Meta Knight’s always been kind of a sad character — that is, at least in the context of competitive amiibo training. As we know all too well by now, combo characters generally don’t translate to strong Figure Players. There have been a few exceptions in the recently-released Joker and Terry FPs, but said exception unfortunately does not extend to Meta Knight. If you’d like to learn more about his metagame history (including how sad he was in Super Smash Bros. 4), feel free to read his corresponding wiki page. Otherwise, let’s jump right into today’s training!
Special thanks to Random Fire for contributing Meta Knight’s training information!
Meta Knight has it tough even with the aid of a Spirit team. As usual, you should prioritize letting your FP inherit its Spirits at as early a level as possible. If your FP is already Level 50, that’s fine too — but you might want to just reset it and start from scratch. We do have an in-depth Spirits guide in case you’d find that helpful; if you’re already well-versed on them, then here are all of Meta Knight’s best builds:
- Banned bonuses: Meta Knight’s top setup is Armor Knight plus Trade-Off Ability ↑ or Move Speed ↑. If you’ve read many of our character guides before, this should come as no surprise: Meta Knight’s a lightweight fighter, so he greatly appreciates this setup’s extra defensive boost. You can obtain Armor Knight via the Halberd Support Spirit that randomly appears in Funky Kong’s shop.
- Tournament-legal bonuses: Almost all of Meta Knight’s attacks involve a weapon, so Weapon Attack ↑ is a clear choice! You can even use two of them in one build if you like. Beyond that, you can try out Air Attack ↑, Air Defense ↑, Move Speed ↑, Trade-Off Ability ↑, or Critical Healing & Metal. Go ahead and pick the ones that best suit the kind of FP you want to train!
- Raid Boss bonuses: Normally, we’d tell you that all of the bonus effects listed above work well on a Raid Boss. While that is technically true, there are better options available: specifically, using one or two Move Speed ↑ Support Spirits. Meta Knight becomes crazy with increased movement speed, which will make him much more threatening to any opponent who dares cross his path. You can also use Air Defense ↑ and Weapon Attack ↑ in the leftover slots!
Once your FP has its bonus effects, congratulations — the hardest part is over! Now you need to even out its stats. We recommend a balanced (2100 / 2100) or slightly defensive build (1800 / 2400), but to be honest any setup works as long as your FP’s stats are maxed out. Make sure its Spirit-type is Neutral before you continue so that it doesn’t lose any Spirit-type matchups later down the line!
For the most part, Meta Knight’s optimal training falls in line with what the rest of our training guides say. More specifically, you should be teaching your FP to walk instead of run. That means no dashing — unless you’re just about to use a dash attack, that is. Whenever your Meta Knight FP is off-stage, you should be too! This character needs to edgeguard to get his KOs. Here’s a complete list of every move to use, then:
- Down smash is Meta Knight’s fastest smash attack and one of his best options. Strikes on both sides and its back hit boasts decent knockback. You can mix in some down tilts as poking options, too — perhaps near the ledge. Overall, you’ll want to use much more down smash than down tilt.
- Drill Rush is another one of Meta Knight’s best moves, and using it often actually makes this fighter’s matchup against Incineroar somewhat workable! Use this on the ground from a short distance away, but never use it in the air. Meta Knight’s AI arcs Drill Rush in a strange angle if it does, and this angle sometimes leads to self-destructs.
- Neutral air, forward air, and back air are your main edgeguarding tools. Follow your FP off-stage and aggressively attack it with aerial moves! You’re welcome to use any of these above-stage to secure a safe landing, too.
- Up tilt is your anti-air. At low percentages, it can combo into itself or an up smash. Mix in dash attack and Dimensional Cape from a distance, too! Again, you should only use Dimensional Cape while grounded, and infrequently at that.
There are several moves you should never use while training Meta Knight. First up is Mach Tornado: it doesn’t have much utility when used on the ground since it only hits once and isn’t safe on shield. Meta Knight’s AI often uses Mach Tornado way too often in the air, which gives him a chance of flying right off-stage and to his death. Next is Shuttle Loop; after the AI uses the attack, it won’t fast-fall back to the stage to minimize its vulnerability. Then there’s forward tilt, in which the AI always fails to use the third and final hit unless it’s attacking an opponent’s shield.
Raid Boss Training
Meta Knight does rank sort of low on our competitive tier list, but he’s actually a really fun Raid Boss! With the proper training and Spirits, he’s slippery and unpredictable. By the way, if you’re new to amiibo training, we actually have a fully written-out introduction guide. This’ll tell you what FPs can and can’t learn, and the general best practices to employ while training them. Definitely check it out if you have a moment! If not, then here’s Meta Knight’s optimized Raid Boss move list:
- When on the ground, your neutral options include down tilt, grabs, a tiny bit of jab, and the occasional dash attack. That being said, you’ll want to focus most heavily on aerial moves — especially landing aerials.
- Forward air and back air can be used for air combat, neutral air and down air can be used to land, and up air can be used to juggle. Neutral air is a bit strange; it’s really important but shouldn’t be spammed due to its small hitbox. Try to use all five aerials about equally.
- For juggling, your best moves are dash attack or grab (to catch landings) or up air, up smash, and up tilt (in that order). None of Meta Knight’s moves are objectively best at catching landings, so rotate these as you see fit.
- Mix in a small number of forward smash, up smash, and down smash. They’re pretty fast, especially when compared to other characters’ smash attacks!
- Meta Knight can afford to edgeguard, even against human opponents! Use neutral air, forward air, and back air most of the time. Down air works too!
No forward tilt and no special moves. As mentioned previously, Meta Knight’s AI won’t finish its three-hit forward tilt combo and often self-destructs when taught to use its special moves. It’s disappointing, yes, but avoiding these moves is the best way to ensure that your Raid Boss lives for as long as possible.
It’s certainly a shame that Meta Knight can’t use the entirety of his kit to its fullest potential. Sadly, that’s the case for many characters in this game. Fighters like Meta Knight are often optimized by spamming just a few of their best moves, and while that does sound lame, it’s their best shot at tournament viability. If you have any questions, please direct them to our Discord community! We also have a Patreon page and donation box if you’d like to check those out as well. Until next time — happy training!
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