Once upon a time, Zelda was a mid-tier fighter in Super Smash Bros. 4. If you play competitive Smash, this might already come as a surprise. Even more surprising, then, is that Zelda is considered high tier in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate! If you’re a Zelda main and you have a Zelda amiibo — your time has come. And if you’re looking to train it, you’ve come to the right place!
Zelda’s got a lot going for her — at least in the context of the amiibo metagame. She’s got large hitboxes, a high damage output, powerful finishers, and a solid recovery. That’s all well and good, but perhaps Zelda’s greatest strength is her off-stage game. Thanks to her aforementioned recovery, she can afford to go off-stage and chase enemies with her forward, back, and down aerials. Ultimate’s AI is not very good at defending itself in the air, so Zelda’s gimps often lead to very early KOs.
As with all characters, though, Zelda has her fair share of weaknesses. She’s fairly slow, and faster foes often hit with their attacks first. Some of her strongest finishers have a moment of ending lag, which gives said opponent ample time to strike back. She’s also fairly light, and thus should avoid taking damage at all costs to prevent being KOed early (though every character needs to do this, to an extent).
Overall, Zelda’s strengths far outweigh her weaknesses, and she emerges as a top-notch contender. She can’t quite contend against the likes of Bowser or Incineroar, but she’s up there nonetheless. We’ve got a wiki page on Zelda that talks about her moveset and performance, so be sure to give it a read if you’ve got a moment.
Slow Super Armor and Autoheal Spirits don’t work particularly well with Zelda, but Super Armor has a fair case with the character. She’s lightweight, so Super Armor doesn’t benefit her like it would a heavyweight, but being able to throw out powerful attacks without a care is a terrifying prospect. Armor Knight is another fantastic option, and pairs especially well with Trade-Off Ability ↑.
“Big five” aside, Zelda still has access to a fair amount of solid bonus effects. Toss & Meteor is an excellent choice, as it boosts the power of Zelda’s up air, down air, and up smash. Hyper Smash Attacks, Magic Attack ↑ (not PSI Attack ↑, since Zelda is using magic, not PSI), and Air Attack ↑ are a few examples of additional options.
Zelda’s main focus is firepower, but she also struggles to survive at high percentages due to her light weight. As a result, you’re best off using the standard balanced spread (2100 / 2100). Don’t worry if you can’t even out the numbers; 2100 / 2100 is just a ballpark range.
Unless this is your first time training an amiibo, you probably know the drill: mirror match your Zelda amiibo until it reaches Level 50. Alternatively, if you’re satisfied with its behavior at around Level 30, you can switch its Learning off and level it up some other way. Just make sure your FP doesn’t face a CPU character with its Learning on. And be sure to check out our other character guides, too! Regarding Zelda, here are the main moves to use:
- Forward smash: It packs a surprising punch, especially coming from such a light character. Its disjointed and lingering hitbox catches opponents off-guard very frequently, and its multihit nature means opposing FPs will drop their shield too early when blocking the attack.
- Forward tilt: A quick slash that can be angled up or down. It’s also essential to Zelda’s kit. It only kills at the edge, but its relatively high speed – compared to the rest of her moveset – makes it important.
- Up smash: Low horizontal range, but beats aerial assaults and kills fairly early. It’s definitely an important move to teach.
- Up air: Its massive hitbox and firepower steals stocks extremely early, and the FP will use it astonishingly well if taught. Be sure to use it often.
- Up tilt: Strings into itself, an up smash, or an up air. And since up smash and up air can both KO, using an up tilt to lead into them is very helpful.
- Forward / back aerial: Their sweetspots make for devastating blows that kill even the heaviest of fighters at surprisingly low percentages. The FP combos into them and occasionally uses them out of a short hop. Be sure to teach these at an early level without overusing them.
- Down aerial: Zelda’s AI is adept at landing this move’s strong hitbox and will go off-stage to punish any opponent it can. Taking stocks early is the name of Zelda’s game, and nothing accomplishes that better than a strong spike.
- Grab & throws: Zelda’s combos are one of her most important attributes. The FP’s combo capabilities are rather simple, but using setups like down throw into back air or up air goes a long way in racking up damage.
There are a few more moves to consider as well, but they aren’t quite as useful as the ones listed above. Use them every once in a while, but don’t prioritize them over the attacks we already discussed.
- Neutral special: It’s kind of an odd move. Given its status as a reflector, it’s essential in some of Zelda’s matchups (particularly against Ness). Feel free to use Nayru’s Love to reflect projectiles, but don’t use it too much, as the AI might get spammy.
- Neutral aerial: A great landing tool, but it’s outclassed in almost every possible situation. There’s no harm in teaching it, but be sure to focus more heavily on other moves instead.
The only moves you should avoid during training are side special, down special, and down smash. Zelda’s FP is not good at timing its projectiles, and often begins charging them right next to the opponent. This lets them attack her for free, which creates a large risk with little reward. Meanwhile, down smash is irrelevant due to its small hitbox and low power.
If you’re looking for a specific move we didn’t mention here, don’t worry — we didn’t forget it! It’s just that the attack in question isn’t noteworthy enough to include here. Feel free to try it out anyway, because when it comes to amiibo training, experimentation is key!
Thanks so much for reading! Training Zelda might be a bit finicky after a while, but she’s a promising fighter who continues to impress trainers time and time again. If you’ve got any questions that this guide didn’t answer, feel free to ask them over at Exion’s Discord server! We’ll be happy to help you out as soon as we can. Happy training, and until next time!
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