Super Smash Bros. series

Grab

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Mario grabbing Donkey Kong in SSB.
Mario grabbing Diddy Kong in Brawl.
Cloud grabbing Mega Man in Ultimate.

A grab (つかみ / 掴み) is an attack all characters possess which causes them to hold an opponent in place, usually in preparation for a throw or some other followup attack.

All characters possess a grab as part of their standard moveset, which can be performed by pressing the shield and attack buttons simultaneously on any controller. They can also be used with a specific grab button, which behaves like a simultaneous shield and attack input (thus, it can be used for other actions involving shield or attack inputs when grabs aren't possible), and is by default:

Depending on the game, there are different variations of each character's grab:

  • Standing grab (known as Catch internally), which is the default type used when standing still or walking. They have the fastest startup and ending lag, but the shortest range. In the original Super Smash Bros., they are the only type of grab, so they can be used even while dashing.
  • Dash grab (known as CatchDash internally), introduced in Super Smash Bros. Melee, which is used by grabbing while dashing. Thy carry momentum from the dash to give the grab longer range, but generally have slightly more startup and are heavier on ending lag, making them easier to punish than other grab types if they miss.
  • Pivot grab (known as CatchTurn internally), introduced in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, which is used by grabbing immediately after a pivot. This results in the character turning around and performing a grab with even longer range than the other grab types, allowing it to be used as an approach mixup. Pivot grabs tend to have more startup than both standing and dash grabs, and more ending lag than standing grabs but less than dash grabs.

Grabs cannot be shielded, and are thus an easy way to open up a hole in an opponent's defense. Upon a successful grab, the opponent is immobilized for a certain period, and the the grabbing character has access to five possible attacks: a pummel by pressing an attack or grab button (except in Smash 64), which racks up damage while keeping the opponent grabbed, or any of four throws (forward, back, up, or down; only forward and back in Smash 64) by tilting the control stick in the respective direction, which launches the opponent and ends the grab. Characters can only be grabbed for a certain period of time, after which they break free in a phenomenon known as a grab release, so the idea is that the grabber can throw them before this happens. This grab period is extended as the victim's damage percentage increases, but can be decreased by button mashing from their part.

Several special moves are similarly able to grab and then throw opponents, which are similarly unblockable and put opponents in a unique state compared to normal grabs. These types of attacks are often referred to as command grabs.

Properties[edit]

An important property of grabs is that they cannot be shielded, completely ignoring a opponent's shield and grabbing them out of it; in comparison to other unblockable attacks, grabs are available to the entirety of the cast in all Smash games, preventing foes from overusing their shields against any character. This, along with grabs' generally fast startup, their ability to easily punish out of shield, and most throws allowing the player to execute diverse combos and chains, causes them to be used very prominently in competitive play, constituting the neutral game of characters as a triangle where grabs beat shields, but are beaten by attacks as they are outranged by them. Grabs also ignore moves that conceptually block attacks, such as those that provide armor and most counterattacks, though they do not work against foes knocked down on the floor (with the only exception being in the original Super Smash Bros.).

In Smash 64, grabs are notoriously fast, with more powerful throws than in other games. However, pummels, up throws, and down throws did not exist, nor did grab releases (aside from Donkey Kong's forward throw). Instead, pressing the A button or holding a grabbed opponent for more than one second automatically triggers a forward throw. Since Melee, the speed and power of most characters' grabs and throws have been toned down, and the other grab mechanics introduced have since been widely understood as the series' standard. Ultimate further nerfed grabs by giving them more ending lag, and making their grabbox sizes only half as large against aerial opponents, increasing their risk of use.

Limits on grabbing[edit]

An example of a grab failing to connect despite appearing as though it should connect, due to Mr. Game & Watch's arms and hands being ungrabbable

In all games, most characters cannot be grabbed by less central parts of their bodies, such as lower arms, legs, or tails, which can lead to some unusual results against characters with extreme proportions. This varies depending on character; for instance, in Melee, all of Kirby's hurtboxes can be grabbed, but only Jigglypuff's body is grabbable, while its hands, feet and hair curl are not[1]. From Brawl onward, ungrabbable limbs tend to be only arms, with a few exceptions. Furthermore, from Brawl onward, characters cannot grab opponents behind them, even if the grab hitboxes connect with a grabbable part of their body that extends in front of them; this is unlike in Melee, where not only this is possible, but certain dash grabs have some grabboxes intentionally placed behind the user.

A particular character can grab only one opponent at once, and similarly, neither the user nor the victim can be grabbed by another character before the grab ends. Prior to Ultimate, the Ice Climbers are able to grab two opponents at once, with each climber grabbing one opponent. In Melee, Nana becomes CPU-controlled when grabbing an opponent, whereas in Brawl, she can be controlled by the player during the grab, enabling zero-to-death combos as each Ice Climber regrabs the opponent immediately after the partner's throw. In Ultimate, Nana cannot grab at all, nor act while Popo is grabbing and throwing an opponent.

Characters cannot use their grabs while holding an item; attempting to input one will cause them to drop or throw the item first. In Super Smash Bros. 4 and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, characters gain invulnerability to grabs for around one second after being released from them (70 and 60 frames, respectively), preventing chaingrabs and team wobbles. In Ultimate, this is indicated by the released character flashing yellow whilst the grab invulnerability is active.

While non-playable characters such as Metal Mario (in Smash 64) and Fighting Wire Frames can be grabbed, bosses such as Master Hand and Giga Bowser cannot. Most enemies in Brawl's Subspace Emissary and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS's Smash Run (including the enemies inside Master Fortress in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U) can be grabbed, usually those with a comparable size to the playable characters. However, in Brawl, they cannot be held, grab released, or pummeled, instead causing the character to immediately throw them in the direction the control stick is held when the grab connects (forward throw by default). In Ultimate, most but not all Assist Trophies can be grabbed. In Melee, grabbing enemies in Adventure Mode instead allows characters to carry them like heavy items.

Hitting characters during a grab[edit]

While a character grabs another, others that are not involved in the grab can still hit either character, which has different effects depending on the game:

  • In all games, dealing any knockback to the grabber causes them to release the grabbed opponent and flinch as usual; if this opponent is not hit by the attack, they are either launched at a semi-spike angle in Melee, or go into their grab release animation in later games (or in Smash 64, a short flinching animation akin to it). This causes grabs to leave characters particularly vulnerable in battles with multiple players; however, initiating a throw gives them brief invincibility that can negate punish attempts from other opponents.
  • If the grabbed opponent is hit instead, and not the grabber, they can armor through the attack and remain in their grab hold animation until they take above a certain amount of damage. Otherwise, they are released from the grab and launched by the attack as usual, while the grabber goes into their grab release animation.
    • In Smash 64 and Melee, grabbed opponents take half damage from external attacks, and break free if the attack deals at least 6% with this reduction factored in. Hitting them repeatedly with attacks that deal less damage does not release them, even if their accumulated damage is much greater than the threshold; as a result, continuous weak attacks can be particularly effective for racking up damage on them. Additionally, in Melee, hitting a grabbed opponent puts them in their grab flinch animation for 20 frames, during which they cannot escape; exploiting this feature is what enables wobbling.
    • From Brawl onward, grabbed opponents no longer take half damage from external attacks, and they are released if they take at least 10% damage total, rather than from a singular attack. This causes them to escape much more easily, weakening the effectiveness of attacking an opponent while another character holds them in a grab. They are also no longer put in their grab flinch animation, preventing wobbling or any similar techniques.

Interaction with other hitboxes[edit]

Grabboxes are not bound by usual priority rules. Instead, in each game, they behave differently if a grab connects with an opponent at the same time the opponent strikes the grabber with a standard hitbox.

  • In Smash 64 and Melee, the grab has full priority over the hitbox, with the grabber ignoring it entirely and hitting the opponent.
  • In Brawl, the grab has priority over the hitbox, but the hitbox still causes damage to the grabber, instead having them armor through it.
  • In Smash 4 and Ultimate, hitboxes outprioritize grabs; in this situation, the grabber receives full damage and knockback from the standard hitbox, while the attacker is grab released and takes 3% damage (or more if the grab came from a special move and the grab itself dealt damage, like the beginning of Falcon Dive). In Ultimate, however, a few attacks' hitboxes are coded to be outprioritized by grabs, with the grabber taking damage but armoring through the attack like in Brawl. As of the current version of the game, this is only used for Sonic's Homing Attack, Spin Dash, and Spin Charge, and more notably Banjo & Kazooie's Wonderwing (which also causes the grabber to take 0.25× damage from the hitbox).

Likewise, if both characters attempt to grab each other at the same time, the situation is resolved differently in each game. In Smash 64, Melee, and Brawl, this is determined by port priority, with the character in the lower port always getting the grab. In Smash 4, port priority is no longer a factor, with either character having an equally random chance to get the grab instead. Ultimate resolves both quirks by simply causing both grabs to cancel each other out, akin to a clang. This property is known as grab parrying by the in-game tips, and results in both characters taking 1% damage and performing their rebound animation (unless they are in the air, where their grab release animation is used instead). The exact timing of when this can happen is specific to every animation of every character, and may even be assigned to actions that are not grabs.

Grab time[edit]

From Melee onward, grabs hold the opponent for a variable amount of time, increasing proportionally to their damage percentage at the time of the grab (so it is not affected by pummeling or external damage), and decreasing with button mashing from the opponent. In Melee, the formula for grab frames is 76 + 1.6p – h rounded down, where p is the victim's percent at the time of the grab, and h is a handicap equal to 15 if the victim has less stocks or points than the user (depending on battle mode). As a result, players that are currently losing will be grabbed for slightly less time, and the minimum possible grab time without button mashing can be either 76 or 61 frames[2]. From Brawl onward, the formula is changed to 90 + 1.7p rounded down, removing match placing from the equation and increasing grab time overall.

Button mashing reduces grab time by 6 frames per input in Melee, and 8 frames per input from Brawl onward (14.4 for buttons in Smash 4 and Ultimate, but they cannot be inputted as quickly as stick inputs). However, the grab time from Brawl onward cannot be lower than 19 frames, allowing certain characters to always pummel the opponent at least once and throw them before they can escape. In Ultimate, grabbed characters flash yellow when they are close to escaping (180 frames left or less, equal to 3 seconds).

List of grabs[edit]

Character Description Characteristic
All other fighters For the sake of brevity, any character not specifically mentioned in this list can be assumed to have a standard-type grab involving a simple grab, hold, or clinch from the character's free hand(s). Standard
Bowser Jr. Deploys a toylike claw from the Koopa Clown Car and grabs with it. Standard
Charizard Lunges forward for a bite alongside an extra hold with its arms. Standard
Dark Samus Whips forwards with her Grapple Beam. Tether
Duck Hunt Lunges forward for a bite. Standard
Greninja Creates a vortex of water in front of itself. Standard
Isabelle Swings downwards with a net. Can grab and pocket items. Standard
Ivysaur Swipes inwards with both of its vines at once. Standard
Link Super Smash Bros.Super Smash Bros. Melee Fires his Hookshot forwards.
Super Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4 Fires his Clawshot forwards.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Simply grabs in front of himself with his free hand.
Super Smash Bros. Extended
Super Smash Bros. MeleeSuper Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4 Tether
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Standard
Lucas Whips forwards with Rope Snake. Tether
Luigi Super Smash Bros.Super Smash Bros. MeleeSuper Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4 Simply grabs in front of himself.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Fires a Suction Shot from the Poltergust G-00.
Super Smash Bros.Super Smash Bros. MeleeSuper Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4 Standard
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Tether
Mega Man Uses the Super Arm. Standard
Min Min Fires both of her ARMS forward. Extended
Olimar Super Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4 Commands the first Pikmin in line to rush forwards and grab.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Commands all active Pikmin to rush forwards in a line and grab, with the range increasing proportionally to the number of active Pikmin.
Extended
Pac-Man Fires a Boss Galaga's tractor beam from out of his extended palm. Extended
Robin Creates a small magic vortex. Standard
Samus Whips forwards with her Grapple Beam. Super Smash Bros. Extended
Super Smash Bros. MeleeSuper Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Tether
Sephiroth Reaches out with his right hand and telekinetically grabs the foe using dark magic. Standard
Snake Reaches forward with both arms to put the opponent in a restraining chokehold. Standard
Steve Pulls out a fishing rod, using it to reel an opponent in toward him. Tether
Toon Link Fires his Hookshot forwards. Tether
Villager Swings downwards with a net. Can grab and pocket items in Ultimate. Standard
Wii Fit Trainer Performs a Rowing Squat. Standard
Yoshi Opens his mouth and stretches his tongue forwards, holding enemies in his mouth on a successful grab. Extended
Young Link Fires his Hookshot forwards. Tether
Zelda Uses magic to restrain her opponent. Standard
Zero Suit Samus Extends the Paralyzer's plasma whip forwards. Tether

Tether grabs and extended grabs[edit]

Some characters, instead of grabbing opponents directly, throw forward a long rope- or whip-like object in order to grab opponents. This sort of grab is known as a tether grab, based on the tether recovery ability that many such characters also have (or, in Melee, the wall-grapple). Tether grabs are renowned for their very high range compared to most other grabs, but are also much slower than standard grabs, particularly in earlier installments.

Some characters do not have a tether recovery, but still possess grabs akin to tether grabs, with much longer range yet higher lag. These characters are said to have an extended grab.

Characters with tether grabs and extended grabs are noted in the table above. In general, characters with tether grabs also have grab aerials, while those with standard or extended grabs do not. The main characteristic of a tether grab is that it completely relies on a secondary model to work, allowing the model to move with the bone the grabbox is attached to. Steve is the only character with a tether grab that does not have either a grab aerial or a tether recovery.

Notable grabs[edit]

  • In NTSC versions of Melee, Samus' grab can be extended to almost two and a half times its usual length using a special input combination. When this is done, her grapple beam also homes in on enemies if the L button is held, being the only tether grab able to do so, but only grabs enemies if the A button is pressed when the tip connects, and still cannot affect aerial opponents. This affects both her normal grab and dash grab, though not her grab aerial.
  • In Smash 4, Pac-Man's grab appears to be one continuous beam; however, it actually projects three short-lived grabboxes, one after another in front of him, each one further outwards than the last. Because of these blindspots and its heavy ending lag, the move is infamous for its unreliability and high risk. In Ultimate, its hitboxes were reworked to be larger and more continuous, while its ending lag was reduced, making it more reliable and allowing it to beat out spot dodges more effectively.
  • In Melee, Marth's standing grab is notorious for its deceptively long range, reaching the farthest out of all non-extended grabs. Its range has since been reduced in later games, though it remains above-average in Brawl.
    • Likewise, Olimar's grabs in Brawl, despite being extended, have only as much ending lag as regular grabs, making them extremely difficult to punish while carrying comparatively much lower risk. From Smash 4 onward, their ending lag was significantly increased to be closer to other extended grabs, though his pivot grab remained exceptionally quick until Ultimate.
    • Bowser's pivot grab in Smash 4 is infamous for similar reasons, being capable of grabbing characters from unnaturally long distances in combination with hurtbox shifting. Its range was reduced in Ultimate, though it remains one of the farthest reaching grabs in the game.

Special moves that can grab[edit]

Some special attacks function as grabs (sometimes called command grabs, from the similar concept in traditional fighting games). When their hitboxes are viewed with Melee's Debug Menu, these attacks use the same magenta hitbox color as standard grabs. Special grabs put opponents in a unique state that is manipulated by the move in some fashion, and have their own independent rules as to whether and how opponents can escape. They can also be used in midair, and can usually grab opponents in this state, giving characters with access to them another option against shields.

In the following table, a special grab being escapable indicates it can be interrupted mid-execution and put the opponent in their grab release animation, while being mashable indicates its grab duration can be influenced by button mashing. All mashable special grabs use different duration formulas from regular grabs, with the exception of Force Palm.

Character Special grab Description Escapable? Mashable?
Bowser Koopa Klaw Super Smash Bros. Melee Performs a claw swipe to grab an opponent at close range, after which he can either bite them by pressing the B button, akin to pummeling, or use forward and back throws specific to the move. The claw swipe also has a non-grabbing hitbox at farther range. Yes Yes
Flying Slam Super Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Grabs an opponent, then somersaults with them into the air before slamming them down onto the ground. Can be used as a sacrificial KO, but KOs Bowser first from Smash 4 onward. No No
Captain Falcon Falcon Dive Grabs an opponent in midair, then launches them away with an explosion, propeling himself upward and away. Can be used again upon a successful grab. No No
Diddy Kong Monkey Flip Latches onto the opponent, then he can release them either with a clapping attack or by jumping off them. In Smash 4 and Ultimate, he can also automatically deal continuous damage to the opponent while latched onto them, akin to pummeling, by either squeezing them in Smash 4 or scratching them in Ultimate. Yes Yes
Ganondorf Flame Choke Super Smash Bros. BrawlSuper Smash Bros. 4Super Smash Bros. Ultimate On the ground, Ganondorf grabs the opponent by their head and lifts them, then crushes them with dark energy to drop them onto the ground. In the air, he plummets down with the grabbed opponent and slams them onto the ground upon landing. Prior to Ultimate, the aerial version can be used as a guaranteed sacrificial KO. Yes (aerial, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate only) Yes (aerial, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate only)
Dark Dive Grabs an opponent in midair, then repeatedly zaps them before launching them away with an explosion, propeling himself upward and away. Can be used again upon a successful grab. From Brawl onward, Ganondorf also performs a non-grabbing uppercut at the apex of the move if he doesn't grab an opponent. No No
Incineroar Alolan Whip Grabs the opponent and throws them into wrestling ring ropes, bouncing them back towards Incineroar. Three outcomes are then possible depending on Incineroar's attack timing when the opponent comes close to it. No No
Kazuya Heaven's Door Grabs the opponent with an uppercut, then transforms into his devil form and slams them onto the ground. Can be used as a sacrificial KO, but KOs Kazuya first. The uppercut also has a non-grabbing hitbox near its apex. If Kazuya's Rage is active, the move can turn into a more powerful Rage Drive. No No
Gates of Hell A command-input move performed with ↘ ↓ ↘ and a grab input. Kazuya grabs the opponent, puts them behind him, then bends their back and kicks them away at a steep angle. No No
King Dedede Inhale Vacuums and traps the opponent inside King Dedede, after which he can spit them as a star forward. He can also move around slowly and jump with the inhaled opponent. Can be used for a Swallowcide. Yes Yes
King K. Rool Blunderbuss Vacuums the opponent into the blunderbuss at close range after shooting the cannonball, then he can shoot them forward, backward, diagonally, or upward. No No
Kirby Inhale Vacuums and traps the opponent inside Kirby, after which he can either spit them as a star forward, or obtain their Copy Ability, releasing them behind himself and ending Inhale in the process. Kirby can also move around slowly and jump with the inhaled opponent. Can be used for a Swallowcide.
Using Inhale, Kirby can also copy Blunderbuss, Chomp, Egg Lay, and King Dedede's Inhale.
Yes Yes
Lucario Force Palm Grabs an opponent at close range at the beginning of the move, then releases them with a forward thrust. The aerial version cannot grab opponents. Yes Yes
Mewtwo Confusion Grabs an opponent at close range and spins them around before dropping them. No No
Mii Brawler Suplex Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Grabs the opponent and performs a German suplex with them. Can be used as a sacrificial KO. No No
Counter Throw Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Upon countering an attack, grabs the opponent and slams them onto the ground behind the Brawler. No No
Ridley Space Pirate Rush Grabs the opponent, then drags them across the ground to deal continuous damage, releasing them upon reaching an edge or colliding into a wall. He can also release them early with a jumping throw. Yes Yes
Robin Nosferatu Traps the opponent in a dark vortex and damages them continuously while healing Robin, until they are released. Yes Yes
Steve Minecart After Steve hops off his Minecart, it can trap opponents while it keeps moving forward, dealing no damage, but putting them in a disadvantageous position if they cannot break free quickly enough. Yes Yes
Wario Chomp Bites the opponent several times based on attack button input, then spits them forward. In Ultimate, Wario is healed slightly with each bite. No Yes
Yoshi Egg Lay Traps an opponent in an egg for a certain amount of time, after which they jump out of it. The opponent can take damage from other attacks while inside the egg, but not knockback, and damage taken is reduced. No Yes

Hitboxes that can grab[edit]

In Ultimate, a minority of special moves utilize hitboxes that grab opponents when they hit (sometimes called hit grab, also from the similar concept in traditional fighting games). Functionally, these moves have all the properties of hitboxes (damage, angle, effect, etc.), but instead of dealing knockback when they connect with an opponent, they place the opponent in a grabbed state. Practically, the most important difference from a regular grab is that they can be shielded. Additionally, should the hitbox have non-zero knockback, it deals knockback if it connects with an opponent that cannot be grabbed. If the moves' hitboxes are scripted as projectiles, they can also can be reflected, but instead of changing the trajectory of the move, they act as if a regular projectile collided with a shield, leaving both players unharmed.

Hit grabs cannot be escaped, nor influenced by button mashing.

Character Move Description
Byleth Sword of the Creator Pulls Byleth towards the opponent and has him jump off them, throwing them behind him at low percents, and meteor smashing them at high percents.
Isabelle Fishing Rod Throws out a line, hooking and reeling the opponent in, then can use any of four throws in each cardinal direction, much like traditional grabs.
Joker Grappling Hook Throws out a line diagonally upwards, pulling the opponent in and releasing them in front of Joker. Can only grab opponents if used on the ground and if they are not in hitstun.
Ridley Skewer Briefly holds the opponent in place while impaled, then puts them in a crumpled state. Only the sweetspot has the hit grab property, and from version 8.0.0 onward, it cannot cause opponents with grab immunity to crumple.
Terry Buster Wolf A Super Special Move performed with ↓ ↘ → ↓ ↘ → (alternatively ↓ → ↓ →) plus an attack or special input. Terry punches the opponent, holding them in place for a moment, then blasts them away with an explosion.

Initial grab range by game[edit]

An icon for denoting incomplete things.

These are lists that rank how long the hitbox of each character's grab is in each game. Note that hitbox length alone does not accurately reflect how far away a character can actually grab ingame, as where a grab hitbox is positioned on a character plays a large role in how far away it can effectively grab characters. For example, the size of R.O.B.'s grab hitbox is above-average in Smash 4 and Ultimate, however most of the hitbox is positioned inside of his body, leaving so little of it extending outside his body that he has the worst reaching standing grab in both games. Conversely Palutena's grab hitbox is of below-average size in Ultimate, but since it is a positioned in a way where most of it reaches outside her body, she has one of the farthest non-tether grabs in the game.

In Super Smash Bros.[edit]

Super Smash Bros. grab ranges as tested by SuperSqank.[3] Testing method is between the character's bone 0 (position) and tip of furthest grabbox. The scale is different than the scale used in later games, with the conversion rate roughly being range/30 (So Fox's range for example is 400u, which would roughly convert to 13.33u using the scale from later games)

JPN
Rank Character Grab Range
1 Samus's head icon from SSB. Samus 1276u
2 Link's head icon from SSB. Link 1204.76u
3 Yoshi's head icon from SSB. Yoshi 977.9u
4 DK's head icon from SSB. Donkey Kong 691.25u
5 Jigglypuff's head icon from SSB. Jigglypuff 549.45u
6 Kirby's head icon from SSB. Kirby 524.8u
7 C. Falcon's head icon from SSB. Captain Falcon 486u
8 Pikachu's head icon from SSB. Pikachu 464.2u
9 Fox's head icon from SSB. Fox 400u
10 Ness's head icon from SSB. Ness 365u
11 Mario's head icon from SSB. Mario 345u
12 Luigi's head icon from SSB. Luigi 342u
NA/AUS/PAL
Rank Character Grab Range
1 Samus's head icon from SSB. Samus 1276u
2 Link's head icon from SSB. Link 1204.76u
3 Yoshi's head icon from SSB. Yoshi 977.9u
4 DK's head icon from SSB. Donkey Kong 691.25u
5 Jigglypuff's head icon from SSB. Jigglypuff 549.45u
6 Kirby's head icon from SSB. Kirby 512.2u
7 C. Falcon's head icon from SSB. Captain Falcon 486u
8 Pikachu's head icon from SSB. Pikachu 464.2u
9 Fox's head icon from SSB. Fox 400u
10 Mario's head icon from SSB. Mario 369u
11-12 Luigi's head icon from SSB. Luigi 365u
Ness's head icon from SSB. Ness

Differences between game versions[edit]

NTSC-J to NTSC-U[edit]
  • Buff Mario is slightly bigger (x1.0 → x1.12), increasing his grab range.
  • Nerf Kirby is slightly smaller (x0.94 → x0.91), reducing his grab range.
  • Buff Luigi is slightly bigger (x1.0 → x1.12), increasing his grab range.

In Super Smash Bros. Melee[edit]

Yoshi's grab range compared to Marth's. Note that Marth's grab only succeeds due the large hurtbox of Yoshi's nose.

Melee grab ranges by character according to Zeckemyro and SuperSqank.[4] This testing is done by calculating the distance between bone 0 (the character's position) and the tip of the furthest grabbox. While Bowser and Yoshi have higher grab ranges than Marth (who was thought to have the longest non-tether grab in the game), this is only because the long range of their grabboxes was made to fit their larger bodies[5]. Marth has a better grab by comparison due to its better disjoint compared to his smaller size despite having less range overall (which is further complimented by its superior speed).

Rank Character Grab Range
1 SamusHeadSSBM.png Samus 43.0441u
2 LinkHeadSSBM.png Link 35.3001u
3 YoungLinkHeadSSBM.png Young Link 25.3015u
4 YoshiHeadSSBM.png Yoshi 20.5553u
5 BowserHeadSSBM.png Bowser 19.241u
6 MarthHeadSSBM.png Marth 18.7293u
7 RoyHeadSSBM.png Roy 17.827u
8 DonkeyKongHeadSSBM.png Donkey Kong 17.577u
9 KirbyHeadSSBM.png Kirby 15.2123u
10-11 SheikHeadSSBM.png Sheik 14.4522u
MewtwoHeadSSBM.png Mewtwo
12 JigglypuffHeadSSBM.png Jigglypuff 14.1866u
13 FalcoHeadSSBM.png Falco 13.3585u
14 MrGame&WatchHeadSSBM.png Mr. Game & Watch 13.046u
15 LuigiHeadSSBM.png Luigi 12.9875u
16 ZeldaHeadSSBM.png Zelda 12.7648u
17 FoxHeadSSBM.png Fox 12.1555u
18 PeachHeadSSBM.png Peach 11.9914u
19 GanondorfHeadSSBM.png Ganondorf 11.4993u
20 IceClimbersHeadSSBM.png Ice Climbers 11.2836u
21 CaptainFalconHeadSSBM.png Captain Falcon 10.7259u
22 PichuHeadSSBM.png Pichu 10.3509u
23-24 MarioHeadSSBM.png Mario 10.0189u
DrMarioHeadSSBM.png Dr. Mario
25 NessHeadSSBM.png Ness 9.9603u
26 PikachuHeadSSBM.png Pikachu 9.8431u

In Super Smash Bros. Brawl[edit]

Brawl grab ranges by Zeckemyro[6] and SuperSqank.[7] The units displayed are raw range between the character's position in 3D space (TopN bone/bone 0) and the tip of the furthest grabbox in in-game units.

Rank Character Grab range
1 SamusHeadSSBB.png Samus 39.0u
2-3 ZeroSuitSamusHeadSSBB.png Zero Suit Samus 35.75u
2-3 OlimarHeadSSBB.png Olimar (B./W. Pikmin) 35.75u
4 OlimarHeadSSBB.png Olimar (R./Y. Pikmin) 34.25u
5 LinkHeadSSBB.png Link 31.8u
6 YoshiHeadSSBB.png Yoshi 28.04u
7 ToonLinkHeadSSBB.png Toon Link 27.7u
8 LucasHeadSSBB.png Lucas 25.65u
9 CharizardHeadSSBB.png Charizard 25.57u
10 OlimarHeadSSBB.png Olimar (P. Pikmin) 25.5u
11 BowserHeadSSBB.png Bowser 23.5u
12 IvysaurHeadSSBB.png Ivysaur 23.0u
13 KingDededeHeadSSBB.png King Dedede 22.09u
14 DonkeyKongHeadSSBB.png Donkey Kong 21.24u
15 ROBHeadSSBB.png R.O.B. 16.5u
16 KirbyHeadSSBB.png Kirby 16.04u
17 MetaKnightHeadSSBB.png Meta Knight 16.0u
18 MarthHeadSSBB.png Marth 15.68u
19-22 JigglypuffHeadSSBB.png Jigglypuff 15.5u
WarioHeadSSBB.png Wario
SnakeHeadSSBB.png Snake
SquirtleHeadSSBB.png Squirtle
23 DiddyKongHeadSSBB.png Diddy Kong 15.0u
24 ZeldaHeadSSBB.png Zelda 14.8u
25 IkeHeadSSBB.png Ike 14.3u
26-27 FoxHeadSSBB.png Fox 13.8u
FalcoHeadSSBB.png Falco
28 WolfHeadSSBB.png Wolf 13.3u
29 PitHeadSSBB.png Pit 13.0u
30 GanondorfHeadSSBB.png Ganondorf 12.8u
31-32 SheikHeadSSBB.png Sheik 12.5u
MrGame&WatchHeadSSBB.png Mr. Game & Watch
33-35 CaptainFalconHeadSSBB.png Captain Falcon 12.0u
PeachHeadSSBB.png Peach
LucarioHeadSSBB.png Lucario
36 IceClimbersHeadSSBB.png Ice Climbers 11.8u
37-38 MarioHeadSSBB.png Mario 11.76u
LuigiHeadSSBB.png Luigi
39-40 PikachuHeadSSBB.png Pikachu 11.5u
SonicHeadSSBB.png Sonic
41 NessHeadSSBB.png Ness 10.8u

In Super Smash Bros. 4[edit]

Smash 4 grab ranges by Zeckemyro[8] and extra data for tether and extended grabs from SuperSqank. Numbers are raw horizontal range from the character's bone 0 position and the tip of the furthest grabbox. Certain tether and extended grabs will have asterisks next to their range due to not being able to get perfectly accurate values. Despite the innacurate values, the placements in this ranking are accurate.

Rank Character Grab range
1 SamusHeadSSB4-U.png Samus 40.0u*
2 Zero Suit Samus's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Zero Suit Samus 37.0u*
3 Link's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Link 36.0u*
4 Olimar's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Olimar (W. Pikmin) 30.0u*
5 Toon Link's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Toon Link 29.0u*
6 Pac-Man's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Pac-Man 28.0u
7 Yoshi's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Yoshi 26.65u
8 Olimar's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Olimar (R./B./Y. Pikmin) 26.0u*
9 LucasHeadSSB4-U.png Lucas 24.0u*
10 Olimar's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Olimar (P. Pikmin) 22.3u*
11 Bowser's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Bowser 20.0u
12 Donkey Kong's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Donkey Kong 19.5u
13-14 Charizard's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Charizard 19.0u
Villager's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Villager
15 Greninja's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Greninja 18.5u
16 Bowser Jr.'s stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Bowser Jr. 17.0u
17 King Dedede's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. King Dedede 16.0u
18 Zelda's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Zelda 15.3u
19-20 Palutena's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Palutena 15.0u
Duck Hunt's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Duck Hunt
21-22 Marth's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Marth 14.5u
Lucina's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Lucina
23 Mewtwo's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mewtwo 14.3u
24 RoyHeadSSB4-U.png Roy 14.2u
25 Rosalina and Luma's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Rosalina & Luma 14.0u
26 Lucario's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Lucario 13.5u
27 R.O.B.'s stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. R.O.B. 13.4u
28 Kirby's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Kirby 13.3u
29-36 Captain Falcon's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Captain Falcon 13.0u
Ganondorf's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Ganondorf
Meta Knight's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Meta Knight
Pit's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Pit
Dark Pit's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Dark Pit
Wario's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Wario
Sonic's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Sonic
Shulk's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Shulk
37-39 Mr. Game & Watch's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mr. Game & Watch 12.5u
Ike's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Ike
Robin's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Robin
40-56 Mario's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mario 12.0u
Fox's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Fox
Luigi's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Luigi
Ness's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Ness
Jigglypuff's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Jigglypuff
Peach's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Peach
Sheik's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Sheik
Dr. Mario's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Dr. Mario
Falco's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Falco
Diddy Kong's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Diddy Kong
Mega Man's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mega Man
Mii Brawler's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mii Brawler
Mii Swordfighter's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mii Swordfighter
Mii Gunner's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Mii Gunner
CloudHeadSSB4-U.png Cloud
CorrinHeadSSB4-U.png Corrin
BayonettaHeadSSB4-U.png Bayonetta
57-58 Pikachu's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Pikachu 11.2u
RyuHeadSSB4-U.png Ryu
59-60 Wii Fit Trainer's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Wii Fit Trainer 11.0u
Little Mac's stock icon in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. Little Mac

Update History[edit]

1.0.4[edit]
  • Nerf Palutena's pivot grab's range was slightly decreased (Z2 offset: 19.4 → 17.4).
  • Nerf Zelda's pivot grab's range was decreased (Z2 offset: -18.7 → -15.7).
1.0.8[edit]
  • Nerf All of Diddy Kong's grabs have 3 more frames of ending lag (FAF: 29 → 32 (standing), 36 → 39 (dash), 34 → 37 (pivot)).
  • Buff Super Smash Bros. for Wii UClawshot now behaves like it does in the Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS version. Link's grab range has been doubled in terms of Clawshot length and grab distance. Clawshot also grabs just before it droops back down to the ground, while Link's standing grab has been sped up by two frames.
  • Buff Link's grabs have less ending lag (FAF: 67/78/80 → 62/66/67).
  • Buff Samus's standing and pivot grabs have less ending lag (FAF: 80/92 → 76/88).
  • Buff Villager's grabs have less ending lag (FAF: 58/72/66 → 56/70/65).
1.1.0[edit]
  • Buff Link's dash grab and pivot grab are both 1 frame faster.
  • Buff Lucas's grabboxes are bigger (2.5 → 3.0 (early), 2.4 → 2.8 (late)) for all grabs.
  • Buff Palutena's grabs have 2 less frames of ending lag.
  • Buff Toon Link's dash grab is 2 frames faster and his pivot grab is 1 frame faster.
  • Change Wii Fit Trainer's grabboxes on all grabs are placed lower.
1.1.3[edit]
  • Buff Lucas's standing grab and dash grab had their ending lag decreased (FAF: 51/61 → 46/56).
  • Change Lucas's grabs have sped up animations.
1.1.5[edit]
  • Buff Greninja's standing grab has 3 frames less of startup: 14 frames → 11.
  • Buff Samus's grabs have decreased ending lag (FAF: 76/74/88 → 70/68/84).
  • Buff Zelda's grabs have more reach(Z2 offset: 10.5 (standing)/13.5 (dash)/-15.7 (pivot) → 11.5/14.5/-16.7).
  • Nerf Zero Suit Samus's grabs had their duration reduced by 4 frames with identical startup.

In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate[edit]

Grab ranges in Ultimate as tested by Zeckemyro[9] and CrimsonStarfall[10]. The number besides each position indicates the range using in-game units. Extended grabs will be followed by an asterisk (*) due to only being approximations. Their range was tested and is placed correctly. Jostle and the height of the grabboxes can affect their consistency in the midst of battle. The grabs are listed based on their raw horizontal range.

Rank Character Grab range
1-2 SamusHeadSSBU.png Samus 42.2u
DarkSamusHeadSSBU.png Dark Samus
3 MinMinHeadSSBU.png Min Min 40.0u*
4 ZeroSuitSamusHeadSSBU.png Zero Suit Samus 37.0u
5 OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (W. Pikmin + 2) 36.5u*
6 OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (W. Pikmin + 1) 33.5u*
7 Steve's stock icon. Steve 31.9u
8 LuigiHeadSSBU.png Luigi 29.8u
9 OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (R./B./Y. Pikmin + 2) 29.7u*
10-11 YoungLinkHeadSSBU.png Young Link 29.5u
OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (W. Pikmin)
12-14 OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (R./B./Y. Pikmin + 1) 28.2u*
ToonLinkHeadSSBU.png Toon Link
Pac-ManHeadSSBU.png Pac-Man
15 YoshiHeadSSBU.png Yoshi 26.0u*
16-17 OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (R./B./Y. Pikmin) 23.6u*
OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (P. Pikmin + 2)
18 IvysaurHeadSSBU.png Ivysaur 23.0u
19-20 LucasHeadSSBU.png Lucas 22.9u
OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (P. Pikmin + 1)
21 OlimarHeadSSBU.png Olimar (P. Pikmin) 22.0u*
22 CharizardHeadSSBU.png Charizard 21.4u
23-24 BowserHeadSSBU.png Bowser 20.0u
KingKRoolHeadSSBU.png King K. Rool
25 DonkeyKongHeadSSBU.png Donkey Kong 19.5u
26-27 VillagerHeadSSBU.png Villager 19.0u
IsabelleHeadSSBU.png Isabelle
28 GreninjaHeadSSBU.png Greninja 18.5u
29 BowserJrHeadSSBU.png Bowser Jr. 18.0u
30 KingDededeHeadSSBU.png King Dedede 17.0u
31 RidleyHeadSSBU.png Ridley 16.5u
32 IncineroarHeadSSBU.png Incineroar 16.0u
33 SnakeHeadSSBU.png Snake 15.5u
34 ZeldaHeadSSBU.png Zelda 15.3u
35 KazuyaHeadSSBU.png Kazuya 15.2u
36 MiiGunnerHeadSSBU.png Mii Gunner 14.8u
37-39 MarthHeadSSBU.png Marth 14.5u
LucinaHeadSSBU.png Lucina
DuckHuntHeadSSBU.png Duck Hunt
40 ROBHeadSSBU.png R.O.B. 14.4u
41-42 MewtwoHeadSSBU.png Mewtwo 14.3u
PiranhaPlantHeadSSBU.png Piranha Plant
43-44 RoyHeadSSBU.png Roy 14.2u
ChromHeadSSBU.png Chrom
45-48 GanondorfHeadSSBU.png Ganondorf 14.0u
WarioHeadSSBU.png Wario
SquirtleHeadSSBU.png Squirtle
RosalinaHeadSSBU.png Rosalina & Luma
49 TerryHeadSSBU.png Terry 13.7u
50 LucarioHeadSSBU.png Lucario 13.5u
51 Banjo&KazooieHeadSSBU.png Banjo & Kazooie 13.2u
52-56 CaptainFalconHeadSSBU.png Captain Falcon 13.0u
PitHeadSSBU.png Pit
DarkPitHeadSSBU.png Dark Pit
PalutenaHeadSSBU.png Palutena
RobinHeadSSBU.png Robin
57 LittleMacHeadSSBU.png Little Mac 12.9u
58-63 KirbyHeadSSBU.png Kirby 12.5u
SheikHeadSSBU.png Sheik
MrGame&WatchHeadSSBU.png Mr. Game & Watch
MegaManHeadSSBU.png Mega Man
ShulkHeadSSBU.png Shulk
BayonettaHeadSSBU.png Bayonetta
64-65 JokerHeadSSBU.png Joker 12.3u
BylethHeadSSBU.png Byleth
66-84 MarioHeadSSBU.png Mario 12.0u
DrMarioHeadSSBU.png Dr. Mario
CloudHeadSSBU.png Cloud
SimonHeadSSBU.png Simon
RichterHeadSSBU.png Richter
NessHeadSSBU.png Ness
JigglypuffHeadSSBU.png Jigglypuff
PeachHeadSSBU.png Peach
DaisyHeadSSBU.png Daisy
PichuHeadSSBU.png Pichu
FalcoHeadSSBU.png Falco
SonicHeadSSBU.png Sonic
WolfHeadSSBU.png Wolf
MiiBrawlerHeadSSBU.png Mii Brawler
MiiSwordfighterHeadSSBU.png Mii Swordfighter
InklingHeadSSBU.png Inkling
Sephiroth's stock icon. Sephiroth
PyraHeadSSBU.png Pyra
MythraHeadSSBU.png Mythra
85 PikachuHeadSSBU.png Pikachu 11.9u
86 CorrinHeadSSBU.png Corrin 11.8u
87-88 RyuHeadSSBU.png Ryu 11.6u
KenHeadSSBU.png Ken
89-92 MetaKnightHeadSSBU.png Meta Knight 11.5u
IkeHeadSSBU.png Ike
DiddyKongHeadSSBU.png Diddy Kong
WiiFitTrainerHeadSSBU.png Wii Fit Trainer
93-94 LinkHeadSSBU.png Link 11.0u
FoxHeadSSBU.png Fox
95 HeroHeadSSBU.png Hero 10.3u
96 IceClimbersHeadSSBU.png Ice Climbers 10.0u

Update history[edit]

2.0.0[edit]
  • Buff Luigi's standing and pivot grabs were given a longer duration (6 frames → 7) to match dash grab.
3.0.0[edit]
  • Buff The grounded-only grabboxes of the dash grabs of Marth, Lucina, Roy and Chrom were made bigger (2.6u → 3.0u) and placed higher (Y offsets: 7.0 → 7.25). This notably prevents them from missing a shielding R.O.B..
3.1.0[edit]
  • Buff Pikachu's standing grab was given more range (11.0u → 11.9u).
7.0.0[edit]
  • Buff Sheik's standing grab has more range (Z2 offset: 7.9 (grounded)/9.45 (aerial) → 9.4/10.95).
8.0.0[edit]
  • Buff Lucas's pivot grab stretches farther towards Lucas (Z offset: 0.5u → 3.5u), making it less likely to whiff at point-blank range.
  • Buff Incineroar's grabs have one frame faster startup (frame 8 → 7 (standing), 12 → 11 (dash), 13 → 12 (pivot)), with their total duration reduced as well (FAF 39/47/45 → 38/46/44).
11.0.0[edit]
  • Nerf Palutena's standing grab has considerably less range (Z2 offset: 11.4 (grounded)/13.2 (aerial) → 9.4/11.2)

Trivia[edit]

  • Only two characters in the series – Luigi and Link – have had their grab type outright changed, with Link's grab changing from tether to standard, and Luigi's grab changing from standard to tether. Both of these changes occurred in Ultimate.
  • In Melee, characters hanging on ledges cannot be grabbed, but in every other game they can. This can be done if a certain character's grab animation is low enough to be able to grab a character hanging from a ledge if the latter character's head is above the ledge. An example video for SSB4 can be seen here. Example for SSB can be seen here
  • Grabs are the only non-special moves to not cause the player's controller to rumble (should the feature be turned on) when used, only doing so if the grab connects with an opponent.

See also[edit]

References[edit]