SSBU Icon.png

Giga Bowser (SSBU)

From SmashWiki, the Super Smash Bros. wiki
Jump to navigationJump to search
This article is about Giga Bowser's hacked playable appearance in Ultimate. For the character in other contexts, see Giga Bowser.
Giga Bowser
in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Giga Bowser SSBU.png
Universe Super Smash Bros.
A boss in Ultimate
Availability Hacking
Tier Banned

Giga Bowser (ギガクッパ), is an unplayable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and only playable via hacking. Unlike previous appearances in the franchise, he is unvoiced.

When playable, Giga Bowser is extremely sluggish, with slow moves all-around that have very large hitboxes. Despite their hitboxes, because many of them take a second to come out, they are very easy for characters like Pichu or Sheik to avoid. Where the matchup shifts, however, is in Giga Bowser's durability: He has an eye-watering 95 units of knockback-based armor that make him almost impossible to launch, with his weight and other statistics further holding him down. In general, the only way to launch Giga Bowser prior to around 250% is with counterattacks and extremely strong moves like Aymr. This results in very linear matchups where the player avoids much of Giga Bowser's sluggish attacks and slowly chips away at him until he can finally be KOed; alternatively, attempts can be made to circle camp him.

In the event of winning in VS Mode, Giga Bowser will be seen with a t-pose. When losing, only his tail can be seen. While it is possible to use Giga Bowser in online play, it frequently results in bans, regardless of whether it's in Battle Arenas or on Quickplay.


Giga Bowser is an extremely heavy fighter with 95 units of passive, knockback-based armor, and cannot be grabbed. This makes him impossible to combo until his armor "breaks", wherein he can be launched and sent into tumble like a normal character. His running is fairly slow and difficult to turn around, but he has a much better initial dash reminiscent of a dashwalk, so it's reasonable to use this instead.

Fire Breath is one of Giga Bowser's claims to fame, dealing around 70%, being decently fast, breezing through shields, and taking much longer to run out. This largely makes up for Giga Bowser's issues landing consistent hits by virtue of his high startup lag, and gives him some defensive play given how much of the stage it covers. In fact, with its speed and often going frame-neutral once finished, it largely replaces his forward aerial in usage. Thus, Giga Bowser can form a game plan around catching landings with Fire Breath. This, combined with his numerous huge attacks, such as forward smash, down smash, up tilt, and Whirling Fortress, he can cover significant portions of the stage and deal huge amounts of damage. With this range and power at his disposal, while he is slow, it isn't possible to just whale on Giga Bowser until he can be launched; he does have to be interacted with.

However, Giga Bowser is extremely reliant on his knockback-based armor to achieve his game plan, which consists of counterhitting most attacks with his own, much stronger ones. This is, by proxy, his only means of projectile defence, as his slow aerials mean he cannot stop them reactively like Bowser can. Ergo, Giga Bowser ends up with somewhat linear matchups where players have to gradually chip at his percentage until he is capable of being launched, which are made worse if there are any projectiles at play, such as Autoreticle or Charge Shot. This is made worse by Giga Bowser's endlag, which makes it nearly impossible to land any combos, and worse, makes him easy to whiff punish. Giga Bowser's attacks all last well over a second, and if he misses, it usually results in an easy 40% through repeated smash attacks from the opponent. If the opposing character has a strong special move, such as Warlock Punch, it's usually free to land it, and these can launch Giga Bowser early. This makes reactive play for Giga Bowser very difficult, instead having to watch the opponent and make educated guesses about the space they will occupy instead, catching their movement through understanding their jump arcs.

Once Giga Bowser's armor "breaks", he is launched at jarringly fast speeds, due to the sudden amount of knockback suddenly being allowed through; additionally, due to his weight and gravity, the launch angles are often brutal, especially from Sakurai angle attacks. This makes it easy to take a stock in tandem with his pitiful recovery, as he relies on Whirling Fortress to get anywhere, and it doesn't have as much lift compared to Bowser's. Ergo, once Giga Bowser is launchable, he is most likely not coming back from it.

Changes from SSB4 to Ultimate[edit]

Data.png This article or section may require additional technical data.
The editor who added this tag elaborates: Movement statistics, Fire Breath frame data, FAFs. Somehow, this is only half of the nerfs.
You can discuss this issue on the talk page or edit this page to improve it.

Giga Bowser is among the most-nerfed characters in Smash history from Smash 4 to Ultimate, due to his purpose shifting from a Final Smash to a boss. Every move is made extremely slow, he lost the ability to shield, his armor was made limited, and more. The sole compensation is a slight increase in damage on some moves, but even there, some have had it reduced.

General changes[edit]

  • Nerf Weight is considerably lighter (400 → 150).
  • Nerf Super armor is no longer unlimited, now being 95 units of knockback-based armor.
    • Change However, Giga Bowser does gain a mechanic that reduces how much knockback he receives, unless he gets hit by a highly damaging single hit attack.
  • Nerf Giga Bowser can no longer use a shield, but he can still perform air dodges, rolls, and spot dodges.
  • Change Up taunt and down taunt animations have been altered.
  • Change Aside from the roar he makes during his boss intro, Giga Bowser no longer has voice clips during gameplay.
  • Nerf Some glitches have been introduced due to a lack of some animations, such as falling from a ledge due to knockback, causing t-poses players cannot break out from.
  • Nerf Jumpsquat is noticeably slower (7 → 15 frames).

Ground attacks[edit]

  • Nerf Giga Bowser can no longer run; by extension, he can no longer use dash attack.
  • Nerf Down tilt has been removed.
  • Nerf Giga Bowser can no longer grab outside of Flying Slam.
  • Nerf Neutral attack's frame data is significantly slower (hit 1 startup: 8-11 → 25-28, hit 2 startup: 10-12 → 15-17)
  • Nerf Neutral attack's angles have been changed, overall making it easier to DI (hit 1: 83 → 80, hit 2: 361 → 45)
  • Nerf Neutral attack's knockback has been reworked to make it connect more consistently, though it overall KOes considerably later (hit 1: 20 WBKB → 70 FKB, hit 2: 20 BKB / 110 KBG → 70 BKB / 55 KBG)
  • Buff Forward tilt deals more damage (14% → 18%)
  • Nerf Forward tilt deals more base knockback, but with knockback growth severely reduced (28 BKB / 110 KBG → 80 BKB / 35 KBG)
  • Nerf Forward tilt is much slower (startup: 12-16 → 41-44)
  • Nerf Forward tilt can no longer be angled, only having the downward thrust from previous titles.
  • Buff Up tilt's hitboxes have been reworked, all of which deal much higher damage, up to 16%, and cover Giga Bowser's entire body.
  • Nerf Up tilt's knockback has been reworked, though it overall KOes later (30 BKB / 100 KBG → 65 BKB → 60 KBG)
  • Nerf Up tilt is much slower (7-12 → 32-38)
  • Buff Forward smash deals considerably more damage (24%/20%/18% → 28%/18%)
  • Buff Forward smash deals much higher base knockback (45 BKB → 100/85 BKB), albeit with knockback growth compensated (72 KBG → 25/35 KBG), though it is still absolutely capable of achieving a one-hit KO.
  • Nerf Forward smash is much slower, now taking around a second to come out (29-41 → 60/54-64)
  • Buff Up smash deals significantly higher base knockback (35, 60 BKB → 105, 100 BKB), with knockback growth compensated (65, 60 KBG → 35 KBG). Like Forward smash, it is still capable of achieving one-hit KOes regardless.
  • Nerf Up smash is significantly slower, and the landing hitbox now only lasts a single frame (17-23, 31-33 → 33-36, 48).
  • Nerf Up smash deals much less damage (26%, 10% → 18%, 10%)
  • Buff Down smash deals much higher base knockback (40 BKB multihits, 30 BKB final hit → 35 BKB multihits, 110 BKB final hit), but with knockback growth significantly compensated (50 KBG multihits, 130 KBG final hit → 40 KBG multihits, 20 KBG final hit)
  • Nerf Down smash is significantly slower (18-34 multihits, 36 final hit → 48-75 multihits, 80-83 final hit)
  • Nerf Down smash deals less damage (3% multihits, 13% final hit → 2% multihits, 6% final hit)

Aerial attacks[edit]

  • Nerf Neutral aerial and down aerial have been removed.
  • Nerf Forward aerial deals less damage (14% → 12%)
  • Nerf Forward aerial is much slower, but the hitbox duration has been increased overall (8-11 → 28-35)
  • Nerf Forward aerial deals less base knockback (50 BKB → 30 BKB)
  • Nerf Forward aerial has increased landing lag, being 61 frames.
  • Buff Back aerial has a landing hitbox lasting 1-4 frames and high knockback overall.
  • Nerf Back aerial deals less damage (16% → 15%)
  • Nerf Back aerial is slightly slower but has a much larger hitbox duration (10-14 → 17-34)
  • Nerf Back aerial has increased landing lag, being 67 frames.
  • Nerf Up aerial deals much less damage (18% → 13%)
  • Nerf Up aerial deals more base knockback but less knockback growth, making it KO much later in tandem with the damage changes (60/80 BKB/KBG → 70/50 BKB/KBG)
  • Nerf Up aerial is a bit slower (22-26 → 31-35)
  • Nerf Up aerial has increased landing lag, being 57 frames.

Special moves[edit]

  • Buff Fire Breath has slightly increased range and deals a bit more damage further away (1% → 1.4% mid-range)
  • Buff Flying Slam deals much higher base knockback with knockback growth compensated (80/50 BKB/KBG → 110/35 BKB/KBG)
  • Nerf Flying Slam is much slower (14 → 43)
  • Nerf Flying Slam deals less damage (22% → 20%)
  • Buff Whirling Fortress now deals 50 fixed knockback, making it connect more consistently.
  • Buff Whirling Fortress's final hit deals more knockback (50 BKB/KBG → 80/65 BKB/KBG)
  • Nerf Whirling Fortress now deals two hits and less damage overall on the ground (19% total → 12% total at most).
  • Nerf Whirling Fortress is much slower (starting frame 6 → starting frame 27)
  • Buff Bowser Bomb deals more base knockback (45 BKB → 70 BKB) with knockback growth slightly compensated (75 KBG → 60 KBG); the landing hit has also been significantly buffed (60/72 BKB/KBG → 120/40 BKB/KBG).
  • Nerf Bowser Bomb is much slower, though each hitbox's duration has been slightly increased (11, 38/32, 1-2 → 33-34, 62/32, 1-3)
  • Nerf Bowser Bomb deals less damage (4%/23%/18% → 4%/16%/10%)


  • Giga Bowser has 95 units of passive, knockback-based armor. It largely works like Tough Guy, but with a much higher threshold, its effects seen in-game are drastically different.
  • Giga Bowser can crawl, but cannot run.
  • Unlike regular fighters, Giga Bowser lacks a dash attack, down tilt, neutral aerial, down aerial, and cannot grab or shield. However, he can use an air dodge, spot dodge, and roll.
  • All move names are sourced from the Japanese Dairantō Smash Brothers SPECIAL Official Guide. As there are no official English localized listings for the moves, many of the names used here reflect the Japanese names for certain subjects.

For a gallery of Giga Bowser's hitboxes, see here.

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

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack Continuous Scratch
6% Giga Bowser attacks with two scratches, much like his jab from Melee. Jab 1 comes out on frame 25, whilst Jab 2 is frame 15.
Forward tilt Koopa Back Fist
18% A backhanded forward punch with a darkness effect. Comes out on frame 41[1], lacks a body hitbox, and has massive endlag, making it very difficult to utilise outside of hitting opponents that are off-stage while Giga Bowser doesn't have to commit himself.
Up tilt Ceiling Scratch (天井ひっかき) 16% (close), 15% (mid), 12% (far) An overarching scratch that covers all around Giga Bowser despite its appearance. Coming out on frame 32, it's one of Giga Bowser's "faster" moves, and one of his best defensive tools.
Forward smash Bull Head
28% (clean),
18% (explosion)
Giga Bowser arches his head forward and slams it to the ground, letting out a brutal explosion. Has massive knockback and damage while covering much of the stage thanks to Giga Bowser sliding slightly, making it very difficult to avoid, especially if in the air. Comes out on frame 60, exactly a second.
Up smash Rising Spike (ライジングスパイク) 18% (spikes),
10% (landing)
Leaps into the air, the shell primed and invincible. Deals massive knockback with an electric effect, with a decently strong landing hit, though the hitbox is a bit small on Giga Bowser standards. Comes out on frame 33, a frame slower than up tilt, so from a reactive perspective, they're interchangeable.
Down smash Buzzsaw
2% (hits 1-5), 6% (final hit) Giga Bowser retreats into his shell and spins, dealing freezing damage before launching the opponent frozen. The freezing effect doesn't last very long, so follow-ups are quite limited when factoring in the endlag. Because it doesn't KO in addition to this, it is largely outclassed by Whirling Fortress.
Forward aerial   12% A downward claw swipe with a darkness effect. The hitbox is a bit misleading, and due to the way Giga Bowser jumps, along with the 28 frames of startup, he may land before the full attack can come out. Largely outclassed by back aerial, which fulfills the same role, while covering below Giga Bowser more effectively.
Back aerial   15% (aerial), 4% (landing) Giga Bowser pumps out his shell, dealing high damage and knockback with an electric effect. Coming out on frame 17 and lasting until frame 34, this is among Giga Bowser's fastest moves, and with a decent landing hitbox, it's difficult to punish as well. This move is capable of edgeguarding and ledgetrapping opponents equally well, though going off-stage with it is somewhat difficult due to Giga Bowser's dubious recovery. Reminiscent of its Melee appearance.
Up aerial   13% An upwards arcing headbutt that's much faster than its Melee counterpart. Deals very high knockback, but coming out on frame 32 still means it's unwieldy.
Forward roll
Back roll
Spot dodge
Air dodge
Floor attack (front)
Floor getups (front)
Floor attack (back)
Floor getups (back)
Floor attack (trip)
Floor getups (trip)
Edge attack
Edge getups
Neutral special Fire Breath 2% (early), 1.4% (late), 0.8% (latest) Giga Bowser breathes fire on the opponent. Coming out surprisingly fast — around the same time as Bowser's, in fact — it's among Giga Bowser's fastest options. It deals extremely high damage and clips shields, covering much of the stage, and by the time it's at its weakest, the opponent will have likely taken around 70%.
Side special Flying Slam 20% The aerial version comes out on frame 16, making it one of Giga Bowser's faster moves; notably, unlike Bowser's, it lasts for an additional frame. While the damage is low relative to the rest of Giga Bowser's kit, it is still 20% and comes out quite quickly on Giga Bowser standards, so it remains useful. While one of the few alternatives Giga Bowser has for recovery, his armor works against him here, with no incentive for the opponent to try and edgeguard him. The grounded version otherwise is exceptionally slow at frame 43, making it very difficult to use compared to the significantly faster aerial version.
Up special Whirling Fortress 2% (grounded, first hit / aerial multihits),
10% (grounded, multihits / hit 1 aerial)
Withdraws into his shell and spins around rapidly, striking multiple times for electric damage. Comes out on frame 27 on the ground, and frame 6 in the air.
Down special Bowser Bomb 4% (headbutt), 16% (falling), 10% (landing) Bowser's ground pound from Super Mario Bros. 3. Conceptually, thanks to Giga Bowser's armor, it can be used as a landing option without being sent back up as a punish, but in practice, this rarely comes up. In general, it's quite laggy, leaving it largely outclassed by his other options.
Final Smash Giga Bowser   If Giga Bowser obtains a Smash Ball, he can technically use this Final Smash[2]. However, it is a glitchy version of the Final Smash from Smash 4, with Giga Bowser first attempting to turn into Bowser, before turning back quickly and glowing green until being KOed. Ergo, it's useless and does no damage.


ImageNeeded.png This article is in need of additional images.
The editor who added this tag suggests: Need GIFs and descriptions - he can taunt
If you have a good image for this article, upload it here.

Idle pose[edit]

ImageNeeded.png This article is in need of additional images.
The editor who added this tag suggests: Need GIFs and descriptions
If you have a good image for this article, upload it here.

In competitive play[edit]

Being a character only playable through hacking, Giga Bowser has been banned from competitive play since Ultimate's release, much like his Melee appearance. He has seen sporadic experimentation, mainly in early periods of the game where he was playable online in Battle Arenas, chiefly by a player named RareKirby. However, this wasn't done seriously and did not come with any talks of an unban. Thus, despite being possible to use online and not difficult to mod into the Character select screen, Giga Bowser has remained banned in all documented online tournaments, in part due to the potential for console bans if used online. Consequently, Giga Bowser gameplay has largely been relegated to experimental YouTube and Twitch content. Outside of online play, due to Giga Bowser's extremely polarising set of traits, requiring a rather elaborate, uninspiring, linear game plan to defeat him, in addition to the logistics of running a tournament with Giga Bowser modded into every Nintendo Switch console, there has been little discussion on unbanning him. With the Nintendo Community Tournament Guidelines disallowing modded setups for Ultimate, this status quo is unlikely to change.

In 1-P Mode[edit]

In Classic Mode[edit]

Bowser transforming into Giga Bowser.

Giga Bowser is fought during Mario, Captain Falcon, and Sephiroth's routes. In the former two cases, his appearance mimics his Melee appearance, first appearing as Bowser before transforming after being defeated. In Sephiroth's case, he is part of a boss rush.

In the World of Light[edit]

Giga Bowser in the Molten Fortress.

In the World of Light, Giga Bowser is first found in the Molten Fortress in the Light Realm, seemingly intended to be the second boss in the game, given his appearance in the final battle. He is fought on Final Destination, and once defeated, the player unlocks Bowser. In the final battle, Giga Bowser is fought as part of a boss rush as Galeem and Dharkon battle in the background.


No. Image Name Type Class Slots Base Power Max Power Base Attack Max Attack Base Defense Max Defense Ability Series
SSBU spirit Giga Bowser.png
Giga Bowser
★★ 3 1655 6700 813 3289 692 2802 Fire Attack ↑ Super Smash Bros. Series



  • Giga Bowser's move scripts frequently make calls for Final Smash variables, implying that the reason for Giga Bowser's character slot is that he was intended to act like his Brawl and Smash 4 appearances until late into development. This is further implied by his Final Smash being an unfinished version of Bowser's Final Smash from Smash 4, even featuring a slightly different version of the green flash featured in the previous game.
  • Giga Bowser's forward tilt has unused data implying it was meant to be angle-able like in previous games, but animations were either never made or scrubbed.
  • While Giga Bowser doesn't have a neutral aerial or down aerial, they do have landing lag values; 54 and 95 frames, respectively.
  • Prior to v2.0.0, entering the Results screen after a Team Battle with Giga Bowser crashed the game.
  • Prior to v4.0.0, exiting a game as Giga Bowser crashed the game.