- Not to be confused with Freezing.
The freeze glitch is a technique unique to the Ice Climbers in the NTSC versions of Melee discovered by Philly Billy. It is caused by performing a grab with the trailing Ice Climber and then quickly using Squall Hammer with the leader. If done correctly, the opponent will be frozen in place and unable to do anything aside from take damage; the only way to free the opponent is by grabbing them or by throwing a Screw Attack at them.
The freeze glitch is banned in tournament play, as it guarantees victory if the Ice Climbers player performs it with a stock lead, and in the event both players have the same number of lives, the Ice Climbers can merely inflict damage on their helpless opponent to force a winning scenario. Since the freeze glitch also prevents the frozen character from performing any inputs and essentially stops gameplay for them, it can be considered an extreme form of stalling.
Barrel Cannon glitch
This is a variation of the Freeze glitch that can be used to get a large number of combos. It can be done by the Ice Climbers on any stage with a flat surface. The user must have a Barrel Cannon and at least two opponents. First, the player must perform the freeze glitch on any opponent. When the opponent is frozen, the player must grab a Barrel Cannon and throw it at the opponent. The opponent should be stuck in it if performed correctly. Then, the player must perform the freeze glitch on the second opponent. Once the second opponent is frozen, the player should throw said opponent at the Barrel Cannon. The frozen opponent should be stuck in the Barrel Cannon and rack up a decent amount of damage.
Andrew freeze glitch
A similar glitch occurs if the leading Climber uses Squall Hammer while the trailing is being thrown. This causes the thrown Climber and the throwing character to be frozen.
- If opponents are hit up or down while frozen, they will slowly move in that direction, which may cause the Ice Climber to be unable to grab and release them from the glitch.
- If a frozen character happens to pass a blast line, they will not be KO'd. This can happen in stages such as Corneria and Venom (as the stage floats around) as well as scrolling stages such as Rainbow Cruise. It can also happen if the frozen character is carried offstage by a Barrel Cannon.
- However, there are certain circumstances where a character actually can be KO'd when in the middle of the frozen state, but they will never re-spawn until the match ends. One location where this can happen is if the freeze glitch occurs to an opponent when they are directly left of Venusaur's flower trunk in Poké Floats. This will cause the frozen character to be dragged off-stage and react to the blast line, but will not re-spawn until the match ends.
- A similar glitch was present in Ultimate as of Patch 6.0.0. This time the only way to undo it was by an SD and only affected Terry. However it got patched out in 6.1.0.