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Dark Samus (SSBU)

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This article is about Dark Samus's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. For the character in other contexts, see Dark Samus.
Dark Samus
in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Dark Samus SSBU.png
Universe Metroid
Availability Unlockable
Final Smash Phazon Laser
Tier A+ (25)

Dark Samus (ダークサムス, Dark Samus) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. She was announced as a newcomer during the August 8th, 2018 Super Smash Bros. Direct alongside Simon, Richter, Chrom, and King K. Rool. Dark Samus is Samus' Echo Fighter, and is therefore classified as Fighter #04ε.

The sound effects used for Samus in Super Smash Bros. 4 were repurposed for Dark Samus in Ultimate.

Dark Samus, alongside her base fighter Samus, is ranked 25th out of 82 on the current tier list, placing her in the A+ tier. Dark Samus has very minor differences from Samus, such as slighty altered hitboxes due to her different animations and elemental properties. These differences are not enough to make her play differently from Samus. As such, they are viewed as the same character in competitive play.

Dark Samus shares the same positives as Samus, such as strong zoning capabilities and a heavy weight. However, she also shares Samus' weaknesses, such as poor grounded options against up-close opponents and unreliable smash attacks. Overall, she like Samus achieves strong results in tournaments from players like Sisqui and Yaura.

How to unlock[edit]

Complete one of the following:

Dark Samus must then be defeated on Frigate Orpheon (the Ω form is used in World of Light).


Like Samus, Dark Samus is a heavyweight. She is a floaty character with slightly below average walking and dashing speeds, average air speed, above average air acceleration, high jump height and slow falling speed. These attributes grant her an easier time chasing aerial opponents and forcing air dodges, yet also cause her to be juggled rather easily. When combined with her few reliable landing options and slow falling speed, opponents will also have more time to punish Dark Samus as she attempts to return to the stage.

Similarly to Samus, Dark Samus' moveset consists of playing defensively, as she uses her projectiles to space, rack up damage from a distance and pressure shields. Charge Shot is her most consistent KOing option out of her special moves when fully charged, due to its speed and power. Missile is mostly used for spacing, due to both its Homing and Super variants being extremely inefficient at KOing, while Bomb grants Dark Samus various mix-ups and can aid her recovery. However, Missile and Bomb also possess valuable utility, in that they can guarantee a shield break when used in conjunction with a sufficiently charged Charge Shot or a sweetspotted back aerial. Lastly, Screw Attack is a decent out of shield option, a KOing option near the upper blast line and a viable combo finisher from aerial combo strings.

In addition, Dark Samus has a strong air game. The changes to air dodges have benefitted her overall, as they notably improve her ability to edgeguard (especially with moves such as forward aerial or her renowned Charge Shot), while she isn't hindered as much due to her fast air speed, the ability to stall mid-air using her Bombs, and her Grapple Beam tether recovery's long range. All of Dark Samus' aerials have no more than 20 frames of landing lag, and her back aerial is one of her best moves courtesy of its power, damage output, speed and range. Her down aerial can be a powerful meteor smash, forward aerial is a good pressuring tool due to its long duration, and up aerial is an excellent combo option. Lastly, her neutral aerial is a viable KOing option. When coupled with her high jumps, Dark Samus' air game is also potent while she is off-stage, as she can recover from nearly anywhere on the stage, stay in position for longer periods of time due to her floatiness, or bait the opponent by stalling in the air and punishing edge-guard attempts.

Dark Samus' grab game is also useful: her Grapple Beam has impressive range, doubles as a tether recovery, and has very little landing lag when used as a grab aerial. Down throw is very useful for starting combos that deal respectable damage and can be used with her neutral, forward and up aerials at varying percentages. Many of her combos can rack up more than 30% and when using platforms to her advantage, or string together multiple times and then be finished with Screw Attack, leading to a KO or dealing 40%-50% at the very least. Up throw is Dark Samus' strongest throw and is a fairly reliable KO option, especially on platforms. Although forward throw and back throw have decent damage outputs, their only utility is creating space and setting up edgeguards, and both are mediocre at best in doing so.

However, Dark Samus shares similar flaws to Samus. Dark Samus' ground game is mediocre overall as her smash attacks are punishable, with only her forward smash being a fairly reliable KOing option due to its quick start-up lag. Her neutral attack is very mediocre, which is noticeably exemplified in its inability to connect at high percentages and thus limits Dark Samus' anti-pressuring ability. Due to this and her average dashing speed, most Dark Samus players will often find themselves in the air, where her strengths lie.

Dark Samus also has issues with her recovery. Her grab aerial has very long range, her jumps are among the highest in the game, Screw Attack is fast and hard to punish, and Bomb jumping provides infinite horizontal recovery, but they are all offset by Screw Attack's only average distance, Bomb's high ending lag in the air and Dark Samus' only average air speed and reliance on her grab aerial to grab ledges from a distance. Altogether, this results in her recovery being slightly slow, linear and predictable.

Overall, Dark Samus is a character that performs best when using her projectiles and grab aerial for spacing in order to set up combos and either finish off pressured opponents off-stage, or KO them outright with Charge Shot. Unlike the majority of veterans, Dark Samus' optimal playstyle is highly unorthodox; as she falls short in regard to zoning-exclusive or melee-exclusive offense, success with Dark Samus requires careful, calculated use of her various tools to keep momentum in her favor. As such, she is a character that is hard to master, but greatly rewards patient and calculated play.

Differences from Samus[edit]

As with certain other Echo Fighters, Dark Samus is nearly identical gameplay-wise to Samus, with largely aesthetic differences. However, she has many basic animations that are different from Samus: a more standard roll which does not involve using her Morph Ball, Phazon-based attacks appearing as neon blue, electrical explosions instead of orange, flaming explosions, and more organic looking models for her Homing Missile, Super Missile and Bomb.

However, Dark Samus' small advantages over Samus (such as her slightly faster roll) are considered to be less situational than Samus' small advantages over Dark Samus (such as the ability to detonate enemy bombs with her flame properties, larger shield size, or a smaller hurtbox after rolling). The gameplay differences between the two are so marginal that it is ultimately up to the player's preference over which character to choose from.


  • Change As with all other Echo Fighters, Dark Samus has different taunts and victory animations.
  • Change Dark Samus has a different victory theme, which is shared with Ridley.
  • Change Dark Samus' No Contest animation is slightly different.
  • Change Dark Samus' on-screen appearance has her warp onto the stage from a wormhole.
  • Change Dark Samus hovers in midair during several of her animations, similarly to Mewtwo, Rosalina & Luma and Bowser Jr.
    • Change Dark Samus' idle stance and periodic idle poses are different. Many of her animations, such as her crouch transition, have been changed to seamlessly transition into this stance.
    • Change Dark Samus has an animation for transitioning into her own idle stance from Samus' idle stance, which is used only for animations that she shares with Samus. She shares this trait with Chrom and Mythra.
    • Change Dark Samus' turning, walking, initial dash, initial dash turnaround, running, turnaround, and braking animations are completely different, with sound effect changes to appropriately match the animations.
    • Change Dark Samus' jumping, double jumping, edge jumping, and landing animations are different, with a different sound effect for her double jump. However, her falling animation is the same.
    • Change Dark Samus has an altered animation for moving whilst shooting. However, the sound effects have not been changed to better match the animation.
  • Change Dark Samus' perfect shield animation is different. She performs a pose similar to the one in her artwork for Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.
  • Change Dark Samus' Arm Cannon splits into a segmented appearance and grows Phazon tendrils for some attacks, such as her grab, Missile, forward smash, and Phazon Laser. The color of the tendrils is dependent on her costume.


  • Buff Dark Samus' stance allows her to evade certain low reaching attacks whilst walking or dashing, such as Mario's dash attack and Hero's down tilt.
  • Change As a reference to her Phazon-based attacks in the Metroid series, any small explosions emitted by Dark Samus' Arm Cannon-based attacks are neon blue instead of orange.
    • Change Aside from Missile and Bomb, Dark Samus' Phazon-based attacks also possess the electric effect instead of the flame effect of Samus' equivalent attacks. This changes how their respective attacks interact with others, such as Dark Samus being unable to immediately detonate other characters' bombs with her equivalent attacks, and being able to hurt Olimar's Red Pikmin with them but not his Yellow Pikmin. Dark Samus' Phazon-based attacks also have a lower hitlag multiplier compared to Samus' equivalent attacks in order to maintain consistency with Samus' moveset.
  • Nerf Dark Samus' shield is slightly smaller (12.5 → 12) and she stands in a more upright stance, with the shield centered slightly higher. This makes her easier to shield poke, especially with low reaching attacks.
    • Buff However, Dark Samus' right arm is briefly intangible when activating and deactivating her shield.
  • Buff Both of Dark Samus' rolls have less ending lag than Samus's (FAF 35 → 32 (forward), 40 → 37 (back)).
    • Nerf Due to her larger hurtboxes while rolling, however, Dark Samus is more vulnerable during her rolls' ending lag.
  • Nerf Dark Samus does not use her Morph Ball when rolling, and she does not somersault while double jumping or jumping backward. This makes her hurtbox larger during those animations.
  • Buff Dark Samus' initial dash turnaround animation starts 1 frame faster than Samus' does (3 frames → 2), making her retreat slightly faster. Notably, she is the only fighter with this attribute.
  • Change Dark Samus has a longer duration in transitioning into her dashing animation when performing a pivot dash (12 frames → 15). This extends the length of her dash dance, but increases the lag on a turnaround dash before it can be canceled into certain options, such as shielding.

Ground attacks[edit]

  • Change The visual trail on Dark Samus' foot during her forward tilt starts 1 frame later than Samus' version, no longer overtaking her foot's position in the kick.
  • Buff Due to her hovering in midair, Dark Samus' dash attack has an altered animation. This animation makes her dash attack slightly more disjointed.
  • Change All of Dark Samus' smash attacks have altered animations.
    • Change This slightly influences the horizontal range of all versions of forward smash, with the unangled version having marginally less horizontal range, while the up and down angled versions have marginally increased horizontal range.
      • Nerf However, Dark Samus does not move back as quickly during forward smash's ending lag. This makes it slightly less safe than Samus' version.
    • Change This allows up smash to hit shorter opponents more reliably than Samus' version at the cost of KOing grounded opponents slightly later.

Grabs and throws[edit]

  • Buff Due to Dark Samus' body being able to go past edges during her throw animation, her forward throw can KO slightly earlier than Samus' version at the very edge of a platform or stage.

Special moves[edit]

  • Charge Shot:
    • Change Charge Shot has an altered animation, in which Dark Samus performs the move one-handed. This results in the projectile being fired at a slightly lower elevation, but her hurtbox is taller during the animation compared to Samus' version, making her easier to hit. The change in animation is reflected when Kirby copies this move, but his version of Dark Samus' Charge Shot is actually fired at a slightly higher elevation compared to his version of Samus' Charge Shot.
      • Buff This allows Charge Shot to hit low-profiling opponents more easily, such as a crouching Pichu or Pikachu hanging from the edge.
      • Nerf However, this makes it slightly easier for opponents to jump over the projectile.
    • Change Charge Shot is mostly black and navy blue, with tendrils extending from the edges.
  • Missile:
    • Change Dark Samus' animations for firing a Homing and Super Missile are different.
      • Nerf She does not hunch over as much as Samus does when firing a Homing Missile, making her hurtbox taller and easier to hit.
      • Nerf Her animation for firing a Super Missile in the air is much longer than Samus' version (61 frames → 82). This results in Dark Samus taking longer to grab an edge afterward unless the Super Missile is interrupted.
    • Change Homing Missile and Super Missile have an organic appearance.
  • Screw Attack:
    • Buff Dark Samus' landing lag animation is different, as she twirls while still curled up and hovers slightly above the ground. This makes her hurtbox smaller and harder to hit, while also potentially allowing her to dodge some attacks with low reaching hitboxes.
    • Change The visual shockwave effect does not occur when Dark Samus activates Screw Attack in the air.
  • Bomb:
    • Change Bomb has an organic appearance.
  • Phazon Laser:
    • Change It is mostly black and navy blue instead of white and neon blue.
    • Change Dark Samus' Arm Cannon splits into a segmented appearance instead of using a large cannon ring.
    • Change Due to Dark Samus' Phazon Suit lacking thrusters compared to Samus' Power Suit, Phazon Laser lacks hitboxes on her back compared to Samus' Zero Laser. This reduces the move's ability to damage opponents behind Dark Samus, but conversely the lack of thruster hitboxes makes the move less likely to push opponents away from its stronger main hitboxes, meaning opponents are more likely to walk into or be knocked into the main beam and be KOd from behind.


  • Change Dark Samus has a different pose when trapped inside of a Minecart.

Update history[edit]

Like Samus, Dark Samus has received a mix of buffs, nerfs and glitch fixes, but was buffed overall via game updates. Update 2.0.0 fixed Homing Missile's inconsistency at following Pokémon Trainer's Pokémon any time they were switched via Pokémon Change after the Missile was fired. Missile's range was also increased while Bomb's ending lag was decreased. However, update 3.0.0 decreased Charge Shot's shield damage output as part of a near-universal nerf to projectiles. As a result, its utility for shield break combos was worsened significantly, with the same applying to Samus' version. Following this, update 3.1.0 improved the consistency of up smash's linking hits.

However, Dark Samus received her most noteworthy buffs in update 7.0.0. Like Samus, her shield was enlarged as part of a near-universal buff; unlike Samus, however, Dark Samus' right arm now gains brief intangibility upon activating and deactivating her shield. Up smash, down smash and up throw each gained considerable increases to their knockback, which noticeably improved their KO potentials. On a similar note, early dash attack deals 3% more damage: this makes it functionally identical to the clean hit, and thus improved dash attack's consistency as a situational, yet viable KO option. Aerial Grapple Beam gained slight increases to its damage output and active frames, which improved its spacing prowess. Lastly, update 9.0.2 fixed a glitch introduced in update 9.0.0 that made Screw Attack unable to propel Dark Samus as high as it used to.

Overall, Dark Samus fares better than she did at the launch of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 2.0.0

  • Bug fix Missiles follow the Pokémon Trainer's new Pokémon if they switch after the missile was fired.
  • Buff Missile has more range.
  • Buff Bomb has less endlag when used on the ground (FAF 49 → 47).

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.0.0

  • Nerf Charge Shot deals significantly less shield damage (0 → -2.5 (uncharged); 3 → -7 (fully charged).
  • Bug fix Dark Samus no longer launches herself off screen when grab and Bomb occur at the same time.
    • Nerf However, the phantom knockback would still occur at the exact frame of the hitbox and the explosion.
  • Bug introduced Created visual glitch where Dark Samus's tether grab beam would disconnect from her arm when performed in the air before landing.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.1.0

  • Buff Up smash's hits connect more reliably.
  • Bug fix Fixed tether beam glitch from 3.0.0.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 7.0.0

  • Buff Overall shield size has been increased by 1.025x.
    • Buff Dark Samus's right arm is briefly intangible when activating and deactivating her shield.
  • Buff Dash attack's early hit no longer deals less damage than the main hit (7% → 10%).
  • Buff Up smash's last hit has more knockback scaling (150 → 162), noticeably improving its KO potential.
  • Buff Down smash has more knockback scaling (58 → 70 (hit 1), 58 → 68 (hit 2)), drastically improving its KO potential.
  • Buff Grab aerial deals more damage (1.5% → 2.5% (hit 1), 3% → 4% (hit 2)), and the second hit has a longer duration (frames 16-17 → 16-19).
  • Buff Up throw has more knockback scaling (72 → 80), drastically improving its KO potential.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 9.0.0

  • Bug introduced Grounded Screw Attack covers slightly less vertical distance, no longer being able to reach the top platform of Yoshi's Story.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 9.0.1

  • Bug fix Fixed an issue in which Dark Samus could fall though the stage when breaking Steve's blocks.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 9.0.2

  • Bug fix Fixed an issue where Dark Samus' grounded up special gained slightly less height in the first few frames, resulting in it gaining less height overall than intended.


For a gallery of Dark Samus' hitboxes, see here.

Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack Straight (ストレート) / Cannon Hammer (アームキャノンハンマー, Arm Cannon Hammer) 3% A left-handed jab followed by a forearm club with the Arm Cannon. Despite dealing above-average damage for a neutral attack, it is poor overall, as opponents can usually act out before the second hit connects by shielding or using a fast attack, while the second hit may not even connect at high percentages. Depending on the opponent's weight, it is safe and a true combo at high percentages, but only if the first hit connects relatively close to the arm and not at the fist. The second hit does have KO potential at very high percentages, however.
Forward tilt Spin Kick (スピンキック) 11% (foot), 10% (leg), 9% (body) A wheel kick. Deals more damage and knockback at her foot, while her leg deals less damage and knockback. Can be angled, which causes it to deal more damage, but may cause it to miss shorter characters on the ground if angled up. The foot sweetspot deals rather potent knockback for a tilt attack, which can KO at the edge at around 125%. At varying percentages, depending on which part of the move is landed, it can lead into a guaranteed Charge Shot since, regardless of teching, Charge Shot can catch the opponent's option in time if they are knocked down.
10% (foot), 9% (leg), 8% (body)
11% (foot), 10% (leg), 9% (body)
Up tilt Heel Kick (ヒールキック) 13% (grounded), 12% (aerial) An axe kick. It is almost identical to Captain Falcon's up tilt in both appearance and functionality. Like Falcon's, it meteor smashes grounded opponents, but unlike his, it launches aerial opponents at a horizontal angle. This allows it to set up combos against grounded opponents at a wide range of percentages, while still being a reliable edgeguard tool, due to its wide coverage and powerful enough knockback to KO aerial opponents at around 95% at the edge. At high percentages, the grounded meteor can also set up KO confirms into a fully charged Charge Shot. However, the move has noticeable startup, due to coming out on frame 15, making it Dark Samus' slowest normal attack on the ground.
Down tilt Earth Blaster (アースブラスター) 12% Kneels and quickly thrusts her Arm Cannon downward to fire a small blast of Phazon. It is very fast, due to coming out on frame 6, and deals respectable damage and knockback for a tilt attack, KOing at around 160% off the top blast line. It is useful as a close range anti-pressure option on opponents in front of Dark Samus, or as a punishment option. However, its very high ending lag leaves it easy to punish if shielded or missed.
Dash attack Shoulder Tackle (ショルダータックル) 10% (clean), 6% (late) A shoulder tackle. Deals more damage and knockback at the start and near the middle of the attack, KOing opponents at around 150% from the center of Final Destination, and earlier while near edges. However, the late hit is noticeably weaker, and the move lacks combo potential. It resembles the Shinespark, one of Samus Aran's special techniques that debuted Super Metroid.
Forward smash Arm Cannon Knuckle (アームキャノンナックル) 13% (Arm Cannon), 15% (blast) Quickly thrusts her Arm Cannon forward to fire a small blast of Phazon. Functions similarly to Mario's forward smash, with the blast being the most powerful part of the move. It is one of the fastest forward smashes in the game, coming out on frame 10, while the blast has enough knockback to KO at around 100% from center stage. However, it is rather weak otherwise, with the Arm Cannon KOing at around 135%. It can be angled like her forward tilt, with the upward angle dealing more damage and knockback, though it can typically miss as a result; conversely, the downward angle can hit edge hanging opponents, but deals slightly less damage and knockback. Compared to Samus' version of the move, it has slightly less range.
12% (Arm Cannon), 14% (blast)
11% (Arm Cannon), 13.5% (blast)
Up smash Cover Fire (ヘルファイア, Hellfire) 3% (hits 1-4), 6% (hit 5) Fires five small blasts of Phazon in an overhead arcing motion. This move works best as an anti-air attack, as its multiple hits give a good amount of aerial protection. Conversely, it is unable to hit grounded opponents unless they are close enough to Dark Samus. Compared to Samus' version of the move, however, Dark Samus can catch opponents at a lower height. It is also her most damaging smash attack, dealing 18% total uncharged. However, due to its hits being spread above Dark Samus, it can fail to fully connect if the opponent is hit from too far.
Down smash Spinning Low Kick (スピニングローキック) 10% (front), 12% (back) A legsweep. A semi-spike with decent speed and high base knockback, allowing it to set up edgeguards and punish rolls effectively. The front hit can KO middleweights center stage around 160%.
Neutral aerial Turning Kick (ターニングキック) 10% (hit 1), 9% (hit 2, clean), 8% (hit 2, late) A spinning roundhouse kick. Hits on both sides quickly and can autocancel with a short hopped fast fall. Its first hit also deals powerful knockback, which makes it a viable KOing option offstage or near the edge, as well as a decent combo finisher.
Forward aerial Aerial Fire (エアリアルヘルファイア, Aerial Hellfire) 3% (hit 1), 1.6% (hits 2-4), 5% (hit 5) Fires five blasts of Phazon in a slow, downward arcing motion. The first four hits drag opponents into the rest of the move using the autolink angle, with the last hit carrying the entire attack's knockback. Dark Samus' main aerial move for both combos and protection. Extremely useful as an edge get-up option or against air dodges due to its multiple hits, and using the move immediately after a short hop can hit opponents with the last hit before Dark Samus lands again.
Back aerial Sobat (ソバット) 14% (clean foot), 12% (clean leg), 9% (late) A back kick. It is fast and deals powerful knockback when sweetspotted, which makes it an excellent KOing option, especially when edgeguarding. When sweetspotted, it is among the strongest back aerials in the game, KOing at around 110% from center stage.
Up aerial Drill Kick (ドリルキック) 3% (hit 1), 1.3% (hits 2-5), 4% (hit 5) A diagonal corkscrew flying kick. It hits multiple times and is her fastest aerial, due to it coming out on frame 5. Grounded opponents can be hit by the last hitbox if Dark Samus lands while starting the move in the air, although it is difficult to do so, and risky due to the move's high landing lag. It can be used as a follow-up after a dash attack, grounded up tilt, down aerial, or down throw, all of which can be followed up with another up aerial and/or can be finished off with a Screw Attack. On stages with platforms, it even has potential for a zero-to-death when using a platform to extend the combo.
Down aerial Meteor Drop (メテオドロップ) 10% (early, late), 14% (clean) Swings her Arm Cannon in a downward arcing motion. Hitting with the move's trail meteor smashes opponents, while the edges of the move at the very start and end deal decent horizontal knockback. Autocancels from a short hop, and due to its relatively low ending lag, the meteor smash is excellent for starting combos on grounded opponents, much like her up tilt.
Grab aerial Aerial Grapple Beam (空中グラップリングビーム, Aerial Grappling Beam) 2.5% (hit 1), 4% (hit 2) Fires the Grapple Beam. Due to having only 8 frames of landing lag, it is a useful spacing option and can reliably set up combos at close range upon landing. It autocancels from a full hop and has impressive range, being the longest grab aerial in game. Unlike in previous games, however, hitting an opponent causes the Grapple Beam to retract earlier, while not reducing the move's ending lag.
Grab Grapple Beam (グラップリングビーム, Grappling Beam) Fires the Grapple Beam. It has impressive range and is tied with Samus' grab as the longest tether grab in the game. However, it is one of the slowest grabs in terms of ending lag, making it very punishable if missed.
Pummel Grab Chop (つかみチョップ) 1.3% A palm strike. Has moderate damage and speed relative to other pummels.
Forward throw Grappling Throw Front (グラップリングスルーフロント) 10% Twirls the opponent overhead then flings them forward. Although its knockback has been increased, it remains too weak for KOing at realistic percentages, unless Dark Samus has rage and is at the edge of the stage.
Back throw Grappling Throw Back (グラップリングスルーバック) 10% Swings the opponent behind herself. Slightly more effective for KOing and setting up edgeguards than her forward throw, due to its lower launch angle.
Up throw Grappling Cannon (グラップリングキャノン) 5% (hit 1), 7% (throw) Puts the opponent above herself and blasts them upward with her Arm Cannon. Dark Samus' most damaging and strongest throw, possessing enough knockback to KO middleweights under 150% from ground level and without rage. At low percentages, it can also combo into an up aerial against large characters, as well as Screw Attack against most characters. However, the latter will only connect its hits reliably on a few characters.
Down throw Grappling Throw Down (グラップリングスルーダウン) 8% Swings the opponent high above her head, then slams them onto the ground. A reliable combo starter, with its follow-ups including a dash attack or dashing up smash at low percentages, a neutral, back or up aerial up to mid percentages, and a forward aerial up to high percentages.
Floor attack (front)   7% Swings her Arm Cannon in front of herself and then fires a blast behind herself.
Floor attack (back)   7% Performs a low-level roundhouse kick.
Floor attack (trip)   5% Performs a shin kick in front of herself and then a back kick behind herself.
Edge attack   9% Performs a legsweep while climbing up.
Neutral special Charge Shot 5% (uncharged), 28% (fully charged) Charges a ball of Phazon and fires it. Boasts excellent KO potential when fully charged, and is a useful intercepting move at a low charge. KOs at 70%-110% depending on rage and the opponent's weight and DI. Can be used to break shields if used in conjunction with her neutral attack, up or down tilts, aerials, Bomb and Super Missile. When using her forward tilt to launch the opponent into tumbling, it can set up a guaranteed combo into Charge Shot regardless of the opponent's tech option, as Charge Shot will always catch their tech direction. A non-fully charged Charge Shot has way less ending lag than its fully charged counterpart, allowing for follow-ups and combos at various percentages at the cost of less power.
Side special Missile 8% (Homing), 12% (Super) Fires a Missile, which homes in on the opponent. If the special button is tapped like a smash attack, Dark Samus will instead fire a Super Missile, which stays in place very briefly before traveling quickly in a straight line, and deals more damage and knockback. Both variations deal low knockback, but can be used to break a shield if used in conjunction with a fully charged Charge Shot. Both Missile variations can also be used as set-ups by opening up an opportunity for a grab aerial, or Charge Shot, while the Super variation sets up better for a true combo into a forward jumping Charge Shot at high percentages. The Homing variation is also useful for catching recoveries and forcing air dodges, which can open up punishment opportunities.
Up special Screw Attack 3% (grounded hit 1), 1% (grounded hits 2-8), 2% (grounded hit 9), 1% (aerial hits 1-12) Leaps upward to perform a high-speed somersault while discharging energy. Shoots upward if initiated from the ground, while it gains distance slower if started in the air. A useful out of shield option, due to it coming out on frame 4 on the ground, and deals enough knockback to KO around 100% while near the upper blast line.
Down special Bomb 4% (contact), 5% (explosion) Rolls into a Morph Ball and drops a Bomb, which explodes after a set time. Useful to force an opponent to shield and for edgeguarding, being capable of 2 frame punishes if timed correctly. It can also break shields depending on their health if used along with her up tilt, down tilt, or a fully charged Charge Shot.
Final Smash Phazon Laser 1% (charge loop), 0.5% (fringe loop), 1.5% (main loop), 2% (main loop; point blank, long range), 2.5% (contact blast), 8% (fringe blast), 10.5% (main blast) Fires an enormous beam of Phazon. The beam can be angled up and/or down throughout its duration. However, since Dark Samus' Phazon Suit lacks thrusters unlike Samus' Power Suit, she cannot hit any opponents behind her. It resembles one of Dark Samus' attacks used during her final battle against Samus Aran in Metroid Prime 2: Echoes.

Announcer call[edit]

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The editor who added this tag suggests: Needs announcer calls from other languages.
If you have a good audio file for this article, upload it here.

On-screen appearance[edit]


Idle poses[edit]

  • Brings her Arm Cannon down and then pulls it back up.
  • Rubs her Arm Cannon with one finger.

Crowd cheer[edit]

Cheer (English) Cheer (Japanese/Chinese) Cheer (Italian) Cheer (Dutch) Cheer (French)
Cheer Custom combination of the flags of Canada, the USA, and Mexico.

Source, tweaked to fix rendering issues
Custom combination of the flags of Canada, the USA, and Mexico.

Source, tweaked to fix rendering issues
Description Dark Sa - mus! Dark Sam - Su! Sa - mus Os - cura! *clap 5 times* Dark Samus! Samus Sombre!
Cheer (German) Cheer (Spanish) Cheer (Russian) Cheer (Korean)
Description Dun - k - le -- Sa - mus! Sa - mus Os - cura! *clap 5 times* Tyom - naya -- Sa - mus! Da - keu - Samus!

Victory poses[edit]

  • Left: Raises her arm and lowers it in a fist pump pose. It is based on a pose she assumes during the introduction to her battle in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. It also somewhat resembles her arm's pose shown in the secret 100% ending of Metroid Prime.
  • Up: Splits from a Dark Echo by performing a cartwheel. They then levitate in a circle around an axis before recombining together. Dark Samus then poses with her free hand on her Arm Cannon, which is pointed upward. The Dark Echo's initial movement is based on the introduction to her battle in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption. The final pose resembles Samus' render from Metroid: Other M, and by extension, her official artwork in Ultimate.
  • Right: Turns toward the camera while emitting small embers of Phazon, then the camera dramatically zooms in to her face, at which point two of her eyes flash briefly through her visor. It is similar to the SA-X's introduction in Metroid Fusion.
A sinister remix of the theme that plays when Samus Aran obtains a power-up for her Power Suit.

In competitive play[edit]

Most historically significant players[edit]

See also: Category:Samus players (SSBU); Category:Dark Samus players (SSBU)

Tier placement and history[edit]

Initial impressions of Samus and Dark Samus in Ultimate were negative, largely due to comparisons with Samus's previous iteration. Players pointed out how she lost the combo potential of her dash attack, one of her most useful tools in Smash 4, along with her general lack of mechanical changes compared to fellow veterans such as Link. Her unsafe jab, seemingly unchanged from Smash 4 and once again acknowledged in in-game tips, became a common point of mockery. As a result, there was little confidence in Samus and Dark Samus's success in competitive play.

This viewpoint, however, quickly changed as the metagame progressed. Players cited Samus's improved projectile game and KO potential, as well as her and Dark Samus's terrifying shield-break potential with Charge Shot as one of their primary strengths. Although the latter was nerfed in balance changes, their Charge Shot remains a strong part of their moveset thanks to its combo and KO abilities. Futhermore, both Samus and Dark Samus, the latter of whom is preferred by some players due to her marginally better hitboxes and roll, continued to see success in tournament: players such as Joker and quiK have placed highly at several majors pre-pandemic, while the post-online metagame saw the rise of players such as Sisqui, IcyMist, and Yaura. As a result, their representation in the metagame has been rising, notably peaking in the top 10 in 2022,[1] and they are widely considered a high-tier character, which is reflected in their 25th-place ranking on the current tier list.

Classic Mode: The Great Poison Given Form[edit]

Dark Samus' congratulations screen.

Dark Samus' route features her fighting against protagonists while she is allied with fighters who, at some point in their respective home series, were corrupted in some way. The exemptions to this are Rounds 4 and 6: the former Round features Ivysaur as a partner due to its partial Poison typing instead of outright corruption, and the latter Round is a free-for-all against Samus and Ridley. Dark Samus having teammates is a reference her ability to corrupt beings via Phazon, while the name of her route is also a direct reference to Phazon being referred to as the "Great Poison" in Chozo Lore.

Round Opponents Stage Music Notes
1 LinkHeadSSBU.png Link Hyrule Castle Hyrule Castle (Outside) ZeldaHeadBlackSSBU.png Zelda is a CPU ally. Zelda has fought against Link when she was possessed by Ganondorf and Malladus in The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess and The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks, respectively.
2 ChromHeadSSBU.png Chrom and LucinaHeadSSBU.png Lucina Arena Ferox Power-Hungry Fool RobinHeadWhiteSSBU.png Robin is a CPU ally. The future Robin was possessed by Grima and fought Chrom and Lucina in Fire Emblem Awakening.
3 RyuHeadSSBU.png Ryu Suzaku Castle M. Bison Stage Type B KenHeadBlackSSBU.png Ken is a CPU ally. In SNK vs. Capcom: SVC Chaos and Ultra Street Fighter II: The Final Challengers, Ken was brainwashed by M. Bison and became Violent Ken as a result.
4 SquirtleHeadSSBU.png Squirtle, CharizardHeadSSBU.png Charizard, and PikachuHeadSSBU.png Pikachu Saffron City Battle! (Team Galactic) IvysaurHeadGreenSSBU.png Ivysaur is a CPU ally. Although Ivysaur is Dark Samus' only teammate to not be corrupted in its home series, its partial Poison typing can reference Phazon's extreme toxicity. The respective Pokémon Trainers of the enemies and ally are absent.
5 MarioHeadSSBU.png Mario, PeachHeadSSBU.png Peach, and DaisyHeadSSBU.png Daisy Princess Peach's Castle Main Theme - Luigi's Mansion (Brawl) LuigiHeadPurpleSSBU.png Luigi is a CPU ally. The CPU ally may refer to Super Paper Mario, where he was brainwashed by Nastasia and became Mr. L, or Mario Tennis Aces, where Luigi is brainwashed by the tennis racket Lucien.
6 SamusHeadSSBU.png Samus and RidleyHeadSSBU.png Ridley Norfair Vs. Ridley (Brawl) This battle is a free-for-all.
Bonus Stage
Final Master Hand Final Destination Master Hand (Less than 7.0 intensity)
Master Hand / Crazy Hand (Intensity 7.0 or higher)
On intensity 7.0 and higher, Crazy Hand fights alongside Master Hand.

Credits roll after completing Classic Mode. Completing it as Dark Samus has Multiplayer - Metroid Prime 2: Echoes accompany the credits.

Role in World of Light[edit]

Dark Samus' location in World of Light.
Finding Dark Samus in World of Light

Dark Samus is absent from the World of Light opening cutscene, though she was vaporized and placed under Galeem's imprisonment alongside the rest of the playable fighters (excluding Kirby) when Galeem unleashed his beams of light.

Dark Samus was one of the many fighters that fell under Dharkon's control upon Galeem's first defeat, and is found in The Final Battle as one of the last fighters under his command. She is one of the few obligatory unlocks, and defeating her leads to a fight with Crazy Hand and the subsequent reveal of Palutena's location.

Fighter Battle[edit]

No. Image Name Type Power Stage Music
Dark Samus SSBU.png
Dark Samus
12,500 Frigate Orpheon (Ω form) Multiplayer - Metroid Prime 2: Echoes


Dark Samus's fighter spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 300 Gold, but only after Dark Samus has been unlocked. Unlocking Dark Samus 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. Her fighter spirit has an alternate version that replaces it with her artwork in Ultimate.

In Spirit Battles[edit]

As the main opponent[edit]

Spirit Battle parameters Inspiration
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music Character
SSBU spirit Mother Brain.png
Mother Brain Metroid Series Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadRedSSBU.png
9,300 Brinstar Depths (Ω form) •Energy Output ↑
•Assist Trophy Enemies (Mother Brain)
•Hostile assist trophies will appear
•The enemy favors neutral specials
•All fighters' energy attacks have increased power
SSBU spirit Zebesian.png
Zebesian Metroid Series Dark Samus Team DarkSamusHeadPurpleSSBU.png×4
3,900 Brinstar N/A •The enemy's neutral special has increased power Brinstar (Melee)
SSBU spirit Gandrayda.png
Gandrayda Metroid Prime Series Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadPurpleSSBU.png
Pikachu PikachuHeadBlueSSBU.png
1,800 Frigate Orpheon N/A •Take your strongest team into this no-frills battle Multiplayer - Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
SSBU spirit Zekrom.png
Zekrom Pokémon Series Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadBlackSSBU.png
9,300 Unova Pokémon League (Zekrom only) N/A •The enemy's electric attacks have increased power
•The enemy favors special moves
Battle! (Reshiram / Zekrom)
Gekko Metal Gear Solid Series •Giant Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadGreySSBU.png×2 (80 HP)
3,800 Shadow Moses Island N/A Stamina battle
•The enemy is giant
•The enemy doesn't like to jump
MGS4 ~Theme of Love~
SSBU spirit Gravity Man.png
Gravity Man Mega Man Series Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadPinkSSBU.png (160 HP)
7,500 Mario Galaxy •Hazard: High Gravity
•Hazard: Low Gravity
Stamina battle
•Gravity is reduced
•All fighters have reduced jump ability after a little while
Gravity Man Stage
Bayonette Custom Robo Series Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadYellowSSBU.png (70 HP)
Samus SamusHeadBlueSSBU.png (70 HP)
1,900 Mushroomy Kingdom (Battlefield form) N/A •The enemy's side special has increased power
Stamina battle
•The enemy favors side specials
Marionation Gear Lance
SSBU spirit Helix.png
Helix ARMS Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadGreenSSBU.png
1,600 Frigate Orpheon •Tiny
•The enemy is giant after a little while
•Only certain Pokémon will emerge from Poké Balls (Ditto)
SSBU spirit Amalthus.png
Amalthus Xenoblade Chronicles Series •Giant Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadGreySSBU.png (120 HP)
Robin RobinHeadWhiteSSBU.pngx5 (50 HP)
9,500 Shadow Moses Island (Ω form) •Health Recovery •The enemy has super armor but moves slower
Stamina battle
•Reinforcements will appear after an enemy is KO'd
Praetor Amalthus - The Acting God -

As a minion[edit]

Spirit Battle parameters Inspiration
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music Character
SSBU spirit Kloster (Grief).png
Kloster (Grief) DAEMON X MACHINA •Tiny Snake SnakeHeadBlackSSBU.png
•Giant Samus SamusHeadBlackSSBU.png×2
•Giant Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadGreySSBU.png
9,500 Frigate Orpheon (hazards off) •Attack Power ↑
•Item: Shooting Types
•The enemy has increased attack power after a little while
•Reinforcements will appear after an enemy is KO'd
Mechanical Rhythm Kloster
SSBU spirit Ventus.png
Ventus KINGDOM HEARTS Series Sora SoraHeadWhiteSSBU.png (100 HP)
Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadRedSSBU.png (80 HP)
3,900 Gerudo Valley (Battlefield form) N/A •Defeat the main fighter to win
Stamina battle
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Shrouding Dark Cloud Vanitas

Alternate costumes[edit]

Dark Samus Palette (SSBU).png
DarkSamusHeadSSBU.png DarkSamusHeadGreenSSBU.png DarkSamusHeadPurpleSSBU.png DarkSamusHeadRedSSBU.png DarkSamusHeadYellowSSBU.png DarkSamusHeadGreySSBU.png DarkSamusHeadBlackSSBU.png DarkSamusHeadPinkSSBU.png


Fighter Showcase Video[edit]


  • Dark Samus, Little Mac and Isabelle initially appeared as Assist Trophies in previous installments prior to becoming fighters.
    • Unlike them, Dark Samus is the only one to be an Echo Fighter.
  • Dark Samus is the second fighter revealed to have been cloned from a female fighter (in her case, Samus), with the first being Daisy.
  • Much like Daisy's base fighter, Peach, having a Daisy-based alternate costume in all of her previous appearances, Dark Samus' base fighter, Samus, has a Dark Samus-based alternate costume in Super Smash Bros. 4. This costume was removed in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, likely to make it easier to distinguish between Samus and Dark Samus. This scenario is similar to Ike's loss of his Chrom-inspired alternate costume following Chrom's inclusion as a fighter in Ultimate.
    • Incidentally, Dark Samus, Daisy, and Chrom are Echo Fighters.
  • Dark Samus is the only Echo Fighter who can wall jump.
  • Dark Samus is the second non-Japanese character to be playable in Super Smash Bros., with the first being Diddy Kong. She is also the first fighter in the series that was created by an American developer (Retro Studios).
  • Just like her fellow Metroid newcomer Ridley, Ultimate marks Dark Samus' first playable appearance.
    • On an extended note, Dark Samus is the first Metroid to be playable in any capacity.
  • According to Masahiro Sakurai's weekly Famitsu column, Dark Samus was added due to her popularity overseas, while Chrom was added due to his popularity in Japan.
  • Dark Samus is the second playable female villain, with the first being Wendy O. Koopa.
    • She is also the only Echo Fighter who is a villain, as the rest of the Echo Fighters are either heroes or, in Dark Pit's case, an anti-hero.
  • While Dark Samus normally has a different idle stance from Samus, she will assume Samus' idle stance briefly after using an animation directly borrowed from Samus (such as any attack excluding her dash attack, smash attacks, special moves, Final Smash, or flinching in any way). This is similar to other Echo Fighters, though unlike the other examples (save for Simon and Richter), Dark Samus does not revert to her base fighter's idle stance while holding a small item.
    • On a similar note, Dark Samus dashes on her feet while carrying heavy items (such as a crate) despite floating by default in order to move around. This is possibly an animation carryover from Samus. She also uses Samus' animations when walking/dashing off a platform.
  • All of Dark Samus' Arm Cannon-based moves (except for down tilt, up smash, and forward aerial) alter the Arm Cannon to match the color of her Phazon Suit's visor and highlights.
  • Dark Samus is one of two characters in Ultimate who shares another character's star KO voice clip (in her case, Samus'), with the other being Dr. Mario (who has Mario's star KO voice clip).
  • If Dark Samus is firing a shooting item, such as a Ray Gun or Fire Flower, or wielding a Daybreak and is moving around with it, the sounds of her walking can be heard despite the fact that she floats while holding it. This is possibly due to an oversight.
  • Dark Samus, Samus, Mr. Game & Watch and Pac-Man are the only fighters who do not emit flashing red eyes in the spirit battle preview screens in World of Light.
  • In French and German, the name tag and voice clip from the announcer on the victory screen is different from the one used on the character select screen. In the former, the announcer pronounces her name in a more sinister way (akin to the English and Dutch versions), while the latter features a noticeable translation of "the" (die Dunkle Samus).
  • Dark Samus' description on the North American amiibo website is based on her Super Smash Blog entry.