SSBU Icon.png

King K. Rool (SSBU)

From SmashWiki, the Super Smash Bros. wiki
Jump to navigationJump to search
This article is about King K. Rool's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. For the character in other contexts, see King K. Rool.
King K. Rool
in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
King K. Rool SSBU.png
Symbol of the DK series.
Universe Donkey Kong
Availability Unlockable
Final Smash Blast-O-Matic
King K. Rool Comes Aboard!
—Introduction tagline

King K. Rool (キングクルール, King K. Rool) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was announced as a newcomer during the August 8th, 2018 Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Direct alongside Simon, Richter, Chrom, and Dark Samus. King K. Rool is classified as Fighter #67.

Rather than being voiced by Toshihide Tsuchiya, who voiced the character since the 2007 title Donkey Kong Barrel Blast and the 2008 title Mario Super Sluggers, both games for the Wii, King K. Rool has a set of realistic crocodile roars and bellows, similar to how Bowser, Donkey Kong, and Diddy Kong emit realistic animal sounds as opposed to having dedicated voice acting.

How to unlock[edit]

Complete one of the following:

  • Play VS. matches, with King K. Rool being the 16th character to be unlocked.
  • Clear Classic Mode with Link, being the 1st character in his unlock tree.
  • Have King K. Rool join the player's party in World of Light.

With the exception of the third method, King K. Rool must then be defeated on Jungle Japes.


King K. Rool is a character that ostensibly fits the mold of a super-heavyweight, being the second-heaviest character in the game behind Bowser and possessing a large array of powerful attacks with long range, but with below-average mobility; while his falling speed and gravity are noticeably above average, his traction and jumping force are average at best, and he also has the 20th slowest air speed, the 17th slowest walking speed, the 13th slowest dashing speed, and the 8th slowest air acceleration in the game. However, he has some characteristics that notably set him apart from his heavyweight peers; he has a wide variety of moves that serve multiple utilities, a great recovery, and other valuable techniques that aid his playstyle, focusing on punishing mistakes and zoning against horizontal approach.

King K. Rool's greatest strength is the immense utility of his moveset. Though many of his attacks are typical of super-heavyweights, he also has attacks that lack brute strength (though most of them are still powerful) in exchange for unique attributes that contribute to his punish-focused playstyle. This is best shown through his character-specific perk, Belly Super Armor: attacks with this property gain short periods of this super armor, which can block incoming attacks during their duration. This mechanic gives him an advantage that allows him to win more exchanges than he would normally. Additionally, it affects a large amount of his moves, granting more safety on moves such as his forward tilt and dash attack to break through projectiles or difficult to punish attacks. As a result, Belly Super Armor heavily helps his approach and defense.

Alongside the utility of his Belly Super Armor, King K. Rool has effective tools for ground offense. His neutral attack has good range and speed, making it reliable as a quick spacing option. It is also the most damaging non-rapid jab in the game, and leads into a tech situation at low to mid percentages. This is especially useful out of a foxtrot, which is faster than his normal dash speed, making him about as fast as Inkling. His tilts are very effective; for example, up tilt comes out very quickly, has decent knockback especially at the beginning, and has enough range to hit platforms above K. Rool. This can also be used to anti-air or prevent approaches from characters such as Lucina and Marth. It is also the most reliable move out of down throw, becoming a true combo from around 120% and scoring a KO on most characters. Down tilt can bury grounded opponents or KO airborne ones, making it a potent punishment option. It also works at the ledge as a ledgehang punish or 2-frame option, and has a large shockwave hitbox that notably extends its range. His earlier mentioned forward tilt grants him Belly Super Armor as early as frame 5, has excellent range, can be angled up or down (with latter capable of being used as a ledgehang punish or 2-frame option), and is a very strong kill move. Finally, his dash attack is also equipped with Belly Super Armor, has fast startup, a long-lasting, large hitbox and is very powerful, being a very potent, powerful burst option that can go through variety of attacks.

All of his smash attacks are incredibly powerful, and coupled with their unique traits and the belly armor on his up and down smashes, allow for very effective punishment. Forward smash deals heavy knockback regardless of where it hits, especially if angled upwards. It also confirms out of a down tilt bury at 70%, usually killing the opponent. Up smash functions as a quick anti-air, and it also has a small meteor smash hitbox in addition to a third hitbox that punishes grounded foes. However, only the first is really useful as the other two are weak. Down smash deals massive shield damage and lifts K. Rool's entire body off the stage from frame 4, allowing it to dodge most ground-hugging moves and makes it his best hard punish option. Overall, his smash attacks are all formidable for hard punishes.

His aerials are also fairly unique in their utility. Neutral aerial grants the longest duration of belly armor in K. Rool's moveset, making it a reliable combo-breaker or landing tool to prevent juggling. Neutral aerial also has very low landing lag, allowing it to combo into moves such as neutral attack, up tilt, or at higher percentages, dash grab and dash attack, the latter in particular being a KO confirm at certain percentages. The move's long-lasting, lingering hitbox and Belly Super Armor makes it a very effective edgeguarding tool, as it can go through a variety of recovery moves and gimp the opponent that way. His forward aerial is arguably his best move overall, being a cornerstone for his neutral game. It has amazing range, hits exceptionally hard, and because of its low landing lag, it is safe on shield and is his best combo starter at low percentages. This gives the move a ton of utility as a neutral spacing tool, kill move, combo starter, decent air-to-air option against some characters, as a decent although situational edgeguard option, for catching jumps and even as an occasional punish out of his burying moves. Forward aerial also deals non-tumble hitstun at 0%, confirming a grab. Up aerial is a very unorthodox move with a surprisingly high amount of utility - it has good start-up, a very long-lasting hitbox, and excellent kill power, while also working as a good platform movement out of a short hop. This is most effective when platforms are low, such as on Battlefield; it can also be used as a situational third jump while recovering, stalling K. Rool in the air while allowing it to potentially cancel out projectiles thrown at him. Because of the Belly Super Armor, long-lasting hitbox and the fact that K. Rool does not perform the slight jump while in hitstun, it can be used as a situational combo breaker. Down aerial and back aerial are meteor smashes, with the former coming out relatively fast; and while the latter is very slow, it is also one of the strongest meteor smashes in the game. King K. Rool's back aerial also creates a wall of hitboxes behind him as a sourspot covers his entire arm. His up and down aerials utilize belly armor, but their utility is situational due to their hitboxes being separated from K. Rool's belly. His neutral, forward, and back aerials are also safe on shield, which is unusual for a super-heavyweight character. All in all, all of his aerials offer strong utility.

His special moves have a wide array of uses as well, with several efficient projectiles; the Blunderbuss is useful for edgeguarding purposes (such as forcing a situation where the opponent has to recover low, allowing for a down aerial) and throws out a Kannonball that can be sucked back in and aimed in a few directions. The Blunderbuss can also act as a command grab, sucking in opponents and shooting them out in different directions, with the forward reshoot in particular sporting very high knockback. The suction of the Blunderbuss is an effective ledge-trapping tool, especially on stages with platforms. Since K. Rool can drop through platforms while still being able to move slightly, he can limit the opponent's options to get out of the ledge. The vacuum animation can also be delayed and is very quick to come out if a Kannonball is in play, allowing K. Rool to easily mix up the timings. Crownerang is a very versatile tool that covers a large distance and grants him damage-based armor throughout the majority of its duration, and the late hit can set up combos or even straight up confirm kills into numerous moves. It has high priority that beats out most projectiles, and the armor allows K. Rool to tank numerous of attacks, making the move very threatening in some matchups. The pick-up animation also has some ways to be canceled, which can be adapted into the player's gameplan.

Furthermore, King K. Rool has immense survivability: between his extremely high weight, above-average falling speed, his Belly Super Armor on various moves and his heavy armor on Crownerang, King K. Rool has some of, if not the best longevity in the game; it is not uncommon for him to sustain more than 200% damage. Additionally, his up special move, Propellerpack, goes a remarkable distance for a heavyweight and is infamously hard to intercept vertically due to its respectable disjointed hitbox. This can be used to poke opponents on the ledge, then jump up with a forward or up aerial to regain advantage. It can also situationally be used to catch opponents near the ceiling to steal a stock, most notably on high recovery routes.

K. Rool also has a very strong grab game, one of the best in the entire game in fact: his grabs have very long range and all have 3 active frames, and all of his throws are also very strong, heavily damaging and all of them have their utility. His up throw has him performing a jump and land over the highest platform over him. It is the most damaging throw in the entire game, dealing almost 20% if the 1v1 multiplier is enabled, making it a very effective damage racking tool. It also leaves the opponent in a juggling situation. While it also can KO at high percentages, it has overall mediocre KO potential, though with help of platforms it can KO much earlier. His back throw is a very strong throw with great KO potential near the ledge, which becomes even more potent with rage. It also sends the opponent in a very low angle, setting up for potentially deadly edgeguards even when it fails to KO. At higher percentages, his notorious down throw can lead into various mixups with tilts, up smash or aerials depending on mash speed. Most notably, he can create a 50/50 situation at around 80-100% with the throw - up smash covers mashing, allowing him to hit the opponent before they mash out and net a KO, or if they decide not to mash, forward smash will KO them. In addition to this, dash attack or up tilt are reliable options at higher percentages, allowing K. Rool to straight up KO with the throw starting from 120-140%. Forward throw does decent damage, can help put an opponent offstage and in a disadvantageous position, and lead into a dash attack for a true combo until around 20%. Once this is out of range, it is great for setting up edgeguards. With all of this, K. Rool is always able to do a lot of damage if he lands a grab, and is able to KO with his throws earlier than practically any character in the game to the point where he gets a huge chunk of his KOs with his grabs. All of this is made even more effective with his excellent grab range; combined with his effective initial dash, this can allow for a string of grabs that strongly deters shielding.

King K. Rool has access to a large amount of advanced techniques. These techniques assist with movement, mixups, and even enable combos. As a result, he is a rather technical fighter that can be rewarding to a player looking for a simple character with a high learning curve. They are all somewhat practical and reward creative use, allowing players to build interesting playstyles of their own. This makes him easily accessed at a low level, while still being usable on a higher level of play. As long as the player is aware of the options that the design of these techs provide, King K. Rool will reward them for it.

However, King K. Rool's numerous advantages are also met with several glaring and exploitable weaknesses. His below-average mobility spells trouble for him in certain matchups, and can make him easier to zone. Blunderbuss Kannonballs are slow to set up, and while they can occupy space well, fast characters can ignore it if they are already remotely close. Crownerang is also slow and can backfire very hard when missed, since the crown is a fairly powerful item that opponents can use to rack up damage very quickly. Gut Check is generally inferior to other counterattacks due to having a hitbox only on his stomach, while having significantly higher endlag than most reflectors (around 30 frames if it fails), making it unreliable. This endlag makes it almost meaningless against some projectiles, such as Mega Man's neutral attack.

K. Rool’s extreme weight, very large hurtbox, and above average falling speed make him extremely vulnerable to combos, and while his Belly Super Armor can help alleviate this, it's not completely foolproof: if K. Rool takes 36.02% of total damage to his armor over a short period of time, he will suffer a pseudo-shield break and be rendered immobile until his belly armor recovers. It also recovers at just .3% per second, making abuse quite difficult. Its limited HP punishes abuse of this mechanic if used frequently. Although it's hard to break in most matchups, it's certainly possible especially against other heavyweights with strong attacks, such as Bowser and Ganondorf. However, its effectiveness varies depending on whether clashing against his attacks is actually worthwhile. Unlike Bowser's Tough Guy Armor, the HP system of Belly Armor makes it quite exploitable, since the advantage of ignoring quick attacks with no knockback offers better usage for up-and-personal brawlers like Bowser. As the second heaviest fighter in the game, K. Rool's Belly Amor can occasionally act as a liability for survival, forcing him to rely more on non-armored moves when it's about to break. Additionally, due to their brief duration, his belly armor attacks are more reliable on quick, single-hit moves than long, multi-hitting attacks.

While K. Rool's ground game is good and his grab and throw game are top notch, they too suffer from his balanced kit. None of his throws other than back throw have strong enough kill power to actually be reliable in a matchup, although they do fit other purposes. Additionally, his air game can overall be seen as mediocre. Although his aerials are generally very potent moves and have interesting attributes, including two meteor smashes and armor on some of them, all of these moves (apart from his neutral aerial) suffer from one fatal flaw—very high ending lag in the air—making many of them somewhat situational, and forcing K. Rool to land with the moves to minimize the ending lag in the air. His down aerial's meteor smash hitbox only lasts for two frames and the move itself has high ending lag, making the potential punishes off of it very situational. His up aerial has extreme ending lag (the highest of any aerial in the game), preventing King K. Rool from acting even after a jump (though platforms can alleviate this), making it somewhat risky to use high up in the air. While his back aerial is very strong and has a lingering hitbox, it has very high start-up lag, which makes it easy to stuff out especially with its lack of armor or intangibility, and it additionally has a very weak sourspot, making it somewhat inconsistent. Additionally, none of King K. Rool's aerials autocancel in a short hop. His forward and back aerials require a full hop double jump to autocancel, while up aerial does not autocancel without being very high up. The high ending lag of his aerials makes fast-falling them offstage extremely risky, as it is possible to self-destruct before even getting a chance to recover, which depletes edgeguarding options. Due to the high overall lag of his aerials, K. Rool is unable to juggle for extended periods of time, and his aerial game is mostly constrained to a reactive playstyle. K. Rool's slow aerial mobility further hampers his aerial capacity, and his massive hurtbox makes him a very easy target if in the air, giving him a limited air game, making his playstyle generally more grounded.

Though a lot of his moves have decent start-up, especially for a super-heavyweight, an equal amount of them suffer from very high ending lag, which means that King K. Rool gets easily punished if he fails to connect his attacks. Despite the wide array of tools he has at his disposal, he lacks many moves that can simply be thrown out quickly, as many of his attacks are punishable or force him to use up his belly armor. This ironically makes his approach ineffective despite the sheer amount of different, fast attacks he has; few of his attacks can maintain pressure without being exploited, and the lag can make moves like forward tilt a neutral reset at best. King K. Rool is also vulnerable to being pressured and rushed down due to a poor out-of-shield game; his up smash is hard to use out of shield in most matchups, as the headbutt (which comes out on frame 6) only hits directly above him, while then later plank hitboxes are weak and slow to come out. His neutral aerial, his fastest reliable out-of-shield option, has poor range, especially behind him. As a result, K. Rool is particularly vulnerable to characters that can crossup his shield easily, since he effectively has no option to punish this kind of approach and has to resort to retreating or jumping away. Finally, even his amazing grab game has some flaws—his forward throw is unable to KO at realistic percentages, his up throw requires platforms to KO effectively and is too laggy to have true followups, his back throw loses a lot of its kill power if used center-stage due to its low knockback growth, and while his down throw gives him extensive mixups and even KO confirms, it requires reads to be effective. It is also affected by the bounce glitch, which adds even more inconsistency to the move.

Crownerang, while a very strong move on its own, is flawed in many ways. If an opponent picks up the crown after it has been thrown, it leaves him without one of his best tools. The crown can actually be used to edgeguard against Propellerpack, or it can be thrown up to keep it from respawning. It's also very possible for opponents to combo with the crown, or pick it up again after throwing it, with very little counterplay available. The player must adopt an entirely different playstyle while the crown is on the field, or else risk losing a stock. As the pick-up animation takes 17 frames to complete, this also means that it can interrupt crucial combos, leading to the opponent getting away and resetting to neutral. While this is alleviated slightly through tech, it doesn't help a lot.

King K. Rool's recovery, while effective in theory, is very exploitable by many characters. Propellerpack is very linear, and a knowledgeable player can edgeguard him for long periods of time. It is immensely slow, and moving around with it reduces the vertical speed and leaves strong momentum, which can lead to a self-destruct if not accounted for. The hitbox doesn't entirely cover him horizontally, and as he cannot cancel the animation, he has to commit to it. He is usually forced to recover low, which is extremely dangerous due to how many characters have their own unique ways to beat him here. Characters such as Piranha Plant and Villager have moves (Ptooie and forward smash respectively in this case) that can also counteract the vertical hitbox. It also leaves him very vulnerable to stage spikes, though LSI greatly alleviates this and allows him to tech to unreasonable percentages. The move can be angled to try and prevent this, though K. Rool usually will not recover without taking a large amount of damage. K. Rool also has very few ledge options; his only unique one is forward aerial, which requires frame-perfect precision to ledgesnap. Other than this, his ledge options are very limited—even Crownerang is too laggy to be used from the ledge reliably—and thus many characters can keep him there for a long time before finally killing him.

All in all, King K. Rool has a somewhat hard time compensating his heavy drawbacks, even though his strengths are also very potent. King K. Rool is an extremely resilient character that excels at keeping opponents out while punishing mistakes extremely hard. He enjoys playing a unique bait-and-switch playstyle, being a zoner that can switch to aggression whenever there is an opening and net a substantial punish. His damage output cannot be understated, with him often either getting a stock or leaving an opponent at kill percent. This ability to force reactions from his foe makes him unlike any other character in the cast, and creativity rewards the player with a decently versatile character. However, just like how he capitalizes heavily on mistakes and confusion, his own openings can be heavily punished as well, requiring him to play patiently. To use the full potential of his moveset, the player needs to balance their gameplay between zoning and up and personal aggression. For while K. Rool does have the advantage of switching between safe distancing via Crownerang and the Blunderbuss or pressuring lighter characters with his strong melee attacks, he does not perform well enough to use one strategy alone.

Historically, K. Rool's competitive reception has generally been very negative, though it has been somewhat fluctuated over time. Early on considered to be a potential high/top-tier character and "broken" especially by casual players, it did not take too long for many top professionals to consider King K. Rool as one of the worst characters in the game due to his severe, heavily exploitable downsides. In Japan, his reputation was even worse, with many top professional players there universally ranking him as the single worst character in the game. This reflected in his tournament results, as they are very limited in North America and Japan (in latter, practically completely nonexistent outside of online tournaments), especially on the national level. However, thanks to dedicated players like Ben Gold and Raphy, K. Rool's results in Australia and Europe respectively are significantly better. Ben Gold in particular managed to win Battle Arena Melbourne 11, the biggest Ultimate major so far in Australia. Although his competitive viability still remains questionable and many players still view him as a low or even bottom-tier character, the changes he received in the patches, especially the most recent ones in 8.0.0, have made a lot of top professional players question whether K. Rool really is as bad as previously thought. Some of them even believe that he might be a mid-tier character instead of a low or bottom tier character as previously thought. However, how much these buffs have actually affected his viability remains to be seen.

Update history[edit]

Aside from glitch fixes, King K. Rool has received a mix of buffs and nerfs via game updates, but has been buffed significantly overall. Update 2.0.0 shortened Blunderbuss' vacuum duration, and decreased the horizontal range of Propellerpack's hitbox, the latter of which would previously hit opponents on the edge with relative consistency. The most notable change, however, was to down throw: its bury duration's scaling was changed to be less effective at low percents, but more effective at high percents. While the former two are direct nerfs, they do not significantly impact his playstyle. While originally considered to be a significant nerf, King K. Rool proved to benefit from the change to his down throw, as it made some KO confirms reliable or even guaranteed, such as up tilt at around 130%.

Update 3.0.0 nerfed Crownerang's shield damage output as part of a near-universal nerf, yet also buffed King K. Rool in a few noticeable ways. Forward aerial's sweetspot gained more hitbox priority, thus improving its reliability. Forward tilt gained sweetspots on his gauntlets; in addition to improving its range, this also allows it to hit buried opponents it previously could not, such as Diddy Kong. Up aerial's noticeable ending lag reduction made it a more effective recovery option, as the horizontal drift enables K. Rool to recover without using up his double jump. Previously, using it off-stage would often cause K. Rool to self-destruct.

After remaining unchanged for some time, update 6.0.0 gave King K. Rool more noteworthy buffs. Neutral aerial's landing lag was decreased noticeably, forward aerial's clean hit was strengthened and enlarged, and up aerial received a much longer hitbox duration and a stronger clean hit. Two of his specials were improved as well: Blunderbuss had its start-up reduced, its Kannonballs were strengthened overall, and it reshoots vacuumed Kannonballs faster, while Gut Check received a larger searchbox and less ending lag upon a successful counterattack.

These changes greatly improved King K. Rool's neutral game and punishes compared to previous updates. Neutral aerial notably became significantly better as an approach option, as its low landing lag made it a non-committal way to take hits from laggy attacks, enabling punishes other characters normally would not be able to do, in part due to the 9 frames of landing lag allowing a guaranteed dash buffer.

In update 8.0.0, King K. Rool was buffed significantly yet again. He most notably received a buff to the durability of his Belly Super Armor, as his breastplate is now being able to withstand Ganondorf's forward smash at full health. Crownerang now allows King K. Rool to withstand several attacks thanks to its armor's much higher damage threshold, which significantly improves its utility in numerous game states. Most notably, it can get him out of edge trap situations through using his double jump from the edge, or save him from juggle or edge-guard situations.

Aside from these buffs, a few of King K. Rool's strongest moves were strengthened even further. Up smash's damage output was increased at the cost of very minimal knockback compensation. Dash attack gained a longer-lasting early hitbox and deals more knockback, improving both its follow-up potential out of forward throw at low percents and its KO potential at high percents. Despite not receiving any damage or knockback increases, back throw also KOs much earlier, thanks to it now launching at 35°.

Overall, King K. Rool's buffs have granted him stronger and more consistent KO options, a better neutral game, and a much-improved disadvantage state. As a result, his perception among competitive players has improved to the point that even a number of top professionals have acknowledged his considerable turnaround since the launch of Ultimate.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 2.0.0

A graph demonstrating the differences in the burial duration's scaling between King K. Rool's down throw pre-update (blue) and post-update (red).
  • Change Down throw has a different bury scaling formula (90 frames + 0.5*damage → 60 + 0.75*damage). This allows buried opponents to easily escape at low percents, but more difficult at high percents. Specifically, it is worse below 125%, and better above 125%.
    • Buff These changes improve K. Rool's mixup options at low percents, while making his KO confirms more varied and consistent at high percents.
    • Buff With these changes, down throw now has 50/50 setup options, which can catch opponents with up smash or up aerial if they mash out of the bury at ~90%, or setup into forward smash if they are conditioned to wait out the bury.
    • Buff Down throw's changes make up tilt a consistent KO option out of down throw on middleweight characters from around 125%; previously, opponents could mash out even at 130%.
    • Nerf Down throw's changes make dash attack significantly less effective compared to up tilt at 125%.
    • Nerf Down throw's followup into forward tilt now has to be angled up from 110% onwards to hit most of the cast as opposed to 100%.
    • Nerf The infinite jab combo (down throw to jab, repeat) that worked at 200%+ has been removed, now having the opponent "bounce" on the third loop.
  • Blunderbuss:
    • Nerf Blunderbuss has a shorter windbox duration, being shortened to 2.5 seconds.
    • Bug fix Blunderbuss no longer turns opponents invisible when KOing at their last stock.
  • Nerf Propellerpack's horizontal hitbox is smaller, making it difficult to KO opponents straight to the upper blast zone and making it less safe when recovering. Most notably, it doesn't snap to the ledge as often as it used to.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.0.0

  • Buff Forward tilt's sweetspot has more range.
  • Buff Forward aerial's sweetspot has more range.
  • Buff Up aerial has less ending lag (FAF 82 → 72).
  • Change Up throw is no longer affected by wind zones for the duration of the move.
  • Crownerang:
    • Nerf Crownerang deals less shield damage.
    • Bug fix Fixed crown duplication with Villager or Isabelle's Pocket.
    • Bug fix No longer increases the size of the crown while in an egg form from Yoshi's Egg Lay.
  • Buff Gut Check has less ending lag (Fail/Succeed: FAF 68/48 → 63/43).
  • Bug fix The desync glitch involving King Dedede has been fixed.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.1.0

  • Buff Up aerial grabs the ledge more quickly when using the move (ledge lockout: 102 → 96). As an example of the change, full hop double jump up aerial will now cancel on the ledge during the endlag.
  • Bug fix Fixed an issue with Blunderbuss upon reflect of kannonball resulted King K Rool's windbox becoming stuck.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 6.0.0

Blunderbuss' updated vacuum searchbox for Kannonballs in update 6.0.0. Once the vacuum is completely stretched out, it remains as such until Blunderbuss is put away.
  • Buff Neutral aerial has less landing lag (13 frames → 9).
  • Forward aerial:
    • Buff Forward aerial's clean and mid hits deal more damage (14%/12% → 15.5%/13.5%) with knockback not fully compensated (40 base/78 scaling (clean), 35/80 (mid) → 36/76), improving their KO potential.
    • Buff The clean and mid hits' sweetspot is larger (5.5u → 6.5u) and placed higher (Y offset: 7.5u → 8.5u (clean), 10.5u → 11.5u (mid)), increasing its range.
    • Buff The mid hit lasts longer (frames 11 (clean)/12-13 (mid)/14-17 (late) → 11/12-14/15-17).
  • Buff Up aerial has a longer hitbox duration (frames 7-8 (clean)/9-16 (late) → 7-13/14-19), and the clean hit deals more knockback (85 base/56 scaling → 84/60), KOing at around 135% from ground level.
  • Blunderbuss:
    • Buff Blunderbuss has less startup (frame 30 → 25), with its total duration reduced as well (FAF 70 → 65).
    • Buff The Kannonball is easier to vacuum, and has less base knockback (30 → 18), but much more knockback scaling (70 → 92), improving its KO potential overall.
    • Buff Both the Kannonball and opponents are shot faster after being vacuumed. This makes it much easier for King K. Rool to recover offstage after using the move without self-destructing, increasing its utility as an edgeguarding tool.
  • Gut Check:
    • Buff The counter detection hitbox has more range (size: 6u → 7.8u, Y offset: 8.6u → 7.4u, Z offset: 6u → 4.4u), now covering some area below his belly.
    • Buff A successful Gut Check has less ending lag (Normal/Reversed: FAF 42/53 → 38/45).
    • Buff The counter hitbox and the counterattack's sweetspot have more range (size: 10u → 12u, Y offset: 11u → 12.5u, Z offset: 9u → 10.5u).

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 7.0.0

  • Buff Overall shield size has been increased by 1.011×.
    • Buff The shield's center and K. Rool's posture while shielding has been adjusted to match.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 8.0.0

  • Buff Belly Super Armor has more durability (14.01 HP → 18.01 HP), allowing it to withstand stronger attacks such as Falcon Punch from full durability, and improving its overall reliability. Considering the armor splitting damage between itself and King K. Rool, it's got effectively 36.02 HP.
  • Dash attack:
    • Buff The move has more knockback scaling (57 → 61 (clean), 48 → 55 (late)).
    • Buff The clean hit has a longer duration, with the late hit's duration reduced accordingly (frames 7-11 (clean)/12-25 (late) → 7-14/15-25).
  • Buff Up smash's first hit deals more damage (15% → 17%) without full compensation on knockback (32 base/95 scaling → 31/90), improving its KO potential.
  • Buff Pummel has a larger hitbox (7u → 8u), allowing it to connect more consistently.
  • Buff Back throw launches at a lower angle (45° → 35°), allowing it to KO around 20% earlier.
  • Buff Crownerang has an increased armor threshold (6% → 12%).

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 9.0.1

  • Bug fix Fixed an issue in which K. Rool could fall though the stage when breaking Steve's blocks.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 12.0.0

  • Bug fix Fixed an issue where King K. Rool could float over Steve's blocks using the final hit of Up Smash or the final hit of his jab.
  • Bug fix Fixed an issue where King K. Rool could bypass the collision of Steve's blocks up close with the final hit of his jab.


  • K. Rool has a large and tall hurtbox while standing, walking, and jumping. However, he dashes on all four limbs, akin to real-life alligators and crocodiles, which makes his hurtbox significantly shorter.
  • Certain belly-based moves in King K. Rool's moveset (forward tilt, dash attack, up smash, down smash, neutral aerial, up aerial, down aerial, and side taunt) activate health-based super armor around his belly, known as Belly Super Armor. Each of the listed moves have this out for varying frames. However, taking damage with these moves cracks it, with K. Rool getting dazed upon it breaking completely after sustaining too much damage. The armor has 18.01 HP, but since the incoming damage is split 50/50 between K. Rool and his belly, it is practically 36.02 HP. It regenerates at 0.08 HP every 16 frames (about 0.3 HP per second). Attacks that hit K. Rool's belly super armor make a loud, distinct clanging sound as an audio cue, with a fixed 16 frames of hitlag. It is also possible to estimate the damage it has taken, with small cracks appearing at 11.5 HP (where 23% would break it) and large cracks appearing at 5.02 HP (where 10.04% would break it).

For a gallery of King K. Rool's hitboxes, see here.

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

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack Palm Stamp (パームスタンプ) / Snatch Claw (スナッチクロー) / Sole Kick (ソールキック) 2.5% A three hit combo consisting of a palm thrust (comes out on frame 4), a claw swipe (frame 3), and a front kick (frame 5). The first hit can be repeated by holding the attack button, and can also jab reset on big body characters specifically, allowing for some interesting situations. The second hit resembles King K. Rool's standard attack from Donkey Kong Barrel Blast.
Forward tilt Buster Clap (バスタークラップ) 11% (arms), 13% (palms) Rears back and performs a forceful clap, similar to his arch-nemesis Donkey Kong's forward smash. Gains Belly Super Armor when he rears back to clap, making it a highly effective approach option with pivot canceling. Sends at a semi-spike angle and is decently fast for its power (comes out on frame 12), KOing at 107% at the edge of Final Destination. It can be angled up and down, making it a decent anti-air tool when angled up, and it is capable of hitting the ledge when angled down. This move has impressive range due to a massive, disjointed hitbox surrounding K. Rool's hands. It does suffer from moderately high ending lag, though this flaw can be partially mitigated when spaced correctly. The combination of its range, Belly Super Armor, KO potential and ability to angle it up or down makes it not only one of the best moves in King K. Rool's kit, but also arguably one of the best forward tilts in the game.
Up tilt Uppercut (アッパーカット) 11.5% (clean), 6.8% (late, arm), 8.2% (late, fist) An uppercut. Has a wide hitbox, covering the front of K. Rool, and starts low enough to reach prone enemies. Almost as fast as his neutral attack, coming out on frame 5, which is very fast for a move with reasonably decent KO power. Loses power the longer it is out, with the sweetspot dealing rather strong diagonal knockback, and the sourspot dealing weak, mostly vertical knockback, which can potentially lead to another up tilt or up air. This move works well out of down throw due to its combination of speed and power.
Down tilt Bury Leg (バリーレッグ) 13% (clean), 10% (late, non-burying), 8% (late, burying), 7% (late, quake) A delayed sumo-esque stomp. K. Rool's foot buries grounded opponents, though it cannot do damage to an already-buried enemy. Much stronger on aerial opponents, and can KO at 104% at the edge of Final Destination. The stomp causes a shockwave near his foot. This deals weak vertical knockback to nearby opponents and allowing for moves like forward aerial to be used out of it. Starts with the non-bury hitbox on frame 13, before the bury comes out at frame 14. Forward smash is true out of this from around 70%, and frequently KOs at that percent range. The hitboxes can hit some opponents under low platforms (such as the left and right platforms on Battlefield). Due to how buries work in Ultimate, it is possible to "store" knockback on a buried opponent using a weak attack, forcing them to get unburied over time and sent at the angle of the weak attack; this can create long combo strings at low percents.
Dash attack Body Attack (ボディアタック) 15% (clean), 11% (late) A body avalanche, similar to an attack he used in Donkey Kong Land. It covers a good distance and has incredibly fast start-up for its power (comes out on frame 7), but has very high ending lag. It also deals much less damage later into the attack. Has Belly Super Armor and can KO, allowing it to tank opposing hits (especially projectiles) as a risky approach. KOs at 102% at the edge of Final Destination, making it a very good move to use out of down throw through Instant Dash Attack, as it KOs larger characters earlier than forward tilt.
Forward smash Dynamite Punch (ダイナマイトパンチ) 19.9% (sweetspot), 17.3% (close) Dons a boxing glove, referencing his "King Krusha K. Rool" persona from Donkey Kong 64, and throws a straight punch. This move has a sweetspot on the glove and a sourspot on K. Rool's arm. It can also be angled and deals more damage if angled up or down, which gives it some versatility, depending on the angle. Although the move is slightly faster than forward smashes of other super heavyweights, it still comes out slow with a short-lasting hitbox (frame 19-20), and it suffers from extremely high ending lag even for its type, making it very punishable when missed. However, the move is very powerful, with the sweetspot KOing at 53% at the edge of Final Destination. The sourspot on his arm deals less knockback and damage, but is still moderately powerful. The boxing glove is also disjointed, which can be used to hard punish short hop approaches in niche circumstance. It's also very effective out of down tilt, as the move is fast enough to connect and KO at around 50-70% before the opponent mashes out.
19% (sweetspot), 16.5% (close)
19.5% (sweetspot), 16.9% (close)
Up smash Heavy Fall (ヘビーフォール) 17% (headbutt), 8% (late headbutt), 10% (plank); 3% (meteor smash) An upward battering ram followed by a comical plank. The headbutt has a small hitbox, but has fast start-up (frame 6) and can KO from medium to high percents. It also has a slightly later hitbox on frame 10 that deals slightly less damage, making it somewhat inconsistent at times. The initial headbutt can be used to hit opponents on platforms above him, or as a risky anti-air move. It is King K. Rool's fastest out of shield option, though it is too situational and risky to be very effective for this purpose. It is also highly effective out of down throw, as it is able to hit opponents who mash out, being an effective KO confirm at around 90-110%. The plank comes out later and has a big hitbox, but deals less damage and knockback, making it more suited for covering the headbutt or ledgetrapping at best. The plank animation weakly meteor smashes opponents, though this is ineffective for edgeguarding due to its low knockback. In addition, it is the weakest meteor smash in the game, failing to KO at realistic percents. It can be used to force tech situations or awkward placements off-stage, but these are highly situational and impractical. The sheer number of hits do make it useful for causing shield damage under platforms. Each hitbox is situated on K. Rool's head and body respectively, meaning it can miss entirely if used poorly. Additionally, the move has extremely high ending lag, with the first actionable frame being 72 and the last hit being on frame 23. The headbutt KO's at 100%, while the plank KO's at 162% at the edge of Final Destination, respectively. This move has Belly Super Armor shortly after K. Rool hops and before he flops onto the ground. There are intangibility frames on K. Rool's head when the sweetspot comes out.
Down smash Gigant Press (ギガントプレス) 18% (body), 4% (quake) A jumping splash, which causes a quake. Has Belly Super Armor during the leap, and deals heavy shield damage. As K. Rool physically leaves the ground when using the move, his hurtbox gets shifted into the air, allowing it to dodge ground or belly-level attacks to deal a hard punish. It is extremely powerful, being one of the strongest down smashes in the game, KOing at 50% at the edge of Final Destination. The move is very laggy overall, with its strongest hitbox coming out on frame 22, and it also suffers from very high ending lag, which makes it very punishable if used poorly. However, thanks to its initial hop and armor, the move is surprisingly hard to intercept despite its high startup. It also can be used on platforms against opponents that try to attack K. Rool from below. The quake is extremely weak, but it covers the high ending lag of the move somewhat, and it can occasionally lead to a forward tilt.
Neutral aerial Iron Balloon (アイアンバルーン) 12% (clean), 8% (late) A splash, similar to an attack he used in Donkey Kong Land. Decently fast (comes out on frame 7), acts as a sex kick and has Belly Super Armor. In addition, it has very little lag in comparison to most of King K. Rool's moveset, and is his safest move on shield. Finally, it is also his fastest out of shield option that is somewhat practical, next to his neutral attack. Because of all of this, it is one of the safest and most versatile moves to use in K. Rool's kit. It can be used for landing, contesting aerials, approaching, and even gimping, as it beats out most recovery moves, even ones with hitboxes. In addition, due to its safety it can be used to pressure, and it can also combo into several moves, such as his neutral attack, up tilt, forward tilt, dash attack, grab, and even situationally into down tilt, which can lead to devastating early KOs.
Forward aerial Drop Kick (ドロップキック) 15.5% (clean feet), 13.5% (clean legs), 10% (late feet), 8% (late legs) A dropkick, similar to Bowser's back aerial. Hitbox comes out on frame 11. Its sweetspot is at K. Rool's feet, which has a higher priority over the sourspot, making it easy to land. Has a very large hitbox with sweetspot being notably disjointed, giving it a very good range. The sweetspot has strong knockback, KOing around 100% near the edge of Final Destination. It deals disproportionately high damage, making it an very efficient damage racking tool. The move also acts as a sex kick, allowing it to be used for approaching or as a situational edgeguarding option. However, the move has relatively low landing lag, considering its power, huge, lingering hitbox, and relatively decent startup of 11 frames. This low landing lag combined with its power and range makes it K. Rool's safest move in neutral when the move is being used while landing, being safe on shield, especially when spaced correctly. Its properties make it K. Rool's best combo starter at low percents, with sweetspot being able to lead into neutral attack, forward tilt, up tilt, dash attack and grab at low percents. It can even confirm down tilt thanks to it being +15 on hit with good landing at 0%. The sourspot on this move lies around the torso, and can be used well with down tilt. It has a late hitbox with drastically weaker damage and knockback, which has some niche combo utility at mid percents, being able to lead into grabs thanks to it not sending into tumble until around 65%. However, it is very hard to land consistently. Overall, the move is considered to be among the best and most versatile moves in K. Rool's moveset.
Back aerial Rock Breaker (ロックブレイカー) 14.5% (arm), 19% (fist) Turns around and throws a delayed overhand punch behind himself, similar to Mario's forward aerial. It is very slow (comes out on frame 18), but it powerfully meteor smashes opponents if K. Rool's fist hits. Against grounded opponents, it launches them diagonally with extremely high knockback, being able to KO middleweights at 65% near the ledge, making it one of the strongest aerial attacks in the entire game. The larger, disjointed sourspot around the fist is significantly weaker, dealing rather weak diagonal knockback against both grounded and airborne opponents, failing to KO reliably until 160%. It also has a slightly lingering hitbox, making it an important tool in neutral when full hopped.
Up aerial Stretch Headbutt (ストレッチヘッドバット) 14%, 10% (late) An upward battering ram. Causes K. Rool to float slightly, giving it more reach. It has extremely high ending lag, preventing K. Rool from acting even if performed out of a double jump, making it risky to use offstage and making it the laggiest aerial in the game. However, is one of K. Rool's fastest aerial attacks (comes out on frame 7), and deals less damage if hit later. In addition to this, the early hitbox is among the strongest up aerials in the game, being able to KO at around 100% and even earlier if used near the upper blast zone, giving K. Rool a possibility to pick up very early KOs with the move, especially with rage. The early hit has a large, disjointed hitbox much larger than K. Rool's head, which also lingers for a disproportionately long time. The move has Belly Super Armor while K. Rool stretches his head out, ending after the hitboxes are over. When short hopped, this move can allow K. Rool to move onto a platform, allowing for some movement options, and significantly helps with the issue of the move having high endlag. Like up smash, there are intangibility frames on K. Rool's head during the attack, making it disjointed and allowing it to beat projectiles or some other even reasonably disjointed moves, such as Mr. Game & Watch's down aerial. This move can also be used for recovering from high to mid levels, as K. Rool can be moved from side to side while using the move.
Down aerial Meteor Stamp (メテオスタンプ) 12% (early), 9% (late) Does a quick flip before performing a double foot stomp in a Superman pose. The hitbox is situated on K. Rool's legs. Decently fast (comes out on frame 14) and meteor smashes if the early hitbox connects, although the meteor smash itself is rather weak. If the opponent is hit by the early hitbox - but not meteor smashed - on-stage by this move, it confirms a wide variety of attacks. There is also a late hitbox with a sweetspot on the hip, with 20 extra stats in knockback growth, plus a sourspot on the feet. It also has Belly Super Armor after K. Rool stretches his feet out, giving it some safety.
Grab Grab (つかみ) Reaches out quickly with great range. However, his dash and pivot grabs are slower than his standing grab. If K. Rool misses, his left eye comically bulges in frustration.
Pummel Grab Headbutt (つかみヘッドバット) 1.6% Headbutts the opponent.
Forward throw Ground Throw (グラウンドスルー) 10% (throw), 7% (collateral) Lifts the opponent over his head before slamming them into the ground, sending the opponent flying forwards. The slam possesses a collateral hitbox that can affect nearby opponents. Decent knockback. This combos into dash attack or a dash into neutral attack at 0%. It also has non-tumble hitstun at that point, making the combos extremely consistent.
Back throw Friction Throw (フリクションスルー) 11% Pins the opponent to the ground and drags them backward before flinging them behind himself. KOs at 124% at the edge of Final Destination, though Rage greatly assists its KO power.
Up throw Super Back Breaker (スーパーバックブリーカー) 16% Heaves the opponent over his head, leaps high into the air, and then descends to perform an Argentine backbreaker rack drop. This is the most damaging throw in the entire game, but KOs late at around 180%. Stages with low upper blast lines and/or high platforms help mitigate this issue, as it carries opponents upward in a similar fashion to Kirby, Meta Knight, and Charizard's up throws.
Down throw Piledriver (パイルハンマー, Pile Hammer) 5% A powerbomb. Has the lowest damage output of K. Rool's throws, but this is compensated by its burial ability granting it followup potential. K. Rool's most versatile throw overall, as well as one of his most versatile tools in general. Down throw follows up to numerous moves depending on the opponent's percent, including jab, up tilt, and up air at lower to mid percents, as well as forward tilt, forward and down smash at higher percents. It is also possible to infinite many fighters by throwing them, using jab while they're buried and re-grabbing them when they are released. However, most followups can be avoided if the opponent mashes out (especially since the throw itself is slow and gives plenty of time to react), making its KO setups unreliable at much higher percents. Only dash attack, forward and up tilts are able to follow up at 125% and KO reliably. However, up smash and up aerial can be used to discourage mashing and create 50/50 situations at lower percents, as the prior KOs at 100% a lot of the time.
Floor attack (front)   7% Swipes in front of himself with one claw, then kicks behind himself with one foot.
Floor attack (back)   7% Swipes his claw around himself.
Floor attack (trip)   5% Swipes both sides of himself with his claws.
Edge attack   10% Pulls himself up from the ledge and swipes forward with one claw. Has very long range, being slightly shorter than Bowser's.
Neutral special Blunderbuss 13% (Kannonball), 12% (throw), 17% (relaunched Kannonball) Pulls out a blunderbuss and fires a Kannonball forward, while donning the pirate hat worn by his alter-ego "Kaptain K. Rool" in Donkey Kong Country 2: Diddy's Kong Quest. Only one Kannonball can be in play at one time, with another being usable after around 2.5 seconds. After a Kannonball is fired, the special button can be held to use the blunderbuss's vacuum function, sucking in nearby enemies or the Kannonball itself (though the move will eventually cancel after several seconds), similarly to Inhale. K. Rool can drop through soft platforms while vacuuming with his blunderbuss, and he also can move left and right as well while airborne, which is very useful for ledgetrapping. Once it sucks something in, K. Rool will immediately launch it out at a slight angle upward in front or behind him, or directly upwards, depending on the held direction. The blunderbuss "throw" KOs at 100% near the edge of Final Destination, though it deals lower knockback upwards or if reversed. A launched fighter or re-launched Kannonball is capable of KOing as early as 70%, with the Kannonball lingering while doing minor damage after the first hit.
Side special Crownerang 9% (projectile), 7% (returning), 6% (item) Takes off his crown and flings it forward in a style based on his boss battle in Donkey Kong Country. Functions similarly to Boomerang. Has 12% damage-based armor while K. Rool is throwing his crown. Deals less damage when returning. Unlike Boomerang, it cannot be smash thrown. The crown will attempt to return to K. Rool while flying, though it will slowly lose altitude. Only one crown can be thrown at once. If K. Rool fails to catch it, the crown will drop as an item for anyone else to use, and will reappear on his head after 12 seconds or if K. Rool touches it again (does not count if the crown hits him as a thrown item, or if the crown is from another K. Rool). The pickup animation can be canceled through using a move or "unavoidable" animations such as jumpsquat when coming into contact. It also has a number of advanced techniques, such as Crown sliding.
Up special Propellerpack 3% (propellers) Equips the Propellerpack worn by his alter-ego "Baron K. Roolenstein" in Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble, and flies upward. Covers an excellent amount of distance, allowing K. Rool to fly from one end of Final Destination to the other, though changing direction is difficult. Upon reaching peak height for a moment, K. Rool will slowly drift down while flapping his arms as a direct reference to his damaged state during his boss battle in Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong's Double Trouble. Pressing down will render K. Rool helpless, make him fall faster, and lower his landing lag. The propellers above K. Rool deal multiple weak hits, protecting him from edgeguards while even allowing him to drag opponents to the top blast line, though this can be DI'd out of if it hits more than 3 times.
Down special Gut Check 1.5× (sweetspot), 1.05× (sourspot), 1.5× (reflected projectiles) Puffs out his stomach and retaliates against attacks. It works like a counterattack and can also reflect projectiles. However, the counter hitbox is centered on K.Rool's stomach, making the rest of his body vulnerable (most notably his face), much like the Melee and Brawl versions of Toad. Its sweetspot has a damage multiplier of 1.5×, tying it with Counter Throw for the second-highest damage multiplier out of any counterattack in Ultimate, surpassed only by Tetrakarn. When reflecting, the stomach has a lingering hitbox that also scales with damage. This can make it KO at very low percentages using moves like Charge Shot to boost damage. This is usually seen when projectiles are reflected from close range.
Final Smash Blast-O-Matic 3% (stomp), 10% (tackle), 25% (laser), 10% (ending) K. Rool stomps, stunning any nearby opponents, and lunges forward while catching those in his path. If at least one opponent was caught, a cutscene plays in which K. Rool sits on his throne on Crocodile Isle before firing a massive laser from his Blast-o-Matic cannon. The laser then fires through Donkey Kong Island, destroying the island and dealing massive damage on the victims.

On-screen appearance[edit]

  • Drops from the sky with his arms crossed before chuckling. His pose is based on how he appears in Donkey Konga, while him falling from the sky is a reference to Donkey Kong Country.


  • Up taunt: Viciously bites forward four times.
  • Side taunt: Slaps his belly once in amusement. Amusingly, this taunt also uses K. Rool's Belly Super Armor during the frames before he slaps his belly.
  • Down taunt: Does a sumo-esque stomp.

Idle poses[edit]

  • Angrily bites the air.
  • Slaps his belly twice and gloats happily.

K. Rool's idle pose resembles his idle from Donkey Kong Country.

Crowd cheer[edit]

Cheer (English) Cheer (Japanese/Chinese) Cheer (Italian) Cheer (Dutch) Cheer (French)
Custom combination of the flags of Canada, the USA, and Mexico.

Source, tweaked to fix rendering issues
Description Krem - ling Krew! (high voices) Kin - gu! (low voices) Kuru - ru! King - K. - Rool! Ro - oo! King - K!
Cheer (German) Cheer (Spanish) Cheer (Russian) Cheer (Korean)
Custom combination of the flags of Canada, the USA, and Mexico.

Source, tweaked to fix rendering issues
Description King K. Rooool *stomp* *clap* *stomps 2 times* *clap* King - K. - Rool! Custom combination of the flags of Canada, the USA, and Mexico.
King - Kah - Rool! Source, tweaked to fix rendering issues
King - Kah - Rool! King -- Kuru!

Victory poses[edit]

  • Left: Shifts his eyes left and right before ending with a triumphant pose.
  • Up: Flips his cape around before ending in a pose similar to his official artwork.
  • Right: Belly flops on screen and rebounds with a backflip, before landing on his feet and slapping his belly with his tongue sticking out.
A flourished orchestration of the first few bars of "Gang-Plank Galleon", his boss theme from the original Donkey Kong Country.

In competitive play[edit]

Upon Ultimate's release, many players noted King K. Rool's numerous strengths that were never seen before on a super-heavyweight character, namely his two projectiles, unique Belly Super Armor mechanic, a down throw that - in theory - leads to very early kill confirms, good startup on many moves, and a very long-ranged recovery. This, in addition to his other strengths more typical to his weight class, caused the majority of top professionals to consider King K. Rool a potential high or even top tier character, while also getting a notorious reputation of being "broken" among less experienced players.

However, it quickly became apparent that King K. Rool wasn't nearly as good as players thought, as he has some of the nastiest downsides in the game to counter his strengths. This includes a gigantic hurtbox, a flawed disadvantage state, and high endlag on his moves to offset their "unchallengeable" startup. He also has various exploitable mechanics on many of his strengths, such as his extremely slow and predictable recovery, laggy projectiles, and Belly Super Armor being breakable. His down throw is also easy to mash out until higher percents, rendering seemingly "broken" kill confirms not true until higher percents. While he can use mash deterrents and reads to "game" the system, these are inconsistent by nature, often making early kills somewhat uncommon and risky. Compounding this, King K. Rool received nerfs in 2.0.0 that made his already negative perception even worse than before at the time, even though they turned out to not matter as much as players thought. Because of these factors, almost every top professional saw him as one of the worst characters in the game within months, which was especially notorious among the Japanese top players, many of which considered him to be the single worst character in the game.

King K. Rool later received small but helpful buffs in patch 3.0.0, although they weren't significant enough to address his significant flaws, and his competitive reputation remained poor. Nevertheless, it improved his representation. While still typically ranked very low, players such as Ben Gold, KirbyKid, and Muk began to earn results that made people question his reputation as a low tier character, which was evident when Ben Gold managed to win Battle Arena Melbourne 11, an Australian B-tier tournament, with solo King K. Rool.

He would then receive more impactful buffs later on in multiple patches. Patch 6.0.0 further shifted player's opinions to a more positive side, as it alleviated some of his weaknesses. Some top players still viewed him rather lowly, with many Japanese top professionals still viewing him as the single worst character in the game. However, some western top players shifted into a more positive view. Some of them, such as ESAM and MVD, went so far as to say that King K. Rool is not a low tier, but a mid tier character instead.

Patch 8.0.0, which arguably brought K. Rool his most significant buffs, caught more attention, as the changes to both Belly Super Armor and Crownerang's armor, especially the latter, give him new options to alleviate his poor disadvantage state, and his improvements to his already good grab game and dash attack has given him more consistent KO potential. Because of this, even more top professional players have shifted their opinion into a more positive side, stating that K. Rool might finally have some potential. Dabuz goes as far as saying that K. Rool is a high-mid tier character, and some Japanese players - such as Raito, who considered him to be the worst character in the game - have stated that K. Rool might be a lot more threatening. How much better he is after all the patches, as well as his true viability, however, remain to be seen; some of his fatal flaws are still present even after numerous buffs, often demanding a secondary pick for his worst matchups.

Most historically significant players[edit]

See also: Category:King K. Rool professionals (SSBU)

Classic Mode: Super Heavyweight Class[edit]

King K. Rool's congratulations screen.

King K. Rool's opponents are among the heaviest characters in the game. The boss of this route is Galleom, likely as a reference to his hulking proportions and his postures being similar to K. Rool's arch-nemesis, Donkey Kong. Additionally, "Galleom" is spelled similarly to "Galleon", which can be a reference to the song most associated with King K. Rool, Gang-Plank Galleon.

Round Opponent Stage Music
1 CharizardHeadSSBU.png Charizard Unova Pokémon League Victory Road - Pokémon Ruby / Pokémon Sapphire
2 BowserHeadSSBU.png Bowser Find Mii King Bowser - Super Mario Bros. 3
3 KingDededeHeadSSBU.png King Dedede Boxing Ring King Dedede's Theme (Brawl)
4 RidleyHeadSSBU.png Ridley Brinstar Depths (Battlefield form) Vs. Ridley
5 GanondorfHeadSSBU.png Ganondorf Bridge of Eldin Calamity Ganon Battle - Second Form
6 DonkeyKongHeadSSBU.png Donkey Kong Kongo Jungle Crocodile Cacophony
Bonus Stage
Final Galleom Base Boss Battle - Super Smash Bros. Brawl

Note: When fighting Charizard, its Pokémon Trainer is absent.

Note 2: Items are disabled in the sixth round.

Credits roll after completing Classic Mode. Completing it as King K. Rool has Gang-Plank Galleon accompany the credits.

Role in World of Light[edit]

Finding King K. Rool in World of Light

King K. Rool was among the fighters that were summoned to fight against the army of Master Hands.

During the opening cutscene, King K. Rool was present on the cliffside when Galeem unleashed his beams of light. He was vaporized offscreen and placed under Galeem's imprisonment along with the other fighters, excluding Kirby.

King K. Rool was one of the many fighters that fell under Dharkon's control upon Galeem's first defeat. He can be found on a ship in the Mysterious Dimension sub-area, guarded by the spirit of fellow pirate, Risky Boots. To reach his location, the player must first defeat the Scarfy spirit, which is one of the right answers to a quiz question of which spirit Kirby cannot inhale. Then, the player must defeat the spirit of Trevor C. Belmont, the right answer to a quiz question of which spirit assisted Alucard in defeating Dracula.

Fighter Battle[edit]

No. Image Name Type Power Stage Music
King K. Rool SSBU.png
King K. Rool
10,600 Pirate Ship Gang-Plank Galleon


King K. Rool's fighter spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking King K. Rool in World of Light allows the player to preview the first 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.

Additionally, he makes an appearance as a few primary spirits under his alter egos from the Donkey Kong Country series.

In Spirit battles[edit]

Conditions in italic aren't listed on the Spirit Battle preview screen.

As the main opponent[edit]

Spirit Battle parameters
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music
SSBU spirit Wart.png
Wart Super Mario Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png
Peach PeachHeadWhiteSSBU.png
4,000 Skyworld (Battlefield form) •Hazard: Slumber Floor •Defeat the main fighter to win
•The floor is sleep-inducing
Boss Theme - Super Mario Bros. 2
SSBU spirit Kritter.png
Kritter Donkey Kong Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png
1,700 Kongo Jungle •Defense ↑ •The enemy has increased defense
•The enemy starts the battle with a Rocket Belt
Jungle Level (64)
SSBU spirit Klaptrap.png
Klaptrap Donkey Kong Series •Tiny King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png
4,000 Kongo Jungle •Assist Trophy Enemies (Klaptrap) •Hostile assist trophies will appear Stickerbush Symphony
SSBU spirit Kaptain K. Rool.png
Kaptain K. Rool Donkey Kong Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBrownSSBU.png (180 HP)
13,500 Halberd •Invisibility •The enemy's neutral special has increased power
Stamina battle
•The enemy is invisible after a little while
Crocodile Cacophony
SSBU spirit Lord Fredrik.png
Lord Fredrik Donkey Kong Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadWhiteSSBU.png
2,300 Summit (Battlefield form) •Hazard: Ice Floor •The floor is frozen Swinger Flinger
SSBU spirit The Imprisoned.png
The Imprisoned The Legend of Zelda Series •Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlackSSBU.png (140 HP)
4,600 Gerudo Valley •Assist Trophy Enemies (Ghirahim) •The enemy has super armor but moves slower
•Timed stamina battle (1:30)
•Hostile assist trophies will appear
Ballad of the Goddess (Remix)
SSBU spirit Bokoblin.png
Bokoblin The Legend of Zelda Series •Tiny King K. Rool Team KingKRoolHeadBrownSSBU.png×4
1,400 Gaur Plain (Battlefield form) N/A •The enemy starts the battle with an Ore Club Kass's Theme
SSBU spirit Queen Metroid.png
Queen Metroid Metroid Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBrownSSBU.png (180 HP)
13,300 Brinstar (Battlefield form) •Giant
•Attack Power ↑
•The enemy is giant after a little while
Stamina battle
•The enemy has increased attack power after a little while
Boss Battle 4 - Metroid: Samus Returns
Ripped image. Source:
Kraid Metroid Series •Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png (280 HP)
10,000 Brinstar Depths (Ω form) •Jump Power ↓
•Move Speed ↓
Stamina battle
•The enemy is giant
Brinstar Depths (Melee)
SSBU spirit Snorlax.png
Snorlax Pokémon Series •Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlackSSBU.png (500 HP)
4,500 Tortimer Island N/A •Timed stamina battle (1:00)
•The enemy prefers not to move
•The enemy heals over time
Main Theme - Pokémon Red & Pokémon Blue (Melee)
SSBU spirit Wobbuffet.png
Wobbuffet Pokémon Series •Reflect King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png×2
4,300 The Great Cave Offensive (Battlefield form) N/A •The enemy reflects projectiles
•The enemy favors down specials
Pokémon Gold / Pokémon Silver Medley
SSBU spirit Tyranitar.png
Tyranitar Pokémon Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png
3,900 Mushroomy Kingdom (Battlefield form) •Sudden Damage •You'll occasionally take sudden damage after a little while Pokémon Gold / Pokémon Silver Medley
SSBU spirit Draug.png
Draug Fire Emblem Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png (120 HP)
2,400 Castle Siege (hazards off) •Defense ↑ •The enemy has super armor but moves slower
Stamina battle
•The enemy has increased defense
Under This Banner
Thanatos Kid Icarus Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBrownSSBU.png
3,800 Kalos Pokémon League (Battlefield form) •Tiny
•The enemy is giant
•The enemy is tiny after a little while
In the Space-Pirate Ship
SSBU spirit Shake King.png
Shake King Wario Land Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadYellowSSBU.png
1,900 Pirate Ship (hazards off) •Earthquake •Periodic earthquakes will shake the stage
•The enemy favors grabs and throws
Ruins - Wario Land: Shake It!
SSBU spirit Emperor Bulblax.png
Emperor Bulblax Pikmin Series •Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadYellowSSBU.png (160 HP)
9,700 Distant Planet (Ω form) N/A •The enemy has super armor and is hard to launch or make flinch
Stamina battle
•The enemy is giant
Main Theme - Pikmin (Remix)
from the game files
Bear Hugger Punch-Out!! Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadPinkSSBU.png (140 HP)
3,500 Boxing Ring N/A •The enemy's throws have increased power
Stamina battle
World Circuit Theme
from the game files
King Hippo Punch-Out!! Series •Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadPinkSSBU.png (160 HP)
9,500 Boxing Ring N/A Stamina battle
•The enemy is giant
Minor Circuit (Remix)
Artwork used for King Knight's Spirit. Ripped from Game Files
King Knight Shovel Knight Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadYellowSSBU.png
2,000 Mushroom Kingdom U (Slide Lift Tower) N/A •The enemy's dash attacks have increased power
•The enemy starts the battle with a Star Rod
Flash in the Dark (Dr. Wily Stage 1)
SSBU spirit Cetacea.png
Cetacea DRAGON QUEST Series •Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadWhiteSSBU.png (200 HP)
Hero HeroHeadSSBU.png (70 HP)
9,500 Yggdrasil's Altar (Ω form) N/A •Defeat the main fighter to win
•The enemy has super armor but moves slower
•Timed stamina battle (1:30)
•The enemy favors neutral air attack
The Hero Goes Forth with a Determination
SSBU spirit Max Brass.png
Max Brass ARMS King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadYellowSSBU.png (180 HP)
12,600 Norfair (Ω form) •Attack Power ↑
•The enemy is giant when the enemy's at high damage
•Stamina battle
•The enemy has increased attack power when the enemy's at high damage
Sky Arena
SSBU spirit Master Kohga.png
Master Kohga The Legend of Zelda Series King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadOrangeSSBU.png
•Giant Mii Swordfighter MiiSwordfighterHeadSSBU.png (Moveset 2133, Yiga Clan Mask, Yiga Clan Outfit)
3,400 Suzaku Castle (Battlefield form) •Item: Banana Peel •Defeat the main fighter to win
•The enemy favors neutral specials
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Woodlands - The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes

As a minion[edit]

Spirit Battle parameters Inspiration
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music Character
SSBU spirit Chaotix.png
Chaotix Sonic The Hedgehog Series Sonic SonicHeadPurpleSSBU.png
Pichu PichuHeadCyanSSBU.png
King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png
1,600 Windy Hill Zone •Invisibility •The enemy is invisible Sonic Heroes Vector the Crocodile
Sable Prince
Frog & Snake Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru Greninja GreninjaHeadGreenSSBU.png
King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png
3,600 Dream Land GB (Castle Lololo interior) •Assist Trophy Enemies (Sablé Prince) •Hostile assist trophies will appear Kirby Retro Medley (Castle Lololo) Snake
Allen Culdcept Series Shulk ShulkHeadBlackSSBU.png
King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadBlackSSBU.png
Ridley RidleyHeadRedSSBU.png
3,500 Arena Ferox •Item: Assist Trophy •Defeat the main fighter to win
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Worthy Rival Battle Werebear

Alternate costumes[edit]

King K. Rool Palette (SSBU).png
KingKRoolHeadSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadOrangeSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadBlueSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadYellowSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadPinkSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadBlackSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadBrownSSBU.png KingKRoolHeadWhiteSSBU.png

Reveal trailer[edit]


Fighter Showcase Video[edit]


  • Outside of minor cameos and rereleases of older titles, Smash Ultimate marks King K. Rool's first physical appearance in a bit over a decade. He had last appeared in Mario Super Sluggers, which released on June 19, 2008 in Japan, August 25, 2008 in North America, and was never released in Europe or Australia.
    • Additionally, this is currently the only Nintendo Switch game in which King K. Rool appears.
    • DK Jungle Climber, released in Europe on October 12 and Australia on November 1, 2007 marked the last time King K. Rool physically appeared in these regions.
  • King K. Rool is the third playable Smash Bros. character to have been created outside Japan, following Diddy Kong, also created as part of the Donkey Kong Country series by the British developer Rare, and Dark Samus, who was created by the Texas-based Retro Studios.
  • King K. Rool is the fourth of five newcomers to be announced in Ultimate that was previously featured as a Mii Fighter costume in Super Smash Bros. 4. The other four are Inkling, Daisy, Chrom, and Isabelle.
  • According to Masahiro Sakurai, King K. Rool's inclusion in Ultimate was a result of his popularity in the Super Smash Bros. Fighter Ballot.[2]
    • As a result of King K. Rool's inclusion, fans of the character issued a thank you letter to Masahiro Sakurai and Nintendo of America for including him as a playable fighter. The letter was signed by fans and Nintendo of America even wrote back to the fans, expressing gratitude towards them for the fan letter.
  • Like King Dedede, Lucina, Simon and Richter, K. Rool's name is pronounced differently between the different international versions of Ultimate. It is pronounced "King Kay-Rool" in English and "King Kruel" in Japanese.
    • This is the first time that the English name is spoken verbally in a game. The first time it was spoken verbally was in the pilot episode of the Donkey Kong Country animated series, although it was alternated with the pronunciation "King Kuh-Rool" before the pronunciation of "King Kay-Rool" was dropped entirely.
  • King K. Rool is the second character in the series whose back aerial meteor smashes opponents, the first being Lucas.
    • King K. Rool is also the second character who has a smash attack that meteor smashes, in his up smash, first being Bayonetta's down smash, though it isn't used for spiking opponents.
  • During early gameplay footage released by Nintendo showing King K. Rool facing off against Snake, the announcer did not say, "wins" after saying King K. Rool's name on the victory screen. This was later fixed.
  • King K. Rool is the second character in the series with the ability to counter attacks and to reflect projectiles in his default moveset, the first being Palutena.
  • King K. Rool is the only character in the series with a taunt that utilizes armor.
  • King K. Rool is the character that made the most appearances in newcomer trailers in CGI form, appearing in his own, Ken and Incineroar's, Banjo & Kazooie's, and Sephiroth's trailers.
  • King K. Rool, along with Wario and Incineroar, each have a Classic Mode route that consists almost entirely of super-heavyweight fighters.
    • Incineroar is the only heavy character that is not encountered in King K. Rool's Classic Mode route.
  • King K. Rool is the second most common opponent for Classic Mode routes, as he appears in 19 different routes, with the most being Link with 22 different routes.
  • Pausing and zooming in on and around King K. Rool during his side taunt reveals a gap between his scales and his belly armor.[3]
  • King K. Rool is one of five characters whose unlocking battle in World of Light is not on either Final Destination or an Ω form. The other four are Peach, Daisy, Toon Link, and Mii Gunner.
  • If King K. Rool gets grabbed by a grab that uses a unique animation on capturing characters (Snake's grab, Ganondorf's Flame Choke, etc.) while using his forward smash, the boxing glove will remain on his hand until he gets released.
  • King K. Rool's animation when using the Home-Run Bat's forward smash utilizes a one-handed swing, similar to his batting stance in Mario Super Sluggers.
  • In the Canadian French version, the name tag and voice clip from the announcer on the victory screen is slightly different from the one used on the character select screen, instead featuring a noticeable translation of "the" (le Roi K. Rool).
  • When fighting off the fifty puppet fighter army as Master Hand in World of Light, King K. Rool is one of the eight fighters fought there, being affiliated with Dharkon.
  • With a weight value of 133, King K. Rool is the heaviest newcomer to Ultimate in general.
  • King K. Rool's description from the North American amiibo website is based on his NTSC trophy description from Super Smash Bros. 4.