- For the tournament, see Tournament:Float.
Peach's float ability originates from Super Mario Bros. 2, in which she was the only playable character with the ability to float. Super Mario Bros. 2 was a reskin of Doki Doki Panic. In this game, the character Lina had the ability to float, and she was replaced by Peach in the Mario-themed port. Peach is also able to float in Super Mario 3D World and Super Mario Run; in the former of the two games, the float functions similarly to how it appears in Super Mario Bros. 2 and the Super Smash Bros. series, whereas in the latter, it merely slows down her falling speed instead of completely halting her vertical descent.
In Super Mario Bros. Wonder, Peach cannot float on her own (due to the fact that all playable characters in that game except for Yoshis and Nabbit play completely identically to each other), but like all other playable characters she is able to use the Parachute Cap badge to slow her downward descent in midair, functioning similarly to her floating ability in Super Mario Run.
Although Daisy retains Peach's floating ability in Ultimate, she has never been seen using the Floating Jump in any of the Mario games in the exact same manner as Peach. In Super Mario Run, Peach has the ability to float, whereas Daisy instead has the ability to double jump, the latter of which is a universal ability shared by all characters in the Smash Bros. series. In the Mario games, the closest Daisy has gotten so far to actually being able to float like in Smash Bros. is in Super Mario Bros. Wonder, where like all other playable characters she is able to use the Parachute Cap badge to slow down her vertical descent while in midair.
Floating lasts for up to 2.5 seconds at a time. Peach or Daisy can move a large distance horizontally while floating but will not move vertically. The player can also press the attack button while floating to perform an aerial attack, which will still keep them floating after the duration of the attack is finished. The float is a major part of Peach and Daisy's recovery and is also essential to playing them competitively, especially due to the many powerful combos and mix-ups it allows them to perform, as well as techniques such as jump-canceled fast falling, auto-floating, and float canceling. Floating also allows Peach or Daisy to always perform any of their aerial attacks while holding a small, throwable item, such as one of her Vegetables, without having to Z-drop the item first; this allows her to be more threatening against opponents than most other characters while holding such items. Floating can also be used as a mix-up to help Peach or Daisy escape on-stage juggles and return to the neutral game, especially in conjunction with their above-average air acceleration. However, Peach and Daisy can only float once before touching solid ground: this is in contrast to directional air dodges in Melee and Ultimate, which the user can regain by either getting hit or grabbing an edge; and a midair jump, which can be regained by grabbing an edge.
In Ultimate, aerial attacks done out of Peach or Daisy's floating state do not apply the new multiplier applied to short hop aerials no matter how close they are to the floor, always dealing the same amount of damage as full hop aerials no matter what.
The Super Leaf item functions similarly to Peach and Daisy's float, but can be used by any character.
In order to float on command, and at any height, the player must jump and press down when at the desired height while holding the jump button. Once the player has hit down while holding the jump button, they can hold up and let go of the jump button, or simply continue holding the jump button, and keep on floating. This technique has been dubbed the "auto-float" by SuperDoodleMan. Floating at different heights has varying uses depending upon which height the player chooses, but they will generally find themselves floating either at short hop height or just above the ground. If they are falling down, and they have yet to use their float, they can press down and the jump button simultaneously, but make absolutely sure to do so at the same time; otherwise, they will waste their double jump and just float, which could prove disastrous while being edgeguarded. A double blue circle from a double jump or the very distinct sound effect of Peach's double jump will give the player a notice that the technique has been performed successfully.
Float canceling (or FCing) is a Melee-exclusive bug relating to floating. If Peach uses an aerial attack while floating, landing during the attack (whether still floating or not) will result in a normal 4-frame landing as if the attack was autocanceled, effectively skipping landing lag altogether. Float canceling is more potent at lag reduction than L-canceling (which can only halve landing lag, not completely skip it) and is significantly easier to perform, making the technique essential for high levels of play.
Using float canceling to generate effectively lagless aerials is arguably the most important aspect of Peach's one-on-one combat, as it allows her to quickly and easily utilize aerials on grounded opponents to setup combos or pressure, and also makes her much more difficult to shield grab while in the air. Float canceling can be used in conjunction with ground-level auto-floating to allow Peach to jump, use an aerial, and land ready to perform another action faster than any other character. Peach's forward aerial is commonly used in this fashion, as it is useful for spacing and is very safe on shield, allowing it setup guaranteed grabs on a shielding opponent.
In Brawl, SSB4 and Ultimate, landing during an aerial attack performed out of Peach's float causes her to undergo the entirety of the aerial's normal landing lag if she does not land during the aerial's autocancel frames, removing the float cancel technique.
Some uses of ground floating include, but are not explicitly limited to:
- Leading into combos more easily than at other heights.
- Edgeguarding while onstage.
- Effectively utilizing Peach and Daisy's neutral aerial against a grounded opponent.
- Playing mindgames with a quickly FCed neutral aerial.
At her full jump height, the player can abuse the benefits of Peach or Daisy's aerial arsenal, especially the spacing on her forward aerial and down aerial. Peach and Daisy's full jump height can also be used to punish overaggressive combatants or overzealous players who like to jump the gun and attack too early. For example, a player who is using Falco and constantly firing off SHLs, or a player busy SHFFLing, can be punished with a float canceled aerial. Ground floating should be used against opponents who remain airborne; it may also be used for following an opponent's DI from one of her launcher attacks.
Double hit glitch
In Brawl, if Peach stops floating while in the middle of a move, it can cause the attack's late hitboxes to hit opponents even if the clean hit has already connected. This applies to her neutral and back aerials and can be used with precise timing to connect with both parts of the attack instead of just one. This glitch is likely due to floating and falling being considered different states, confusing the game into believing that the clean and late hits should be treated separately.
Jump-canceled fast falling
In SSB4 and Ultimate, Peach and Daisy can cancel their vertical momentum by initiating a float at any time during their jump and canceling the float instantly by falling down. This alleviates their normally extremely low gravity value, allowing them to instantly descend downward akin to fast-fallers after the peak of their jump, and can aid their ability to effectively pressure opponents.