Dr. Mario (SSBU)
Dr. Mario (ドクターマリオ, Doctor Mario) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was revealed for the game along with the rest of the veterans on June 12th, 2018. Dr. Mario is classified as fighter #18.
How to unlock
Complete one of the following:
Differences from Mario
Despite not being an Echo Fighter of Mario, Dr. Mario is still very much a full clone of Mario. Both characters are middleweights with the ability to wall jump. Because Dr. Mario uses external modifiers to his stats (rather than directly modifying them), Dr. Mario sports subpar mobility compared to Mario. He has the 16th-slowest walking speed, 7th-slowest dashing speed, 8th-slowest air speed, poor air acceleration, 29th-slowest falling speed, 31st-slowest fast falling speed, average gravity and traction, and below-average jump force. As a result of these traits, Dr. Mario's approach and recovery are greatly inferior to Mario's, giving him sluggish movement in addition to negatively impacting both his neutral game and his edgeguarding skills. However, Dr. Mario compensates for his slower mobility with another external multiplier that increases the damage of his attacks in comparison, as all of his attacks deal noticably more damage without any compensation on knockback, which enables him to KO more easily as a result.
Like Mario, Dr. Mario has excellent frame data, with most of his standard attacks having low startup and ending lag (excluding forward smash, forward aerial, down aerial and special moves). As a result, Dr. Mario is effective at punishing his opponents, while he himself is difficult to punish. Like Mario, Dr. Mario has excellent combo starters in his up tilt and down tilt, since both attacks come out rather quickly, and deal low knockback to the opponent. All of Dr. Mario's aerials have decreased landing lag compared to his previous appearance in SSB4 (but still higher than Mario's), contributing to his combo game, and making setups easier to create.
However, much like Mario, Dr. Mario's range is fairly short, forcing him to fight close to his opponents and limiting his ability to fight opponents with long or disjointed range. Due to Dr. Mario's slower mobility, this is considerably riskier for him.
Grabs and throws
Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4
Dr. Mario has been buffed in the transition from SSB4 to Ultimate. One of his biggest buffs were to his already above-average damage output; all of his moves deal much more damage (excluding his pummel and get-up attacks), which further supplements his damage-racking game and previously inconsistent KO ability. His recovery, while still being rather lackluster, has nevertheless improved slightly; his Dr. Tornado has increased distance, and the readdition of directional air dodges gives him another option to possibly extend his recovery. His Megavitamins and Dr. Tornado have also been given notable improvements; the Megavitamins deal enough damage and knockback to cause opponents to tumble, and launch at a higher angle, making them viable as a combo starter and even giving them the ability to set up KOs. Dr. Tornado, outside of its improved recovery potential, has been significantly buffed; it has gained notoriety for being able to KO offstage effectively at very low percentages, and when combined with its increased distance, make it a deadly edgeguarding option. It also has gained heavy armor on startup if used on the ground, which further improves its safety and viability. Additionally, Dr. Mario has a new down aerial which can meteor smash opponents much like Mario's forward aerial, which when combined with the changes to Dr. Tornado give him an improved edgeguarding game, although still inferior to Mario's overall.
However, Dr. Mario has received a few nerfs. Like with Mario, Dr. Mario's up tilt has had its hitbox placement adjusted, giving it inferior range in front of and underneath him. Additionally, his grabs, like Mario's, have increased ending lag, impacting his grab game to an extent. Furthermore, his already sub-par mobility is slower, especially in comparison to the rest of the cast, given the nerfs to his air speed and jump height. His overall mobility remains largely unaltered from his previous appearance, resulting in him now being much slower relative to the roster (as well as Mario himself), considering as most other fighters have received buffs to their mobility, Mario included.
Compared to Mario, Dr. Mario is still a slower and stronger clone of him. However, he is not classified as an Echo Fighter. There is currently no confirmed reason for this oddity, though it is likely due to Dr. Mario debuting in Melee rather than SSB4 or Ultimate as with the other Echo Fighters. Aside from having an updated idle animation, slightly higher traction compared to Mario, an altered animation for his side special, as well as receiving a new back throw and down aerial, he has not been further decloned. He has also received many of the same changes as Mario.
Compared to his appearance in SSB4, his damage-racking potential has increased substantially and his recovery, while still fairly lackluster, is safer and better overall. Because of these changes, he is better in Ultimate, achieving some representation from players like Locus and Lui$. However, Dr. Mario's overall tournament representation has been fairly limited. Despite his buffs, Dr. Mario is regarded as a low-mid tier character at best, and even a low-tier character due to Mario being contemplated as a much better character, his slow speed, and abysmal recovery. As such, his buffs may not be as significant as other changes that most characters got. His tier placement is questionable due to the young meta of Ultimate.
Throws and other attacks
Like Mario, Dr. Mario has received a mixture of minor buffs and nerfs, but was slightly buffed overall. Though nerfed from SSB4, his already-decent combo ability has very slightly improved thanks to Super Sheet no longer putting enemies into hitstun during ledge return vulnerability. Doctor Finale has seen some minor buffs as well. The universal nerf to projectiles does not affect Dr. Mario, as Megavitamin was already lackluster on shield.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
In competitive play
Classic Mode: Colorful Treatment Plan
Dr. Mario's opponents are all trios of the same character in red, blue, and yellow costumes, referencing the three viruses: Fever, Chill, and Weird.
Note: Every stage plays a track from the Mario universe, no matter what universe the stage originates from.
Role in World of Light
Although Dr. Mario 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. Dr. Mario has his own awakening battle separate from that of Mario, who appears in the opening cutscene.
Dr. Mario can be awakened in a cloud that is found on a pathway connected by a ribbon that also leads to a city-like area.
Dr. Mario's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Dr. Mario in World of Light allows the player to preview the 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 it with the fighter's artwork in Ultimate.
In Spirit battles
As the main opponent
Character Showcase Video