Greninja (SSBU)

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SSBU Icon.png
This article is about Greninja's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. For the character in other contexts, see Greninja.
in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Greninja SSBU.png
Universe Pokémon
Other Smash Bros. appearance in SSB4

Availability Unlockable
Final Smash Secret Ninja Attack
A ninja-like fighter that battles with moves like the Water Shuriken. Greninja can use a log for clever counterattacks, and this Pokémon can even stick to walls. During its Final Smash, it turns into Ash-Greninja...!?
Super Smash Blog, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Official Site

Greninja (ゲッコウガ, Gekkouga) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. It was confirmed on June 12th, 2018. Greninja is classified as fighter #50.

Greninja is once again voiced by Billy Bob Thompson, through recycled voice clips from Smash 4.

How to unlock[edit]

Complete one of the following:

With the exception of the third method, Greninja must then be defeated on Kalos Pokémon League.


Greninja, true to being a ninja-themed character, has very strong mobility similar to characters such as Sheik, Zero Suit Samus, and Sonic. This is notably evident with its walking speed (4th fastest), dashing speed (7th fastest), air speed (10th fastest), and rolls (both of which are tied for the game's second-fastest). However, unlike said characters, it maintains a strong set of KO moves, notably its smash attacks, throws (except down throw) and fully charged Water Shuriken. As with its appearance in Super Smash Bros. 4, this makes it a strong mix of speed and power.

Greninja's ground game is very strong due to its frame data, being among the fastest in the game. To further compound this attribute, most of its attacks have low ending lag, granting it a strong combo game, notably with its down tilt, dash attack, neutral aerial, up aerial's linking hits, and back aerial's first and second hits. Adding on, all of its smash attacks have very fast startup and KO power for their speed, notably with up smash.

Greninja also has a very strong air game due to its aforementioned air speed, jump height, and aerials that are reliable for multiple situations, while they all have low landing lag (except for down aerial, at 30 frames). Its neutral aerial is a decent low percent-combo starter (due to n-air's landing lag being pretty much nonexistent) and can also KO at high percentages, its forward aerial can KO very early at the edge, its up aerial can be used multiple times in a row to easily build up damage, its back aerial is a very fast offstage KO option, and its down aerial can be used to return to the stage or perform surprise combos.

The frog's grab game is also super effective, due to it having the range of three trucks combined, three KO throws (forward, up and back), and a decently effective combo starter with down throw. Finally, Greninja's special moves are effective for varyious situations; Water Shuriken is a high-percentage KO option when fully charged, where due to hitting multiple times, Greninja can rush down its opponent and follow up with any aerial attack (except for down) or an up smash. Shadow Sneak works as an effective "ambush" option, Hydro Pump is a good recovery move (and has been used as a kill move for gimping recoveries and shooting an opponent to the blast zone), and Substitute is a counterattack that can be aimed in any direction upon a successful counter.

Like all characters, Pokemon #658 is also flawed in many ways. Greninja's primary flaws are its inability to break out of combos as well as a relative lack of KO setups. While Greninja has an easier time breaking out of combos due to the lower landing lag on all of its aerials, as well as the buffs given to Substitute, it still has difficulties in escaping combos due to its aerials still remaining relatively slow in startup lag. This can be alleviated with its back or down aerials or Shadow Sneak, but both are not very effective due to back aerial's almost entirely horizontal hitboxes, down aerial's landing lag, and Shadow Sneak's "eyes" now flashing just before the attack comes out. Finally, even though Greninja has an easier time KO'ing opponents, it still has trouble in doing so due to a general lack of reliable KO setups. At high percents, one can down tilt to an up-smash (after running a bit in front) but this is only true at specific percents. Mistakes are not tolerated with the ninja frog.

Altogether, Greninja's playstyle requires players to think like an actual ninja: utilizing running speed and fast attacks to rush down opponents, but while saving the slower attacks for potential mixups, mindgames and surprise KO options.

Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4[edit]

Despite being considered a high-tier character in Super Smash Bros. 4, Greninja has been greatly buffed from Smash 4 to Ultimate. As with all other characters in the game, its already strong mobility is even faster, while its previously situational moves (such as dash attack, down smash and Water Shuriken) are much more versatile. Furthermore, the reduced landing lag on Greninja's aerial attacks gives it an easier time landing, while the universal 3-frame jumpsquat improves Greninja's ground-to-air potential.

However, its biggest buffs were to its grab game, which saw an even faster standing grab, while its forward and back throws can now KO along with its up throw. As a result of receiving multiple buffs with relatively few nerfs, Greninja retains its status as a viable character in Ultimate's early meta with above average representation as of late thanks to Stroder, Venia, Le Goat, Some, Lea and IStudying


  • Change Greninja's model features a slightly more subdued color scheme.
  • Change Every move that once used water katanas now uses water kunai, similar to when Ash's Greninja uses Cut in the Pokémon anime.
  • Change Greninja's tongue has less physics-based movement than the previous game.
  • Change Greninja has altered animations for its sidestep, roll, and airdodge animations; it now disappears in a small whirlwind with leaves scattering, similarly to when Substitute is successful.


  • Buff Like all characters, Greninja's jumpsquat animation now takes three frames to complete (down from 4).
  • Buff Greninja dashes faster (2.08 → 2.288).
  • Buff Greninja walks faster (1.43 → 1.502).
  • Buff Greninja has increased air speed (1.18 → 1.239).
  • Change Greninja weighs less (94 → 88). This worsens its survivability but makes it less susceptible to combos.
  • Nerf The ability to tech footstools hinders Greninja's combo options.
  • Nerf Greninja's down taunt has lower knockback and much higher ending lag; unlike other taunts, it is not interruptible (unless it's used during Shadow Sneak). This prevents it from KOing and makes Greninja more vulnerable while using it. However, due to how incredibly situational down taunt is, this is negligible in normal play.

Ground attacks[edit]

  • Neutral attack:
    • Buff Neutral attack's rapid jab is considerably faster.
    • Nerf Jab 3 deals less damage (3.5% → 3%), and thus less knockback.
  • Down tilt:
    • Change Down tilt is now a downward hand sweep.
    • Buff Down tilt launches opponents at a more upward angle, improving its combo potential.
    • Buff Down tilt has less ending lag (FAF 27 → 23).
    • Nerf Down tilt deals less damage (7% → 4%), and also deals more knockback, narrowing its combo range.
  • Dash attack:
    • Change Dash attack has an altered animation with Greninja stopping halfway through the spin.
    • Buff Dash attack deals more damage (7% → 8%).
    • Buff Dash attack has less ending lag (FAF 31 → 29).
  • Buff Forward smash deals more knockback.
  • Buff Down smash has much less startup lag (15 → 10), and thus a shorter duration (FAF 55 → 50).

Aerial attacks[edit]

  • Buff All aerials have less landing lag (Neutral: 12 → 7, Forward: 15 → 11, Back: 13 → 10, Up: 15 → 14, Down: 32 → 30).
  • Neutral aerial:
    • Buff Neutral aerial has considerably less ending lag (FAF 65 → 53).
    • Buff Neutral aerial deals slightly more knockback.
  • Forward aerial:
    • Buff Forward aerial deals more knockback.
  • Back aerial
    • Buff Back aerial has less ending lag (FAF 46 → 41).
  • Down aerial:
    • Nerf Down aerial has more endlag when it hits an opponent, hindering its combo potential and making it slightly less safe on shield.
    • Buff Greninja no longer loses its double jump when it lands down aerial.
    • Buff Greninja can act out of a missed down aerial sooner (FAF 57 → 52).
    • Buff Late down aerial KOs vertically slightly sooner.

Throws/other attacks[edit]

  • Grab:
    • Buff Standing grab's startup is reduced by 1 frame (11 → 10).
  • Buff Pummel is significantly faster than in Smash 4. It deals 1% less damage (2% → 1%), but is buffed overall due to Greninja's previously sluggish pummel.
  • Forward throw:
    • Buff Forward throw deals more damage and knockback, now boasting KO potential.
  • Back throw:
    • Change Back throw has a new animation. Greninja turns around and throws the opponent with both hands.
    • Buff Back throw's animation is faster, making it harder to DI properly.
    • Buff Back throw deals more knockback.
  • Buff Edge attack has increased damage (7% → 9%).

Special moves[edit]

  • Water Shuriken:
    • Buff Water Shuriken has slightly increased range.
    • Buff Opponents don't fall out of the fully charged shuriken as much as before.
    • Change Water Shuriken looks sharper.
    • Nerf Uncharged Water Shuriken has less knockback growth.
  • Shadow Sneak:
    • Change Greninja now cloaks itself in a whirlwind before disappearing. It may also perform a forward kick to attack.
    • Buff Shadow Sneak's attack has less startup.
    • Buff Forward Shadow Sneak launches at a lower angle, improving its combo potential.
    • Nerf The shadow's eyes flash red just before release, making it easier to predict the attack.
  • Substitute:
    • Buff Substitute's counter window is longer.
    • Buff Substitute's attack has less startup.
    • Buff Substitute slows down the opponent when the attack activates, allowing the attack to land more consistently.
    • Buff Substitute now grants Greninja invincibility during the attack.
    • Change Substitute has more vibrant particles effects.
  • Hydro Pump:
    • Change Hydro Pump now has an arrow pointing in the direction of travel, similar to Pikachu's Quick Attack.
    • Buff Hydro Pump can now be ledge-cancelled.
    • Buff Greninja no longer loses its double jump if it is hit out of Hydro Pump.
  • Secret Ninja Attack:
    • Change Greninja now turns into Ash-Greninja during its Final Smash.
    • Change Greninja and its opponents are no longer silhouetted during the attack.

Update history[edit]

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 1.2.0

  • Bug fix A visual glitch with Greninja's screen KO has been fixed.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 2.0.0

  • Buff Down smash has a larger internal hitbox.
  • Nerf Hydro Pump's endlag can no longer be cancelled instantly by landing on a moving or slanted platform.


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

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack   2% Two alternating palm thrusts followed by a double palm thrust that emits a small blast of water. If button mashed, it is instead followed by a series of knifehand strikes that emit blade-shaped blasts of water that concludes with an outward knifehand strike that emits a small blast of water. It can also be jab canceled, such as into forward tilt, down tilt and forward smash.
0.5% (infinite), 2% (finisher)
Forward tilt   7.3% A hook kick which stops half way. It can be angled and can lock opponents.
Up tilt   4.5% Greninja attacks with his tongue. A good aerial combo starter.
Down tilt   4% Greninja does a downward hand sweep. It sends opponents at an upward angle, making it a decent combo starter.
Dash attack   8% A sweep kick. Sends opponents at a favorable angle for combos.
Forward smash   14% An inward slash with a water kunai. Deals good knockback and has good range.
Up smash   5% (hit 1), 14% (hit 2 clean center), 11% (hit 2 clean sides), 10% (hit 2 late) Two reverse gripped inward slashes with water kunai. It's Greninja's strongest finisher.
Down smash   13% (kunai), 11% (arms) Hits both sides with water kunai. Sends opponents at an semi-spike angle, making it good for edge-guarding.
Neutral aerial   11% (clean), 6% (late) Strikes a ninjutsu pose while emitting an exploding water bubble.
Forward aerial   14% A forward slash with a water kunai. It has some start-up and suffers from high end lag, but it is a viable edge-guarding and KOing.
Back aerial   3% (hit 1), 2.5% (hit 2), 6% (hit 3) Kicks backwards three times. It is Greninja's fastest aerial attack.
Up aerial   1.3% (hit 1-5), 3% (hit 6) A corkscrew flying kick.
Down aerial   8% A diving double foot stomp. It acts as a stall-then-fall and bounces off opponents. A clean hit meteor smashes opponents. The descent can be stalled by using Water Shuriken.
Grab   Grabs with a whirlpool.
Pummel   1% Compresses target with water. It is drastically faster than in Smash 4.
Forward throw   3.5% (hit 1), 4.5% (throw) Shoves the opponent forward.
Back throw   9% Greninja leans forward and flings the opponent backwards.
Up throw   11% Tosses the opponent upwards. One of Greninja's most useful throws, as it can combo into a up tilt, up aerial, up smash at low and medium percents and can even KO at later percents.
Down throw   12% Slams the opponent onto the ground. It can combo into a down tilt, forward tilt, and forward smash and a Shadow Sneak at low percents.
Floor attack (front)   8% Sweep kicks around itself while getting up.
Floor attack (back)   8% Sweep kicks around itself while getting up.
Floor attack (trip)   8% Sweep kicks around itself while getting up.
Edge attack   9% Performs a roundhouse kick while climbing up.
Neutral special Water Shuriken 3%-10.8% (uncharged), 1.0% (fully charged lopping hits), 9% (fully charged final hit) Uses Water Shuriken, which can be charged. Depending on how long the move is charged, the shuriken will be larger and do more damage, however the speed will decrease as a result. At full charge, it hits multiple times.
Side special Shadow Sneak 10% (normal), 12% (reverse) Uses the move Shadow Sneak. The move activates when the special button is released. The way the shadow moves is relative to Greninja's position, and it can be moved further or closer to change how far Greninja teleports. While performing Shadow Sneak, Greninja cannot run, attack, grab, dodge or shield. However, he can jump and taunt.
Up special Hydro Pump 2% (per shot) Uses Hydro Pump to propel itself in the inputted direction, depending on if the special button is held or not, it can be used once or twice. Each shot has a windbox effect that pushes opponents, making it a decent option for gimping predictable recoveries.
Down special Substitute Varies based on position Does a pose, if anyone hits it while posing, Greninja will seemingly disappear and get replaced by a wooden log or a Substitute doll then appear behind the opponent and strike them. If used in mid-air, Greninja will strike the opponents downwards, which acts as a meteor smash.
Final Smash Secret Ninja Attack 6% (the mat), 50% (Total in the attack after mat) Turns into Ash-Greninja and attacks the opponent with a mat. If an opponent is caught in the mat, Greninja will send them up into the air and strike the opponent repeatedly in midair with its kunai, before slamming them down with a final hit.

On-screen appearance[edit]

  • Emerges from a Poké Ball, then performs a ninjutsu hand sign that emits a small burst of water from its hands.


Idle Poses[edit]

  • Crosses arms over its body, then separates them with a flourish.
  • Hunches over and assumes a ninjutsu stance.

Victory poses[edit]

  • Does a few hand seals with splashing water, and then a ninja pose.
  • Performs Double Team to briefly create three afterimages of itself.
  • Does a flip, and crosses its arms.
A small excerpt of the title theme of Pokémon Red, Blue, Yellow, and Green Versions, a track which would go on to become the Pokémon main theme and the title theme for the entire series.

In competitive play[edit]

Notable players[edit]

Classic Mode: Your Turn, Greninja![edit]

Greninja fights against characters that represent different types from the Pokémon games: for example, Charizard and Bowser represent Fire type, and Mewtwo, Ness, and Lucas represent Psychic type.

Round Opponent Stage Music Notes
1 Charizard and Bowser Pokémon Stadium Battle! (Elite Four) / Battle! (Solgaleo/Lunala) Charizard's Pokémon Trainer is absent.
2 Pikachu, Pichu, and Zero Suit Samus Pokémon Stadium 2 Battle! (Steven)
3 Lucario, Ryu, and Ken Pokémon Stadium Battle! (Reshiram/Zekrom)
4 Ivysaur Pokémon Stadium Battle! (Gladion) Ivysaur's Pokémon Trainer is absent.
5 Mewtwo, Ness, and Lucas Pokémon Stadium 2 Battle! (Dialga/Palkia) / Spear Pillar
6 Squirtle and Greninja Kalos Pokémon League Battle! (Champion) - Pokémon X / Pokémon Y Squirtle's Pokémon Trainer is absent.
Bonus Stage
Final Master Hand Final Destination Master Hand On intensity 7.0 and higher, Crazy Hand fights alongside Master Hand, and the track Master Hand / Crazy Hand plays during the battle.

Role in World of Light[edit]

Greninja was among the fighters that were summoned to fight the army of Master Hands.

During the opening cutscene, Greninja was present on the cliffside when Galeem unleashed his beams of light. Greninja leaped into the air to avoid one of the beams, which hit Lucario instead. Greninja was hit shortly after and vaporized, getting imprisoned by Galeem afterward along with the other fighters, sans Kirby. A puppet fighter cloned from Greninja is later seen alongside ones cloned from Fox, Samus, Link and other fighters.

Greninja was one of the many fighters that fell under Dharkon's control upon Galeem's first defeat, and it can be found in the Realm of Darkness.

Greninja is later seen among several other fighters, making their last stand against Galeem and Dharkon. It also shows up in the bad ending where Galeem emerges victorious against Dharkon, witnessing Galeem engulf the world in light.


Greninja's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Greninja 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 them with their artwork in Ultimate.

Alternate costumes[edit]

Greninja Palette (SSBU).png
GreninjaHeadSSBU.png GreninjaHeadRedSSBU.png GreninjaHeadPinkSSBU.png GreninjaHeadBlackSSBU.png GreninjaHeadVioletSSBU.png GreninjaHeadGreenSSBU.png GreninjaHeadGreySSBU.png GreninjaHeadPurpleSSBU.png


Character Showcase Video[edit]


  • In the Pokémon series, Ash-Greninja is only obtainable as a male. The fact that Greninja transforms into Ash-Greninja for its Final Smash, Secret Ninja Attack, implies that Greninja is a male in Ultimate.
  • Greninja's new character portrait resembles its air dodge animation.
  • Coincidentally, Greninja's fighter number, 50, is the same as the number of its costume in Super Mario Maker.

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