its difficulty closing out stocks, as well as its low weight, making it easy to take out.

Strengths

  • Strings/Combos
  • Speed
  • Edgeguarding

8. Marth (A-Tier)

Marth is a character that requires a lot of skill and practice to be effective. Nevertheless, if given enough dedication, Marth can be an amazing go-to choice in the competitive scene. Marth’s sword allows for him to space effectively, and the tipper mechanic can make it possible to take off opposing stocks early, creating insurmountable leads. His aerials make for great neutral, and hit strings.

Strengths

  • Spacing
  • Neutral game
  • Tipper mechanic

-S Tier-

7. Greninja (S-Tier)

For years Greninja mains all over the globe have been forced to endure the torment of peers in the community. At a certain point it became almost comical how often Greninja had been nerfed, for seemingly no apparent reason. Fortunately for them, Smash Ultimate has revitalized the character, who, due to his speed, evasiveness, and strong string game, is a lock for top tier in the current meta.

Strengths

  • Neutral game
  • Aerials
  • Speed
  • Combos

6. Fox (S-Tier)

The face of the Star Fox franchise has been a staple in the competitive meta since his glory days in Super Smash Bros. Melee. What’s made him incredible in previous iterations is just as present in Smash’s latest. With quick, early-frame aerials, strong neutral game, and no shortage of combos, Fox will be a force to be reckoned with at any tournament.

Strengths

  • Viable kill moves
  • Aerials
  • Neutral game
  • Specials

 

5. Olimar (S-Tier)

Playing with Olimar is like playing a game of chess, it requires a large amount of focus, and calculated thought. Many casual fans of the game view Olimar as the joke character of the game; a character so bad, it’s entertaining. However, if used correctly, Olimar can easily decimate nearly any character in the game. This is due to his ability to quickly rack up damage via his Pikmin, and finish stocks with his far reaching smash attacks. Elite spacing aside, without the Pikmin, Olimar can find himself struggling in more close range matchups.

Strengths

  • Accumulating damage
  • Kill moves
  • Combos
  • Recovery

4. Lucina (S-Tier)

Now, seeing as how I grouped together every other echo pair in this list, you may be wondering why I put Lucina so much higher than Marth. For those of you who don’t know, the main difference between the two is that Marth has a sweet spot on the edge of his sword, while Lucina’s sword deals more consistent damage throughout. The increased pace of the game, and the increased focus on rushing your opponent has left Lucina a more viable option than Marth.

Strengths

  • The better Marth
  • Aerials
  • Strings

3. Daisy/Peach (S-Tier)

This duo has earned a top 3 spot mainly due to their elite air combos. While sometimes difficult to set up, it’s absurd just how many ways there are to combo into, or out of nearly all 5 of their aerials. On top of that, they pack some of the best edgeguarding tools in the entire roster. These characters are extremely well rounded, however I don’t recommend them if you’re just picking up the game for the first time.

Strengths

  • Projectile based combos
  • Aerials
  • Edgeguarding
  • Combos

2. Pichu (S-Tier)

At number 2 we have a bit of a wildcard. Pichu was a difficult character to rank because, while extremely strong and fast, it’s one of the most vulnerable characters in the game. If you don’t know, Pichu has a mechanic that causes self damage upon using electric moves. This drawback, coupled with the fact that Pichu is one of the lightest in the game, makes him the definition of a glass cannon. While he can kill with ease, he can also be killed just as easily. If you have a knack for evasion, then Pichu’s expansive offensive game will surely be a good fit for you.

Strengths

  • Strength
  • Speed
  • Strings/Combos
  • Overall offense

1. Inkling (S-Tier)

Inkling is one of my personal favorites in the whole roster, and definitely my favorite of the newcomers, so far. The reason I’ve given Inkling the coveted spot as the best fighter in the game is due to the lack of a true hole in its game. Inkling is one of the fastest in the game, has great air mobility, has a good edgeguarding projectile, and the list goes on. The roller is extremely difficult to stop, and if landed is a surefire KO at high percentages. Additionally, Inkling’s rapid aerials make for great strings, and can rack up damage quickly. The only possible flaw I see in Inkling’s game, is potential difficulty against spacers, and difficulty of use. Despite this, Inkling is, in my opinion, the best character in the game.

Strengths

  • Speed
  • Specials
  • Aerials
  • Combos
  • Kill set-ups

 

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From the icy peaks of Salt Lake City to the urban jungle that is Atlanta, Georgia, Yazan has lived a life defined by his passion for storytelling and video games. Join him as he seeks to unite them.
Gamer Since: 2004
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