Everybody who has heard of Smash Bros knows that the best part about this game is its multiplayer mode. The multiplayer mode lets up to four players, cpu or human, to battle it out in an selected arena. Refer to the the basics page or your game manual if you don't know how to access and manipulate the rules of the multiplayer mode. This page covers strategies for certain battle scenerios that might occur during the frantic battles between players. Most of the strategies are just common sense, but there are some stuff in here that you might learn.
Free for All Strategies
There are two basic rules of the multiplayer game: stock and time. These rules determine how the game plays out and how the winner is determined. For a recap, in stock mode, each player have a set amount of lives and every time a player gets KOed, he/she loses a live/stock. The last person left standing is the winner. In time mode, the game goes on for a set amount of time. At the end of the match, all the KOs a player got is subtracted by the times he/she has been killed by other player to give a points total. The player who has the highest point total wins. If there is a tie, the winner of the sudden death match gets the title. Because of the differences between these two modes, different strategies should applied to each mode.
In a stock game, the only thing you have to do to win is survive. You don't actually have to KO a lot of people in order to win, which means you don't need to actively participate in the fight, especially during free for alls (in team battles, you should go help your partner). Here are some strategies you should use.
- Just casually move around on the stage, delivering hits here and there if you see chances.
- Don't avoid all contacts with the enemies, especially against humans since humans will notice your evasive manners and start going after you to force participation.
- Do avoid getting caught in the middle of a big fight since there's a good chance that your character will be comboed and sustain a lot of damage.
- If you are with some human players who don't like each other, verbally persuade them to go after each other while you stand around and watch.
- Human players will also come after you when they've noticed that you have significantly more stock than they have. In this case, you'll just have to use your Smash skills and teach them a lesson, or you'll get killed.
In a time game, however, you have to participate since you have to KO people to earn points in order to win. This doesn't mean that you can just go all out and abandon your own safety because other people can still benefit from KOing you. This is the reason why time mode is more of a challenge for new players than stock mode, since you have make kills but avoid getting killed at the same time while in stock mode, you just have to survive and you win. Here's some pointers to help you out.
- As with a stock match, avoid being caught in the middle of a big brawl because you'll probably get caught up by hit after hit and sustain more damage than you can afford. Instead, when people are brawling, sneak up on them and then find an opportunity to get a power hit in. If you are someone with a really powerful attack like DK or Falcon, this is the easiest way to land those big hits and you can get multiple KOs in the process. Of course, you should expect some retailiation when playing against humans if you do this.
- Go after opponents with a lot of damage on them to get easy KOs. Remember though, this is considered cheap play and doing this over and over again will entice other human players to gang up on you. If you are just playing against comps, then do this whenever you want.
- Go after an opponent who you know is significantly weaker than you. This will give you some easier kills than fighting a more skilled opponent.
- A very easy and cheap way to rack up kills is to steal other people's KOs. If an opponent is trying to edge guard another opponent, hit the edge guarder away and now you got your own edge guarding opportunity. If your character has a projectile handy, you can hit people who are probably not going to make it back to claim a KO. You can also intercept someone who looks like is going to be knocked out with your own move to get a point. You can steal as many KOs as you want from cpu players and they probably won't do much but this practice can infuriate other human players.
- Consequently, you'll need to watch your back during free for alls. Other players will try to sneak up behind you while you're preoccupied and try to steal your kill or worse, try to KO you.
- If your character has sustained a lot of damage, like over 100%, consider commiting suicide (I don't mean you. I mean your character). Even though you'll lose a point for dying, at least someone else won't gain a point for you death.
One on One Matches
Well, there aren't any special strategies for mano à mano matches. You'll just have to be more skilled and also luckier than your opponent to win. Remember to combo, edge guard and spike if you can. Also grab all the good items when they appear. If you want some character specific one on one strategies, read the appropriate character guide on this site; get stage strategies by reading the stage guides; and get the item strategies from the item guide.
Two on Two Team Battles
Two on two battle is one of the best way to fight it out in Smash in my opinion. You'll have to work with a teammate to defeat the other team. When playing team battles, stock mode is usually the rule of choice for some unknown reason, so the strategies are mostly based on the stock match rule. If you don't do your share for your team, then your team will probably lose. Below are some strategies I've come up through the years (well, more like months) I've been playing Smash.
- Communicate with your partner, if he/she is human. Talk to your teammate if you are desperately needing help or if you want to do a two person combo on one of your opponents.
- Focus on one opponent at a time. You'll be able KO your opponents faster this way. If one opponent is noticeably weaker tha the other, than go after the weaker opponent. This strategy will enable you to kill one opponent first so your team will have a favourable two on one situation.
- Seperate your opponents. Knock one of them one way and the other way the opposite direction. Your team will then have a easier time ganging up on one opponent while the other enemy is still just to get back into the fight. This will also prevent your enemies from pulling off two person combos.
- You and your partner should try to stick together. You two have greater firepower as a whole than as individuals and being close to each other will not let the other team get two on one situations.
- You and your partner should coordinate your attacks. In most cases, attacking one after another is better than both of you attacking at once. Usually, one teammate should hit first while the other teammate stand a little bit behind the first. In this formation, the person in the back can easily go up and hit the target while the partner recovers, so the team can deliver a steady stream of blows. If the person standing in front gets hit, the person standing behind will be outside of the hit zone and can counterattack during the recovery time of the opponent. If you have a team consisting of a fast attacking character like Kirby or Pikachu and the other member is a power hitter like DK or Falcon, have the faster character go in first to create opportunity for the power hitter to finish the job. In a situation where one teammate has a lot of damage, the other teammate with less than damage should stand in the forward position.
- Set up hits for your partner. The easiest way to do this is by grabbing an opponent but don't throw immediately. Instead, let your partner use a power move (preferably his/her most powerful or damaging hit, depending on the situation) to hit the victim. If your character hasn't let go yet, then throw the hapless victim away for some more damage. You can also hold an opponent in place with a comboing move such as a drill hit or the Mario tornado to give your partner a chance to use his/her power move. This technique is especially useful if one of your characters has a very powerful but hard to hit attack, like DK's giant punch, Luigi's fire punch etc.
- If you get a chance, do a two person combo on one of the opponents. This works best if the opponent has low damage, so he/she won't fly away. Just keeping doing the comboing moves, with you and your partner attacking one after another and then knock the opponent away with a power hit. If you have a partner who you are not familiar with or a cpu partner, don't expect to pull off a combo very often. It will take some time for human players to get used to each other's style and timing.
Handicap Battles (2 vs
1 or 3 vs 1)
Handicap battles can happen when one member of a two person team loses all his/her stock during a stock team fight and the other partner doesn't have enough stock to lend one to the partner. This type of battle can also be set up at the character selection screen. Playing one on two or even three level nines can improve your skills at the game and prove to you and others of your skill. It's a lot harder though to be outnumbered against human opponents. Turning the handicap option on makes your life slightly easier, but it still doesn't change the fact that you are in a pretty precarious situation. If you happen to be on the side with more people, remember not to underestimate the skill of your quarry. Sometimes desperate people will do desperate things, and it might catch you by surprise (like the guy ending the game at the pause screen or chucking the controller at you etc. Just kidding). Here are some strategies I've compiled for the handicap battle. Most of these apply to the disadvantaged person.
If you are being hunted down:
- You better roll and shield like crazy, or else you'll die very fast.
- Try to keep moving and jump around the stage, so that your enemies will have a harder time getting hold of you.
- Stay on the ground when battling the enemies. While on the ground, you have access to your character's smash attack and throws, which are usually more damaging and more powerful than the air moves your character has. You can also shield and roll on the ground, but not in the air. And finally, if you are on solid ground, you don't have to worry about attacks coming from below you, which is a good thing.
- Don't do anything risky, like attempting to spike or jump out to hit an opponent, because the other opponent(s) can easily come from behind and spike or edge guard you off the stage.
- Seperate your attackers and go after one of them. It's much easier to fight against one opponent than against two or three at once. Go after the opponent that you are most likely to kill, like the opponent who has high damage. On a big stage, try to kill the lighter opponent. On a small stage, attack the opponent who can't recover very well, like Link or Falcon, if present. Seperating your opponents also prevents them from comboing you.
If you are doing the hunting, and no handicap is on, then you and your partner(s) should just use the team strategies against your prey. If handicap is on (especially when it's turned up really high) however, you must take into consideration that your opponent can knock you guys further than you guys can knock him/her around, so don't be foolish and just jump in for a brawl. Instead, you should raise up the prey's damage with projectile and combos and then sent the person on an one way ticket past the boundary.
2 vs 1 vs 1
This is a weird kind of battle that happens very rarely, but it is possible to set one up in Smash. Anyways, use the free for all and team strategies where they apply, since this battle has elements from both.
Weird Battle Situations: When
the Damage % Has Been Adjusted
In the VS Options menu, there is a thing there in which a player can adjust the damage percentage of the battle. You can adjust it from the default 100%, down to 50%, or up to 200%. This option affects how far the characters' fly if they get hit. At 50%, it will take at least 300% of damage on an opponent to be able to kill him/her with a smash attack. At 200%, one hit KOs are very common. Here are some strategies for these weird situations, if you happen to come across them.
When damage % is turned way down:
- You have to deal a lot fo damage to an opponent to kill them, so to make your life easier, choose a character with very powerful attacks, like DK, with his giant punch, so you can kill an opponent at 200% instead of at 300%.
- Since you need to raise your opponents' damages way up, use moves that do more damage but don't necessarily knock people very far, like Samus' up smash or drill moves. Use a power move when the opponent gets over 250% worth of damage to knock the person away.
% is turned way up:
- Throw whenever you get a chance, since throws will kill instantly or send opponents very far away. This is because moves with high initial power (can send people far at 0% damage) have their powers amplified enough so that they can kill in one hit. Other moves that were weak at normal condition but are very powerful now include Fox's reflector, DK's hand slap and other moves with constant power. Smash attacks are not very useful here since they can't kill in one hit.