Toon Link (トゥーンリンク, Toon Link) is one of Link's multiple incarnations. Although several Links appear with the cel-shaded art that Toon Link is designed after, the one that appears as a fighter in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Smash Bros. 4 is based on the "Hero of Winds" seen in The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker and its direct sequel The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass.
Toon Link, like most of the Links, is a different Link to that of the one in Twilight Princess. While the art of Toon Link has been used for other Links in The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords, The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords Adventures, The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap, The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, and The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes, Toon Link refers to the Link from The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker and The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass. Despite this, Toon Link's trophies list The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks as one of his appearances, similarly to how Link's trophies mention The Legend of Zelda games regardless of whether the incarnation that appears in the Super Smash Bros. series actually appears in the games listed. Personality-wise Toon Link is one of the happier incarnations; even though he only appears in The Wind Waker and Phantom Hourglass, he is consistently shown to be carefree, easily excitable, and is more prone to laughing and smiling than any other incarnations. He is also expressive due to his cartoonish design allowing him to emote more exaggeratedly, a trait shared with the incarnations of Link that share his art style.
In The Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker, set hundreds of years after Ocarina of Time and within the Adult Link Timeline, the gods have flooded Hyrule, creating the Great Sea, encompassing the highest mountaintops of Hyrule. At the beginning of the game, Link's younger sister Aryll is captured by Helmaroc King, a giant masked bird controlled by the game's primary antagonist Ganondorf, the latter of which is searching for Princess Zelda. Link travels the Great Sea to rescue his sister and defeat the Helmaroc King, his quest intertwining with that of The King of Red Lions, who, after many trials, gives Link the title "Hero of Winds." Using the Wind Waker, a magical conductor's baton, he borrows the power of the gods to aid him in his quest. The wand's user interface is similar to that of the Ocarina of Time, but uses tempo in addition to pitch to form tunes. Link must eventually reassemble pieces of the Triforce of Courage to give him the power to fight Ganondorf. After Ganondorf's defeat, Hyrule drowns under the sea forever.
Sometime after the end of The Wind Waker, Link and Tetra sail for new lands. Their journeys are where The Legend of Zelda: Phantom Hourglass picks up. As the crew searches for new lands, they run into the Ghost Ship, which, when boarded, suddenly turns Tetra to stone, and teleports Link to the Realm of the Ocean King, where Tetra is imprisoned by Bellum. Link finds the Phantom Hourglass (an item that protects him from the life-draining magic coming from the Temple of the Ocean King, but only as long as it has sand in it), and carries it with him as he, Ciela, a new fairy companion, and Linebeck, an initially-cowardly and greedy captain, journey to various islands that bring him one step closer to defeating Bellum. Eventually, he claims the Phantom Sword and defeats Bellum, saving Tetra. Oshus, the Ocean King, is restored to his original form, and he teleports Link and Tetra back to their own realm. Tetra's crew claims everything to be a dream, as the claim that only 10 minutes passed when they supposedly fell asleep, but Link still has the empty hourglass while they see Linebeck's ship over at the horizon, which reveals that.
Sometime after the events of Phantom Hourglass, Tetra's crew and Link discover a new land, which they rechristen New Hyrule. 100 years after this, the events for The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks unfold and follow a new Link and a new Princess Zelda, the latter of whom is Tetra's descendant.
As a playable character
Main article: Toon Link (SSBB)
Toon Link is a secret character in Brawl, unlocked by either clearing the Subspace Emissary or clearing Classic mode with Link on any difficulty, clearing the Subspace Emissary and going through the hidden door in The Forest stage, or by participating in 400 brawls.
Toon Link's moves are virtually the same as the standard Link, but there are some differences. One of the most obvious is his Bomb, which emits an explosion that uses the art style from The Wind Waker and Phantom Hourglass. However, there are mechanical differences as well, as the large smoke puff has a greater range but less power.
His neutral special move, Hero's Bow, is also different. The arrows fly slower, but farther than Link's arrows. Aesthetically, his Spin Attack is not significantly different, with the only exception being his posture while spinning. Instead, its main difference is that it traps foes within, hitting multiple times before launching them away. Unlike Link, Toon Link retains the Boomerang as his side special and as such, it provides noticeable differences: it does not pull opponents like Link's does, and supplies more control when throwing it.
Toon Link, like Young Link in Melee, also has the ability to wall jump. While Link's jumping and falling styles are heavier and faster, Toon Link's jumps are larger and have a floaty quality to them. Toon Link is faster than Link, and Toon Link's dash attack is less powerful in proportion. Additionally, Toon Link's up smash attack is only one slash while Link's is three. When Toon Link's down aerial is performed, he will fly straight downwards with his sword similar to many other stall-then-fall attacks. Interestingly, this move pushes characters and items away, and slides down slopes like Kirby's Stone. Link's down aerial is similar to Toon Link's, but unlike Toon Link, he does not travel downward any faster. Additionally, all of Link's kick attacks, such as his neutral aerial and back aerial, have been replaced with additional sword slashes to compensate for Toon Link's short legs and tiny feet.
Toon Link currently ranks 13th on the tier list, placing him in the C+ tier and thus making him the highest ranking incarnation of Link in the Super Smash Bros. series.
As a playable character
Main article: Toon Link (SSB4)
Toon Link returns as a playable character in Super Smash Bros. 4, now as a starter character rather than an unlockable character. His appearance is almost totally unchanged since Brawl, although his overall color scheme is now much brighter.
The Spirit Tracks incarnation of Link also appears on the Spirit Train stage, although if Toon Link and/or Link is being used, Alfonzo will be the conductor instead. Spirit Tracks Link also has two trophies, one with his conductor's outfit and one with the Spirit Flute.
Toon Link ranks 22nd out of 56 on the tier list. While his power received some nerfs in the transition from Brawl, he retains his powerful zoning ability and even gained an improved grab game, which was arguably his greatest flaw in Brawl. His improved grab game allows for better spacing using his grab aerial and grants him a KOing option in the form of is back throw. Like in Brawl, Toon Link has achieved decent tournament representation and average tournament results as a result of largely retaining his strengths.