King Dedede (SSBB)/Down throw
King Dedede positions his opponent underneath him and then sits on them, knocking them away at a low horizontal angle. The move has an initial hit before the throw and then King Dedede performs the throw, with both dealing 4% each for a total of 8%. The throw does take some time to set up but it does have relatively low ending lag.
King Dedede's down throw is rather unique as it possesses set knockback. Because of this, its knockback is always consistent, regardless of the opponent's percent and the throw's knockback does not decrease with stale move negation, although when the throw is stale enough, the throw will deal one frame less hitlag (due to the throw's lower damage), giving King Dedede one more frame of ending lag after a down throw. Against characters who weigh less than 86 units, the throw puts the opponent into tumble, which can allow King Dedede to potentially set up a tech chase depending on the opponent's DI but outside of its low launch angle, the throw is overall not too effective against the lightest characters, with forward throw or especially back throw being potentially stronger options due to their higher damage. King Dedede does not get any guaranteed followups against lighter characters and his overall slow speed means that he cannot easily chase his opponents, although it is still a useful throw to give King Dedede stage control.
Against characters who weigh over 85 units however, down throw does not put the opponent into tumble, with the opponent suffering from a high amount of hitstun. This allows King Dedede to get guaranteed followups out of down throw, including a forward tilt or a down tilt. The most powerful followup King Dedede can get however is another grab. Down throw's low ending lag, combined with King Dedede's fast and long ranged grabs allow him to get a dash grab. The move functions similarly to Fox's shine in Melee in this regard, with both move's having identical knockback and their utility varying in comparable ways against the same weight classes.
Because King Dedede can get a guaranteed regrab against his opponent after a down throw (as long as they are heavy enough to not get knocked down by the down throw), this means that King Dedede can chain together multiple down throws across the stage to rack up a significant amount of damage. On a stage with walk off blastzones, King Dedede can continue down throwing his opponent until they reach the blastzone and get KOes, which naturally makes him an extremely powerful character on these stages, as a single grab at any percent will result in the opponent getting KOed. On stages with walls, King Dedede can simply stand still and continue down throwing the opponent for as long as he chooses (as long as the wall remains), which is naturally incredibly powerful. On other stages, King Dedede can continue down throwing the opponent until they reach the ledge which on tournament legal stages, can deal around 30-40% if he chain grabs them from one side of the stage to the other. King Dedede can optimise his down throw chain grab by performing a skid cancel grab rather than a dash grab, which results in King Dedede travelling less distance between each grab, allowing him to get more grabs and down throws in for more damage.
While King Dedede can get a run up down throw chain grab against every character who weighs over 85 units, King Dedede can chaingrab some characters without needing to run up. Against heavier and larger characters in particular, King Dedede can simply walk up to the opponent and then grab them. This allows King Dedede to build up a ton of damage on his opponent which depending on the character, can be in the high double digits. King Dedede can then often followup with a move like forward tilt or down tilt to end the chain grab and potentially KO the opponent.
Against a handful of characters, King Dedede can even chaingrab the opponent by standing still. King Dedede simply needs to buffer a standing grab after performing a down throw to make sure that it comes out as soon as possible. This allows King Dedede to essentially infinite his opponent, down throwing them as many times as the player wants. This can work from center stage or near the edge depending on the character. Against some characters, this is a true infinite depending on where it is set up although on others, the infinite will stop working once down throw becomes too stale, due to the lower hitlag the throw causes when it is too stale, which results in the grab whiffing. The down throw can be un-stalled if King Dedede performs a pummel after the 5th down throw, which can keep the proceeding down throw un-stalled enough to allow the chain grab to work (which can be looped infinitely) although depending on the percent, stronger players may be able to mash out of the pummel before King Dedede gets the chance to down throw his opponent again.
There is additionally another way King Dedede can potentially perform a standing infinite with his down throw although it is extremely difficult. If King Dedede buffers a pivot grab (by pressing down back → down → down back → down forward + grab → let go of grab, all within the 10 frame buffer window), he can potentially regrab his opponent in situations his normal grab cannot, due to the greater range on his pivot grab. This can allow King Dedede to infinite characters he normally would not be able to (or at least chain together down throws until the throw becomes too stale). While this is quite a useful tool on paper, it is extremely difficult to perform in practice, due to the fact that the player has to perform a very awkward string of inputs in a very short timespan. Its extreme difficulty to pull off (especially consistently) combined with the fact that it was only useful in a few matchups (with Snake, Wolf, Wario and R.O.B being the only characters in the upper half of the tier list where it could be utilised, with the technique being heavily stage/position dependent on the latter two characters) meant that even top level King Dedede players rarely utilised this technique.
One final thing to note about down throw is that if King Dedede down throw's an opponent with RCO lag, they will suffer from much more lag than usual, due to the extra landing lag caused by RCO. Against characters who are not knocked down by the down throw, this naturally gives King Dedede significantly more time to followup, as the opponent is forced into their landing animation after the down throw's hitstun ends, with no way to avoid it. In most cases, this can lead into a guaranteed dash attack or an up tilt for a potential KO confirm. Against Wolf, Charizard and Ganondorf specifically, King Dedede even has enough time to land a guaranteed forward smash for a KO confirm at very low percents. This is overall situational but it can be useful when applicable.
Overall, King Dedede's down throw is one of the best throws in the entire game due to its high damage racking potentially against a significant portion of the cast. While its effectiveness is heavily dependent on the matchup, the matchups where it is effective, it is highly effective. It is such an important tool in King Dedede's tool that it is flat out a matchup defining tool. Many matchups where King Dedede can utilise the chain grab are considered to be in his favor (sometimes drastically so solely because of the chaingrab) whereas in matchups where he cannot chaingrab, he overall struggles a lot more, potentially heavily losing to higher tiered characters he cannot chain grab. Down throw combined with King Dedede's grabs is overall the main reason why King Dedede is considered a relevant character in the meta, despite all of his shortcomings as a character, as these tools alone allow him to gatekeep many mid and low tier characters.
When the opponent is thrown, the throw deals 5 frames of hitlag to the opponent (4 frames if down throw has been used more than 5 times in the staleness queue).
Chaingrab infinite data
|Is light enough to get knocked down by down throw||Is heavy enough to not get knocked down by down throw|
- Any character on the right side table can be infinited at a wall which permanently stays on the stage.
Can be infinited without a wall on flat ground
(In every case where stale-move negation can prevent the chain grab from working, a pummel can be used after each consecutive down throw to unstale the down throw enough to make the chain grab work again)
- Donkey Kong - Can be performed infinitely.
- Luigi - Can be performed five times before stale-move negation prevents the standing grab from connecting.
- Mario - Can be performed five times before stale-move negation prevents the standing grab from connecting.
- Samus - Can be performed five times before stale-move negation prevents the standing grab from connecting.
Can be infinited at the edge or on a slope
- Bowser - Can be performed five times near an edge before stale-move negation prevents the standing grab from connecting. Can be performed infinitely if used on a light slope, such as near the edge of Yoshi's Island.
- King Dedede - Can be performed infinitely near an edge.
- Wolf - Can be performed five times near an edge five times before stale-move negation prevents the standing grab from connecting. Can be performed infinitely if used on a light slope, such as near the edge of Yoshi's Island.
Can be infinited with a buffered pivot grab
- Bowser - Can be performed infinitely.
- Charizard - Can be performed five times before stale-move negation prevents the pivot grab from connecting.
- Donkey Kong - While this can be performed infinitely, it is made completely redundant by the fact that King Dedede can true infinite Donkey Kong using his standing grab, which is much easier to perform.
- Ivysaur - Can be performed five times before stale-move negation prevents the pivot grab from connecting.
- R.O.B. - Can be performed infinitely if used on a light slope, such as near the edge of Yoshi's Island.
- Samus - Can be performed infinitely. While a standing grab can chain into itself itself initially, it stops working when down throw becomes too stale. A buffered pivot grab works regardless of if down throw is stale or not.
- Snake - Can be performed five times before stale-move negation prevents the pivot grab from connecting.
- Wario - Can be performed infinitely if used on a light slope, such as near the edge of Yoshi's Island.
- Wolf - Can be performed infinitely.
- Interestingly, a buffered pivot grab cannot be used to chain grab Mario or Luigi, despite the fact that they can be infinited (to an extent) with a standing grab. This is because King Dedede's buffered pivot grab is one frame slower than his standing grab and Mario/Luigi travel far enough in that extra frame to fly out of range for a pivot grab despite its extra range.
Though the Smash Back Room did not specifically ban the standing infinite while Brawl was the most current game (and in its most active state), some tournaments banned the walking chain grab due to its sheer effectiveness combined with its ease of execution, although this was never a universally adopted rule. King Dedede's running chain grab however was always legal at every significant tournament.