Pichu (Japanese: ピチュー, Pichū) is a Pokémon character in Super Smash Bros. Melee. It is unlocked by completing Event Match 37: Legendary Pokémon or by playing 200 vs. matches. Pichu is the "baby" Pokémon of Pikachu, and in Melee this is realized by him being a smaller, lighter, and faster clone of Pikachu.
Pichu is currently ranked 25th/26th (lowest tied with Kirby) in the G tier due to the fact that it has poor range, most characters can easily chain throw it despite it being small and being the lightest character in the game, which is another huge flaw, and it takes damage from its own attacks. Pichu, however, is not completely worthless; it has a surprisingly good grab game, as well as a decent air game and a slew of powerful attacks. Regardless, Pichu suffers from abysmal matchups, and it has the highest amount of unwinnable matchups of any character in any Smash game, having a total of twelve. By comparison, Kirby has seven, Ganondorf (who is the lowest on the tier list for Brawl) has six, and Bowser, the second lowest on Melee's tier list, has five. Furthermore, Pichu has no advantageous matchups, with three being even (against Yoshi, Kirby and Bowser).
To unlock Pichu, players have to complete Event 37: Legendary Pokémon or take part in 200 VS. matches. Upon completing either criterion, the player will fight against Pichu on Pokémon Stadium, with "Battle Theme" playing.
Pichu as a character falls under the archetype of being nimble, yet relatively weak; indeed, while slightly stronger than Pikachu in some cases, it still has some aspects that are faster than Pikachu, such as higher acceleration and a slightly faster falling speed. Due to its high traction and average falling speed, Pichu has a rather short wavedash; low-lag, fast aerials also give Pichu a good SHFFL, identical to Pikachu.
One of Pichu's main advantages is its perhaps surprising power. While its smashes and tilts are all of short range, all are unusually powerful considering Pichu's small frame. Its up smash and forward smash contain incredible power, possibly KOing characters reliably at as little as 70 to 80 percent, while its down smash semi-spikes opponents and has invincibility frame. Pichu's Skull Bash also has surprising power and distance when charged; at full power, it almost guarantees a KO at many percentages, and it makes a good recovery option to boot.
Pichu also has a surprisingly good air and grab games. Pichu has plenty of options in the air, including an up air that can easily continue combos and other aerials that can easily deal damage. Pichu also has good grab game; its forward and back throws can knock opponents off stage or set up combos, while its up and down throws can potentially start chain throws.
Pichu can also easily manoeuvre around stages, with very low landing lag, a small frame and a rather fast dash, as well as decent jumping power.
Pichu's greatest flaw, however, is the recoil damage it gets from using almost any of its attacks involving electrical hitboxes. In almost all of Pichu's attacks, at least one percent of damage is directly inflicted onto it, and because of Pichu's light weight, it acts as an extreme detriment to its gameplay; for merely recovering, for instance, Pichu gains four percent directly. Due to Pichu's incredibly light weight (the lightest in the game), this can stack up quickly against Pichu, making it more and more vulnerable by merely attacking the foe. As such, Pichu players need to strike a balance between electric and non-electric attacks; Pichu, however, is reliant on electric attacks for most of its KO and comboing moves.
Additionally, Pichu suffers from large range problems. All of its best and most powerful attacks are very close to its body, making it tough for Pichu to KO or inflict damage easily. Pichu, however, does have access to two projectiles (Thunder Jolt and Thunder), but both cause recoil damage and have little KO potential; Thunder Jolt, however, does force opponents into the air, but Thunder itself only attacks above Pichu. Pichu's grab game is also heavily hampered by its short range, at the third shortest in the game.
Pichu's defence game is also poor, with short tech rolls, rolling dodges, and a slow, short ledge roll, though its shield is rather large, making shield stabbing less of a problem for Pichu. Furthermore, Pichu is also quite vulnerable to combos, due to suffering from rather high hitstun.
In Single Player Modes
In Classic Mode
In Classic Mode, Pichu can appear as an ordinary fighter in one on one battles, as an ally or as an opponent alongside Kirby or Pikachu, as the sole opponent in a multi-character battle or as a metal opponent in the second to last stage. Barring the metal fight, Pichu always appears on Pokémon Stadium, with its alternate music Battle Theme playing.
In Adventure Mode, Pichu can appear in Stage 7 on Pokémon Stadium, appearing alongside a team consisting of Pikachu and, if unlocked, Jigglypuff. Pichu's theme, Battle Theme can also play on the stage.
In All-Star Mode, Pichu and its allies are fought on Fourside. Unlike normal gameplay, however, Battle Theme plays here.
Pichu appears in the following Event Matches:
In addition to the normal trophy about Pichu as a character, there are two trophies about it as a fighter, unlocked by completing the Adventure and All-Star Modes respectively with Pichu on any difficulty: