Back in Super Smash Bros. 4, anybody who so much as mentioned the idea of a powerful R.O.B. amiibo was instantly shut down — it just wasn’t possible. His AI couldn’t properly use any of its special moves, and unfortunately, the same is true for R.O.B.’s appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Simply put, this character is incredibly difficult to train. But if you’re up to the challenge, we’ve prepared some helpful strategies for you! If you’d like to learn more about R.O.B.’s metagame history before continuing, check out his wiki page. Otherwise, let’s jump right into today’s training!
Special thanks to RapJM for contributing R.O.B.’s training information!
R.O.B. has a slightly easier time in the Spirits metagame because he benefits from a large number of Support skills. That being said, he’s still tough to train even when backed by Spirits. Remember to give your FP its full Spirit team at Level 1 — for more information on why that is, please refer to our in-depth Spirits guide! Now then, here are all of R.O.B.’s best Spirit builds:
- Banned bonuses: R.O.B.’s a heavyweight fighter, so he benefits from either Super Armor or Armor Knight most of all. Super Armor occupies all three slots, but Armor Knight only takes up two, so you can use Trade-Off Ability ↑ to fill the third slot in that case. Armor Knight plus Trade-Off Ability ↑ equals a ton of extra power!
- Tournament-legal bonuses: You’ve got plenty of other options if the tournament you want to enter doesn’t allow Super Armor or Armor Knight. In fact, you can use any combination of Physical Attack ↑, Fist Attack ↑ (yes, that actually works here), Air Defense ↑, Trade-Off Ability ↑, Critical-Health Stats ↑, and Critical Healing & Metal.
- Raid Boss bonuses: You can just use any of the bonus combinations listed above, if you like! Although, R.O.B. would benefit immensely from a Move Speed ↑ Spirit effect when it comes to beating up human players. Consider using that one, too!
In terms of stats, any are fine, but you should shoot for an even spread (2100 / 2100) if at all possible. Don’t bother using Shooting Attack ↑ or Thrown Items ↑ — R.O.B.’s AI doesn’t use its projectiles correctly, so these Spirit effects aren’t worth the slots they take up. Stick to what we’ve recommended and you’ll be off to a great start! As one final note here, make sure your FP’s Spirit-type is Neutral before you start training it. That way it won’t lose Spirit-type matchups later on!
R.O.B’s training is rather simple: use each of the moves below as described! Make sure that you walk instead of run, too — that way your FP can more easily access its defensive options when faced with danger. Don’t go off-stage to edgeguard, either; R.O.B.’s up special grants him lots of distance but doesn’t do much to protect him from attackers. If you’d like to learn more about amiibo training before you start, check out our general guide! Without further ado, here’s your move list:
- Forward smash and forward tilt are your main moves, and you should use these two about equally. Grabs are solid as well; at later levels, R.O.B. can follow an up throw with a side special, forward tilt, or forward smash, and he can also follow a down throw with an up air (or a down smash, but that doesn’t work so well). Point is, use all three of these moves at close range!
- Arm Rotor strikes multiple times and should be mixed in at close range as well — but less often than the three moves listed above. You can also use Arm Rotor when your FP does a ledge-getup roll to rack on some damage.
- For anti-air, you’ll want to use up smash and up air. Up smash is really strong, but the AI occasionally gets a bit too crazy with it so don’t use it too often. Up air, on the other hand, is excellent; in addition to boasting respectable kill power, it can perform drag-down combos on opponents that the AI will actually use!
- Dash attack can be used once in a blue moon to approach, and at later levels you’ll see your FP combo it into a forward air. When you’re off-stage and trying to recover, you can occasionally use a back air to help you get back to the stage. Only do this infrequently, though.
- Down tilt, Robo Beam, and Gyro are all optional. Down tilt is fast and can combo into itself, a dash attack or a forward smash, but the AI sometimes freezes after using it. It also can’t tell when Robo Beam is fully charged, so if you use this move only do so sometimes and from a distance. R.O.B.’s down special creates an item, which attracts other FPs to its location to try and pick it up. Unfortunately, R.O.B.’s AI has a tendency to charge Gyro over and over while rolling backwards for no reason. To prevent this from happening, only charge Gyro halfway when you do decide to use it.
You’ll want to avoid aerial special moves, down airs, jabs, and up tilts at all costs. R.O.B.’s FP likes to try out non-functional combos with its jab (such as jab, jab, then forward smash, which doesn’t work). Down air is inconsistent and laggy, and then R.O.B.’s AI has another chance to freeze after using an up tilt. By now you’ve probably noticed that R.O.B. freezes a lot, and there’s no way to completely remedy this issue. How sad…
Raid Boss Training
It’s time for some tough truths, and here’s the toughest one of all: R.O.B. is not a viable Raid Boss. This fighter can’t do anything right; it can’t tell when Robo Beam is fully charged, it leaves itself vulnerable while charging Gyro, and it occasionally freezes after attacking with up tilt. Oh, and he can’t go off-stage, either, as he’s easily picked off by air attacks. Please, train literally any other fighter first. But if you insist, then here’s a complete list of moves to use:
- R.O.B.’s AI flubs most of its grounded moves, which doesn’t leave many options left. Your best bets are grabs, down tilts, and forward tilts. Of these, you should give grabs the highest priority; fortunately, R.O.B. can use simple up throw and down throw combos to help rack on damage. There’s a slight chance that R.O.B. freezes after using down tilt, but this FP literally cannot function against human players without it.
- You can also use neutral air and forward air for air-to-air combat. Neutral air has tons of range plus respectable power, while forward air is a bit faster. When your FP is above you, you can catch its landing with an up air or up smash — and then you can start juggling it with repeated up airs!
- At high percentages, seal the deal with a forward smash, up smash, or down smash. R.O.B.’s not going to be able to KO without them, so you’ll need to use these moves quite often.
There’s not much room left for optimization here, either. To review: R.O.B.’s AI can’t tell when Robo Beam is charged, can’t mash its Arm Rotor for a longer duration, and half-charges its Gyro while rolling backwards for no apparent reason. To add insult to injury, these behaviors are hard-coded — which means you can’t change them no matter how much training you give to your FP.
Thanks so much for reading! R.O.B.’s one of the most finicky FPs in Ultimate, and at this point all we can really hope for is a game update that improves his poor AI. His optimal training might seem lame – and it absolutely is – but we have to work with what we can get. If you have any questions, please direct them to our Discord community! You should also check out our Patreon and donation box if you have a second. Until next time — happy training!
If you would like to read more amiibo training guides, please follow this link.