Luigi (ルイージ, Luigi) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was revealed for the game along with the rest of the veterans on June 12th, 2018. Like in games prior to Super Smash Bros. 4, he reprises his role as an unlockable character instead of a starter character. Luigi is classified as fighter #09, just behind the eight starter characters.
As in Smash 4, Charles Martinet's portrayal of Luigi from Super Smash Bros. Brawl was repurposed for Ultimate.
How to unlock
Complete one of the following:
With the exception of the third method, Luigi must then be defeated on Luigi's Mansion.
Luigi is a middleweight who is somewhat floaty, and has attributes that deviate from most characters of his weight class. Luigi has average walking and dashing speeds, the second slowest air speed, average air acceleration, slightly below-average gravity, and below-average falling speed, fastfalling speed and traction. Luigi also sports a very high jump and double jump. Overall, Luigi is a moderately floaty character who is sluggish in some aspects, especially in the air.
Like his brother, Luigi can be very difficult to punish, as only four of his moves have more than 9 frames of startup lag (forward smash, down aerial, Fireball, and Green Missile) and a multitude of moves that hit before frame 5, such as neutral aerial or neutral attack. Luigi's excellent frame data is complemented by the impressive utility of his overall moveset. Neutral attack's damage output and range are decent, and the first two hits can jab lock. Luigi's tilt attacks also have their own perks: forward tilt can be angled, and is useful for spacing; up tilt has excellent combo and juggling potential while possessing superior range to Mario's; and down tilt is an incredibly quick and highly spammable move that can combo into itself. Finally, Luigi's dash attack has quick start-up, and with its reduced ending lag as well as its increased damage output and knockback, it is a much better move for approaching and attacking than in previous titles.
Luigi's smash attacks are all among the fastest of their kind, have below-average ending lag, and possess enough knockback to be reliable finishers, allowing them to quickly and effectively punish opponents close to him, while being difficult to punish themselves on shield. Forward smash deals extra shield damage, up smash is an effective anti-air attack due to rendering Luigi's head intangible while its hitboxes are active, and down smash is very useful for punishing rolls thanks to its minimal lag, respectable damage output and long range. Both up smash and down smash also have set-up potential at low percents if Luigi successfully covers the opponent's options afterward.
Luigi's aerial attacks are also very useful, due to their combination of fast startup, quick interruptibility (except for neutral and back aerials), and ability to auto-cancel in a short hop. Neutral aerial is a sex kick and, like in previous installments, the only one that launches opponents vertically, which benefits its clean and late hitboxes: the former is a great combo breaker and a situational KOing option near the upper blast line, whereas the latter is a very useful combo starter when SHFF'd. Forward aerial has the fastest duration of its kind and launches at the Sakurai angle; at low to medium percentages, these traits make it very reliable for approaching or down throw-initiated combos into itself, neutral aerial and up aerial, as well as a reliable edge-guarding option at high percentages. Back aerial has a very powerful clean hitbox and long range, which enable it to function as a safe and reliable KOing and edgeguarding option, or as an approach option via reverse aerial rush. Up aerial is useful for combos, since it can either extend them or, thanks to having the lowest amount of landing lag out his aerials, use its clean hitbox to start them at low percentages when SHFF'd. Lastly, down aerial is among the fastest of its kind, while its clean hitbox is a meteor smash.
Much like his brother, Luigi has a useful grab game, though he has a vastly different tether grab where he uses the Poltergust G-00 to grab his opponents, firing a toilet plunger at the opponent. The plunger can grab opponents from a decent distance, preventing the necessity for Luigi to get up close to his foes. Even beyond his grab, the toilet plunger functions as a projectile, dealing minor damage and knockback, giving it some edgeguarding potential. This is further compounded by the fact that it cannot be absorbed or reflected by opponents. Like Mario, Luigi has an incredibly quick pummel, being able to deal multiple hits to opponents, and still follow up with his useful throws. Luigi's forward throw deals respectable damage, and is useful for repositioning opponents or setting up edgeguards against them at higher percents. Back throw also deals respectable damage, but it deals very high knockback, allowing it to KO at a mere 120%, or even earlier with rage. Back throw is also quick, making it safe to use. Up throw also deals average damage and knockback, and possesses limited follow-up potential into forward or up aerials at mid percents, while having a collateral hitbox to harm bystanders. Lastly, there is down throw, which is Luigi's main combo throw, and one of his most useful attacks. Down throw deals average knockback, has quick overall lag, and launches at a vertical angle, enabling it to lead into potent and damaging combos. Down throw can combo into moves such as up tilt, up smash, all of Luigi's aerials and Super Jump Punch, due to its aforementioned traits.
As a pseudo-clone of Mario, Luigi has two special moves that are derived from his older brother, yet his versions deviate in noticeable ways. Fireball is a projectile that is useful for pressuring, hindering an opponent's approach, or setting up an attack. Unlike Mario's Fireball, Luigi's is unaffected by gravity, which makes it somewhat less effective at hindering an opponent's recovery or edgeguard attempt. Super Jump Punch has very quick startup like Mario's, but propels him vertically instead of diagonally. By extension, it consists of a sweetspot and sourspot, instead of multiple hitboxes like Mario's. Its sweetspot boasts devastating power, which makes it a very potent punishment option, yet it is very risky because of its virtually useless sourspot and high ending lag.
Aside from these, Luigi's other special moves are completely distinct from Mario's. Green Missile deals damage and covers horizontal distance, both of which can be increased thanks to its ability to be charged. However, it is also possible for Green Missile to misfire; in this case, it becomes even stronger than the fully charged version, and travels much further. Lastly, Luigi Cyclone can function as a KOing option near the upper blast line, and is a guaranteed follow up out of down throw even at high percents, and can even be a KO combo on platforms.
However, Luigi has some notable disadvantages. He has fairly sluggish mobility, with his extremely low air speed and floaty physics making landing fairly difficult, especially against faster characters. His short range makes him fairly susceptible to getting outspaced by characters with disjointed hitboxes, and his lack of a reflector makes it difficult for him to deal with projectile camping and projectile-heavy playstyles in general when combined with his awkward mobility. Additionally, his terrible air physics make it difficult for him to contest with characters with better horizontal movement airborne despite his high jumps. His recovery is also subpar, as Luigi Cyclone no longer gives much vertical distance, leaving him to deal with his poor air speed and linear Super Jump Punch and Green Missile moves.
Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4
While Luigi has received numerous buffs and changes that benefit him, he also suffers from a few major nerfs, compounded by universal changes to the engine; it is currently debatable whether Luigi has been buffed or nerfed overall.
A notable buff to Luigi is his faster mobility, which contributes to both his approach and recovery; his faster dash, and the ability to now use any grounded attack out of a run, allows Luigi to overwhelm his opponents with fast attacks. His improved air speed, combined with his high jumps, allows him to easily traverse great aerial distances. Luigi's air game is also improved, due to his aforementioned air speed, the reduced short hop timing, and the decreased landing lag in his aerials. Thus, Luigi's aerials have greater safety, and easier times setting up combos on opponents.
Luigi's down tilt and dash attack also have much less ending lag, resulting in better combo potential for both attacks, despite the former's drastic damage decrease; the latter, however, deals significantly more damage. Some of Luigi's main KOing options are buffed; his forward smash, perhaps one of Luigi's best finishers, has its knockback increased when inputting its standard and down angled versions, improving his KO potential. Likewise, his down smash—another one of his best finishers—now prioritizes its sweetspots over its sourspots, increasing its consistency as well.
Luigi also receives a tether grab in the form of his Poltergust G-00, offering much greater range than his former grab, but in exchange for greater startup and ending lag. The Poltergust G-00 can also be used in the air, but it has much greater ending lag, and it cannot be used to recover. However, it fires a toilet plunger, which disconnects from the Poltergust G-00 and has a hitbox that can gimp.
Luigi's special moves have mostly been improved, as well. Super Jump Punch travels higher, making it a better recovery option, while its landing lag is also decreased. Luigi Cyclone deals greater damage, grants Luigi intangibility on its early frames, combos more consistently due to its windbox, and has reduced ending lag.
However, Luigi also had a couple of notable nerfs as well. The biggest example is Luigi Cyclone's decreased utility as a recovery move; it travels much less vertical distance when button-mashed, thus making his already vulnerable recovery even more linear and exploitable. This nerf also removes the ability to gimp with the move, which was an important part of his playstyle in the previous Smash game. Additionally, while Luigi’s grab remains one of the best in the game, it has noticeably more startup and ending lag, making it more difficult to grab opponents in certain situations, while also being more punishable if whiffed.
The changes to the game’s physics are a mixed bag for Luigi: his notoriously awful traction has significantly improved, no longer being the worst in the game, and as stated earlier, he sports a faster dash and air speed. However, the faster pace of Ultimate, combined with the universal nerfing of shields, makes it much more difficult for Luigi to grab foes like he could in SSB4, with the changes to his grab accentuating this issue as a result of its slower startup. Lastly, despite some improvements, Luigi still retains much of the same awkward movement he has been suffering from since Smash 64, both with his below-average ground movement and his atrociously slow air speed, as well as a poor recovery and sub-par range.
Overall, Luigi has become even more polarizing than his SSB4 counterpart: his combo and KO potential has become much more explosive, but at the expense of a worse recovery. Luigi has had moderate tournament success in Ultimate so far, with respectable representation from players such as Elegant and Scot! As a result, Luigi appears to remain a viable choice, but it is currently unknown how he fares against the rest of the roster, as his tournament results aren’t as dominating as in SSB4. Unlike his brother, Mario, Luigi's reception is mixed. Some professionals say Luigi is at best a mid-tier thanks to his excellent combo potential and better KO potential compared to Mario, with some even saying Luigi is a low-tier character due to his poor recovery and terrible disadvantage state. If not, most consider Mario to be better. Despite all these flaws, Luigi's mixed changes still make Luigi a threat if put to the right hands.
Throws and other attacks
Luigi has received a mix of buffs and nerfs via game updates. His up smash and Luigi Cyclone deal more knockback, increasing their potency as finishers (particularly the latter's as a followup at high percents), and his up aerial has less ending lag, further improving its combo potential. However, his down aerial has been nerfed much more noticeably, as it no longer meteor smashes grounded opponents (instead behaving like in Smash 4), removing a large part of its combo potential and making zero-to-deaths much harder to perform. Additionally, like many other projectiles, Fireball was changed in 3.0.0 to deal less damage to shields. Overall, while Luigi has lost his consistent zero-to-death setups, aside from that he has seen almost entirely buffs and has gained new finishers and seen improvements to his already powerful grab.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
In competitive play
Classic Mode: Luigi's Nightmares
All of Luigi's opponents are creepy or scary characters or a character using a scary alternate costume. His boss, Dracula, fits in with the theme, as he is a vampire and references the fact that Luigi appears in Simon's reveal trailer.
Role in World of Light
Luigi was one of the many fighters that fell under Dharkon's control upon Galeem's first defeat, and he can be found in the Mysterious Dimension being guarded by the Link (The Legend of Zelda) spirit after Meta Knight has been awakened.
Luigi's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Luigi 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, Luigi makes an appearance in various Primary and Support Spirits.
In Spirit battles
As the main opponent
As a minion
Character Showcase Video
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