Of all the Figure Players available in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, none have remained as consistent a top-level threat from the very beginning quite like Link. He’s one of the most frequently-entered characters in tournaments for multiple reasons — his amiibo is rather common, he’s a popular and well-known gaming icon, and he’s powerful and versatile in the competitive metagame. If you’d like to learn more about Link, you can do so over at his wiki page. Otherwise, let’s jump right into today’s training!
Special thanks to Luckman for contributing Link’s training information!
As mentioned earlier, Link’s amiibo is common, so many new trainers start their journey with this character. If that’s the case with you as well, you might want to learn more about how Spirits work on Figure Players in this game. Luckily, we’ve got a full-fledged Spirits guide you can check out any time!
Link has a rather limited number of viable Spirit builds when compared to the rest of the cast. Super Armor doesn’t suit him very well due to his average weight and recovery, while Autoheal doesn’t appeal since he has to get up close to finish off the enemy. In contrast, Armor Knight is ridiculously strong on Link — especially when paired with Trade-Off Ability ↑.
Most tournaments keep Super Armor, Autoheal, and Armor Knight banned, though. Meaning if you’re looking to enter one that follows our ban list, you’ll need to use some different Spirit effects instead. Weapon Attack ↑, Toss & Meteor, and Hyper Smash Attacks is a great setup, and it grants insane attack power to Link’s already-strong up smash. Other options to consider include Side Special ↑ and Trade-Off Ability ↑. If you’re training a Raid Boss, you’re free to use more fun options such as Instadrop, Giant, Made of Metal, Move Speed ↑, or Landing Lag ↓. Keep the FP’s stats balanced and make sure its Spirit type is Neutral!
If you’re new to competitive amiibo training and are worried that it might be too complicated, worry not! Link’s optimal playstyle is easy to grasp. You’ll need to mirror match your FP all the way to Level 50 (or mirror match it to around Level 30 and then turn its learning off), and you should do so on Battlefield-form stages for the best possible result. Don’t run, dash, jump, or taunt — keep it simple and just slowly walk instead. This helps your FP react better to incoming attacks at later levels. Going off-stage is fine, but don’t go too far, as Link’s up special doesn’t grant him much distance. Here are all the moves to use during training:
- Forward tilt: One of Link’s best close-ranged attacks. It’s a fast sword swipe that deals solid damage and can even KO — especially when used near the ledge. Use this attack often!
- Boomerang: Link’s strongest (and only viable) projectile. Use a few Boomerangs in a row at mid-range to rack on damage from afar. You can also wait at the edge and aim Boomerangs at your FP to delay its recovery.
- Up smash: An excellent aerial punish! Use it against your FP when it’s in the air. Up smash strikes three times and deals a ton of damage, making it very important to Link’s success.
- Forward smash: You can also catch your FP’s landings and rolls with a forward smash. When attacking with this move, try your best to land both hits. At early levels, your amiibo might only use the first strike — don’t worry! This will fix itself by the time the FP reaches Level 50.
- Down smash: This is Link’s least useful smash attack, but it’s still a good one nonetheless. Use it at the edge and to catch rolls!
- Neutral aerial: Link’s primary landing option. Every so often, you can use a neutral air to secure a safe landing after you’re launched upwards.
- Forward aerial: You’re free to go off-stage to chase your FP if you want, but when doing so, only attack it with forward airs. It’s especially strong if you drop off the ledge to use it. Don’t go too far off the stage, though. Try to stay as close as possible!
- Down aerial: Another situational landing option. It might seem lame to land with down air (and it is), but FPs can’t always block or dodge the attack in time.
- Down tilt: One of Link’s combo starters. Don’t worry about actually teaching him any combos; as long as the AI knows to use down tilt, it’ll teach itself the move’s follow-ups on its own. Convenient!
- Grab & throws: When grabbing your FP, don’t pummel — just throw. Toss it to the nearest ledge! The AI has some hard-coded combos, but again, as long as it knows to grab it’ll teach itself the rest of the combos. No need to worry!
- Up tilt: This move can link into itself and then into an up smash or up air. Try that out at low percentages!
- Up aerial: In addition to juggling with up smash and up tilt, you can also mix in a few up airs. You’ll want to stay grounded for the most part, but you can occasionally make an exception to jump and attack with up air.
- Back aerial: And finally, we’ve got back air, which is another potential landing option Link can use. If you’re able to drag your FP to the ground with back air, you can follow up with a forward tilt.
There are several important moves you’ll need to avoid using (or getting hit by) during training: Remote Bomb, Bow and Arrows, Spin Attack, and neutral attack. None of these moves are particularly useful to Link – at least, not in the context of competitive amiibo training – and thus should be avoided. Remote Bomb, in particular, is one of Link’s worst moves; the AI gets distracted and tries to pick up the bomb. It occasionally damages itself with its own projectile too! Unfortunately, Link’s AI will always pull out Remote Bombs to a certain extent. All you can do is minimize this behavior — it can’t be entirely eliminated no matter how hard you try.
Raid Boss Training
True to his title of Hero of Hyrule, Link is a strong Raid Boss! His traits are well-balanced, as he’s got respectable range, power, and speed. Since you’re training a Raid Boss, you’re welcome to dash and jump as often as you’d like (since just walking is very predictable for human opponents). You might want to be careful with teaching Link to go off-stage against humans, as a good opponent will be able to intercept his recovery. Here are the moves to use during training:
- Forward tilt: This move works great against humans, too! Use it at close range during training to rack on damage.
- Neutral attack: Try using Link’s jab after a parry. When attacking with jab, use all three hits of the combo.
- Down tilt: It can combo into aerials at low percentages, but you don’t need to teach your Link amiibo the specific combos to use. Those are all hard-coded, so all you need to do is teach it to down tilt and those combos will activate at later levels.
- Up tilt: A solid anti-air. It can combo into itself, an up smash, or an up air. Use it against your FP when it’s above you!
- Up smash: A three-part sword swipe with tons of kill power. It’s got quite a bit of ending lag, though, so only use it when you’re sure it will connect. If you’re playing on a Battlefield-form stage, you can use up smash to attack your FP when it’s on a platform above you.
- Boomerang: At mid-range, fire off a Boomerang or two for good measure. It can be angled as well, and it does a great job at harassing opponents off-stage. The AI might occasionally combo a Boomerang into an arrow shot and then an aerial move, which is cool to see!
- Forward smash: More rarely, you can use a forward smash to punish a botched landing or to KO outright. As mentioned in the previous section, your FP might only use the first hit of forward smash when it’s at an early level. This problem will correct itself given time, so don’t worry!
- Neutral aerial: Link’s favorite air attack! It’s infamous for its incredible priority, and it can beat out a surprising number of incoming projectiles. Use it out of a short hop and to land!
- Forward aerial: When your FP is launched upwards, you can intercept it with a powerful forward air to KO! You might want to hold off on off-stage play, though, and this relegates forward air to an on-stage only tool.
- Back aerial: Great to land, and can combo into an up tilt or up smash upon landing. Use some back airs during training, too!
- Grab & throws: Mix in some grabs as well. Toss your FP towards the nearest ledge! Link’s AI will eventually teach itself to use down throw aerial combos.
As with the competitive section, you’ll want to avoid using Bow and Arrows and Remote Bombs. FPs aren’t very good with items around; they’ll get distracted and walk towards the item but then won’t actually do anything with it. If your Link FP fires a Remote Bomb, try to avoid getting hit by it. Even with a down special value of 0 (which trainers can only see by decrypting an amiibo file), Link will still pull out Remote Bombs every once in a while. Try to minimize the amount of times it hits you!
Link is one of the most popular Figure Players for a reason: his strength, utility, and versatility are almost unrivaled. Link’s wiki page goes a bit more in-depth on his matchups and metagame position, if you’re interested in that. And if you have any questions that weren’t answered here, feel free to drop by our Discord server and ask — we’ll be happy to help! If you want to enter a tournament after training, be sure to check out our Powersaves guide or mobile backup guide. As always, we appreciate any donations to help keep the site running. Thank you so much for reading! Until next time — happy training!
If you would like to read more amiibo training guides, please follow this link.