Chrom (クロム, Chrom) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was announced as a newcomer alongside Simon, Richter, Dark Samus, and King K. Rool in the Nintendo Direct on August 8th, 2018. He serves as an Echo Fighter of Roy, though his lack of sweetspots makes him parallel Roy the same way Lucina parallels Marth. Chrom is classified as fighter #25ε.
Matthew Mercer and Tomokazu Sugita, who voiced Chrom in the English and Japanese versions of Fire Emblem Awakening respectively, reprise their roles in the international and Japanese versions of Ultimate. Both voice actors initially revealed their roles on their Twitter accounts  .
How to unlock
Complete one of the following:
With the exception of the third method, Chrom must then be defeated on Arena Ferox.
As the Echo Fighter of Roy, Chrom's moveset and animations are primarily based on those of Roy, and his attributes are identical as well, with excellent yet polarized overall mobility (very fast dashing, air, and falling speeds, alongside a very effective dash dance, but a slightly above-average walking speed, slow air acceleration and a low midair jump) and good frame data for a weapon user. As a result, Chrom shares an almost similar gameplan: he is mainly a rushdown character, who aims to overwhelm his enemy by closing the distance quickly with fast movement. However, Chrom's primary difference is his sword's lack of a sweetspot and sourspot, making him more oriented towards spacing out his opponents at the cost of having lower damage output and knockback up close, compared to Roy (who focuses more on getting up close to his opponent for very hard hits). Chrom also notably lacks any of Roy's distinctive flame effects and reverse-gripped animations, and his forward tilt moves him slightly forward. Finally, Chrom's up special is completely different compared to Roy's, as Soaring Slash functions much like Aether compared to Blazer, and is more effective at racking up damage than KOing while onstage; it can even act as a niche sacrificial KO at extremely low percents out of a forward aerial, and otherwise acts as a deterrent for edge-guarding that Roy lacks. However, this is only effective if Chrom has a stock lead since he is usually KOed first.
Since Chrom's lack of a sweetspot makes his unique attribute similar to his daughter Lucina (who acts as the non-sweetspot/sourspot equivalent of Marth), Chrom's benefits are also somewhat identical to hers: they both share the trait of having the weighted average of their original fighter's damage numbers. As a result, they have more consistent combos, edgeguarding and KO potential than their base characters, and their attacks are significantly safer on shield and on hit than Marth and Roy's sourspots, at the cost of losing out on stronger sweetspots that can end stocks early. However, as Roy's sweetspots and sourspots are extremely polarized in power, Chrom's damage and knockback averages end up being higher-than-average, giving him an overall powerful offense. Additionally, he arguably benefits more from his balanced blade than Lucina does, since Roy's weaknesses are his reliance on getting extremely close and extremely ineffective sourspots; as a result, Chrom suffers less from Roy's main flaws, allowing him to both space and fight up close very effectively. In terms of general capabilities compared to Lucina, Chrom possesses faster overall speed and stronger grounded attacks, in exchange for lower jump height, faster falling speed, and weaker aerials. This makes him more capable than Lucina while on or moving along the ground, but drastically less versatile in the air and especially off-stage (mirroring the differences between Roy and Marth, respectively).
Despite his array of strengths, Chrom also has very polarized weaknesses. While Chrom's retention of Roy's high air speed grants him decent survivability with his second jump, his overall recovery and off-stage endurance is notoriously weak, even when compared to Roy, as Soaring Slash grants almost no horizontal distance and only snaps to ledge once he begins the downward slash, making it susceptible to counterattacks and sufficiently long hitboxes. This, combined with Chrom's low jump height and fast falling speed, results in him having one of the worst recoveries in the game, and also one of the most easily affected by semi-spikes and gimps. His poor recovery is only somewhat remedied by his aforementioned high air speed and the presence of his air dodge, which combined with his second jump, allows him to return to stage surprisingly frequently without the need for Soaring Slash. Despite this, Chrom's air dodge remains unsafe even though he relies on it more than other characters for survival. Additionally, he shares similar flaws with Roy: his excellent mobility is offset by a complete lack of projectile-denying tools, making him vulnerable to camping from a handful of characters, and his fast falling speed and low air acceleration makes him vulnerable to combos and juggles (though he has some good tools for escaping such combos, such as neutral aerial and falling up aerial).
Overall, Chrom is a very accessible and effective character and provides for a completely different playstyle from Roy despite their shared attributes and moves. His aim is to strike a balance between aggression and patience, as he has the mobility, range, and damage necessary to switch between gameplans on the fly. However, his very weak recovery mandates that players avoid being thrown off-stage and maintain stage control at all times, as not only is he vulnerable to getting edgeguarded and gimped, but can sometimes also end up in a spot where he is unable to recover at all.
All in all, Chrom's strengths outweigh his weaknesses. He has been viewed extremely positively in the early competitive scene since the release of Ultimate, has multiple dedicated mains such as Rivers and Mr.R who represent him in tournaments, and is a popular secondary pick for many high-level players.
Differences from Roy
As mentioned above, the main difference between Chrom and Roy is that Chrom's attacks lack Roy's inverse tipper sweetspots, instead dealing consistent damage across the entire blade. This gives Chrom the ability to space effectively with his sword and makes him more consistent, but in turn renders him incapable of securing early stocks. Additionally, Chrom has altered animations for his neutral attack, forward tilt and up tilt where he holds his sword properly instead of holding it in a reverse grip, and his up smash, down aerial and special moves do not use the flame effect either.
Unlike Lucina, whose only other major difference from Marth is that her up tilt has a timing-based sweetspot, Chrom's additional differences are much more pronounced. His up special is Soaring Slash, a move resembling Aether, which makes Chrom's recovery much less safe than Roy's, but also allows him to perform a sacrificial KO. His forward tilt moves him forward slightly, giving it more range. His neutral aerial uses weight-independent knockback on its first hit (like Marth and Lucina) rather than on its second hit. Chrom's Counter deals less knockback against weaker attacks, but more knockback against stronger attacks. Lastly, his Final Smash, Awakening Aether, is a unique move which is drastically different in function from Roy's Critical Hit.
Because Chrom's lack of Roy's sweetspots and flame-based attacks spreads across his entire moveset, and his up special makes his off-stage presence much less safe for both Chrom and his opponent(s), Chrom is generally considered to be one of the most unique Echo Fighters, alongside Ken and Lucina. As such, these three are not expected to share a spot on the tier list, and are expected to be allowed to be used with their base fighters in Squad Strike.
Chrom has received some few changes via game updates, but has been mostly buffed overall. Update 2.0.0 reduced the knockback of Soaring Slash's meteor smash hitbox, as the move was quite infamous for being a fairly reliable sacrificial KO that could be easily comboed into from his aerials, thus increasing the likelihood of Chrom getting KOed first during a last-stock situation. The same update also buffed his down aerial as well; the move now autocancels earlier, matching its interruptibility. Update 3.0.0 increased the range of Chrom's dash grab, much like with Marth, Roy and his daughter, enabling Chrom himself to grab opponents more efficiently, as well as making his dash grab less likely to whiff against shielding opponents. Chrom also benefits from the various projectile shield damage nerfs in that same update as well, enabling him to deal with projectile camping from certain characters more effectively. Update 3.1.0 improved his up smash, enabling its linking hits to connect into each other more reliably, a problem that update 7.0.0 once again addressed by removing the rare instances where opponents would trip out of the last hit.
Technical changelist 3.1.0
For a gallery of Chrom's hitboxes, see here.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
In any victory pose, there is a chance Chrom will say "Our bond is stronger than steel." (いつでも稽古をつけてやる, We can practice anytime.) if Lucina was present during the match.
In competitive play
Prior to the release of Ultimate, players were wary of Chrom's ability as a fighter, due to players perceiving his reliance on Soaring Slash granting him possibly one of the worst recoveries in the game, alongside Roy's mediocre standing in Smash 4 (due to Chrom being an Echo Fighter of him). Mindsets were quickly turned upon release however, as Roy's myriad of buffs allowed Chrom to perform as a highly effective swordfighter, with a powerful overall damage output and excellent speed; in addition, Chrom's access to balanced hitboxes made him less risky in comparison, and Soaring Slash also granted him a notorious KO combo out of forward aerial, allowing him to perform a sacrificial KO that would always lead to his opponent dying first. This made Chrom extremely popular during the first few months, with him being considered one of the best swordfighters in the game alongside Ike at the time.
Update 2.0.0 eventually worsened the effectiveness of Chrom's Soaring Slash combo, and his exploitable recovery has also been taken advantage of as the meta grew, which caused his player count to drop as time passed. Both Chrom and Ike would also be overlooked in favor of Lucina and Roy, who were quickly gaining prominence in competitive play as two of the best swordfighters in the game. As a result, players would eventually drop him entirely or designate him as a reliable pocket character, while some would turn to use him alongside Roy for different matchups. Regardless, while Chrom has not been as prominent of a pick as he initially was, he is still considered a very effective fighter, with him commonly being used as secondary for notable professional players as a replacement for Roy or Lucina.
Any number following the Smasher name indicates placement on the Fall 2019 PGRU, which recognizes the official top 50 players in the world in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate from July 13th, 2019 to December 15th, 2019.
Classic Mode: Fight as One
Chrom fights mainly in team battles, in homage to Fire Emblem Awakening's Pair Up system, in which two units can team up to deal additional damage to an opponent. The first round instead recreates his duel with Lucina in Chapter 4 of Awakening.
Role in World of Light
Although Chrom does not appear in the World of Light opening cutscene, he was vaporized and later imprisoned alongside the rest of the fighters (sans Kirby) when Galeem unleashed his beams of light.
Chrom was one of the many fighters that fell under Dharkon's control upon Galeem's first defeat. He is in a desolate part of the Triforce of Courage section of the Sacred Land sub-area. The only way to reach him is by finding a treasure chest and jumping in it once opened in order to be transported to his location. This is hinted by an Owl Statue in the right path of the Triforce of Power section.
Chrom's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Chrom in World of Light allows the player to preview the first spirit below in the Spirit List under the name "???". As a Fighter Spirit, it cannot be used in Spirit Battles and is purely aesthetic. Each Fighter Spirit has an alternate version that replaces them with their artwork in Ultimate.
In Spirit battles
As the main opponent
As a minion
Character introduction video