in Super Smash Bros. Brawl
|Other playable appearances||in Melee|
|Final Smash||Critical Hit|
Marth (マルス, Marth) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Brawl. He was confirmed to be a playable character on the Smash Bros. DOJO on February 5, 2008. Despite being a "hidden" character, Marth appears in the game's opening video, standing back to back with Meta Knight. Hikaru Midorikawa is the voice of Marth in all regions; the voice actor mentioned in his "Target Lockon!!" column in Dengeki Playstation Vol. 414 that he was not actually called back to record new lines (the "new" voice clips in Brawl were leftovers from the recording sessions for Melee).
Marth ranks 5th on the Brawl tier list, at the very top of the A- tier, a slight drop from 2nd overall in Melee. He possesses long-ranged sword attacks that give him among the best reach in Brawl, allowing him to space very effectively, especially against characters with poor range. Marth also possesses attacks that have remarkably quick startup and great ground mobility, additional power when he lands an attack on the tip of his sword (his forward smash and down aerial being notable examples), strong combo abilities at low percents due to his fast attacks, a strong aerial game overall and edgeguarding abilities (with his forward aerial being very powerful at both aspects).
However, Marth has his flaws with one being in his recovery move, Dolphin Slash, provides decent vertical distance, but only average horizontal distance, making his recovery predictable and rather easily edgehogged. Marth has difficulty KOing without edgeguarding if he fails to sweetspot his finishers due to the much weaker knockback delivered, requiring very precise hard reads to be effective. He can have problems getting off the ledge above 100% due to his slower ledge climbing options above 100% being poor, especially when he has RCO lag and especially against characters like Meta Knight. Even then, he has trouble edge guarding due to a number of characters who have better recoveries. His options when directly above the opponent are fairly poor because his down aerial does not protect him very well from opponents that can juggle him. He also can have difficulty approaching due to his lack of a projectile. Regardless, Marth has among the strongest matchup spreads in Brawl and has achieved strong tournament results.
How to unlock
Complete one of the following:
- Play 10 VS. matches.
- Beat Classic Mode.
- Have Marth join the player's party in the Subspace Emissary (The Battlefield Fortress).
With the exception of the third method, Marth must then be defeated on Castle Siege.
Marth in Brawl is essentially a reprise from Melee. He retains his status as a quick-footed, far ranged lightweight; tall (for his weight class), with stronger aerial attacks. With a great aerial moveset and air defense, Marth is almost unparalleled in the air. Marth also retains certain qualities, such as increased power and hitlag at the tip of his blade, which defines a great part of his playstyle. This tipper mechanic is the basis for Marth's very potent down aerial meteor smash and for his down tilt edgeguard. His attacks, when not tippered, are relatively weak, and hitting with the sweetspot can be difficult (although some attacks are rather easy to sweetspot like his up aerial and down tilt). Most of Marth's attacks have quick startup and good reach, but his attacks can be easily punished if blocked and not spaced well due to often having noticeable ending lag (though his standard special has incredible Shield damage). Marth himself lacks a projectile, but his impressive mobility allows him to avoid opponents' projectiles. Dolphin Slash, which grants Marth invincibility in its first five frames, allows Marth to escape chain grabs and gives him access to a powerful out of shield option that can KO at higher percentages, though it leaves Marth helpless and vulnerable until he lands, making it a high-risk high reward move. As a recovery, the move travels a decent vertical distance, slightly higher than the distance between the main body of Battlefield and its highest platform. Though it can be aimed to travel farther horizontally, Dolphin Slash only provides average horizontal distance and suffers from the landing lag glitch, though Marth can augment his horizontal recovery by charging Shield Breaker. The latter attack has the most horizontal reach out of Marth's moveset, and true to its name, deals high shield damage. Marth players often follow up a shield break with another fully charged, tippered Shield Breaker for a KO. Dancing Blade does high damage and counts as four attacks in the refresh counter, making it great to refresh his other moves as well as inflict high damage on the opponent, and the last hit tilted upwards can KO at higher percentages. As such, Marth is arguably one of the characters least affected by stale-move negation and it is also a good out-of-shield option as it has almost nonexistent startup lag, though like many of Marth's moves, it is easily punished if shielded. Marth's Counter, the fastest counter in the game, can be used to punish opponent attacks and interrupt combos. Marth has good standing grab reach and a very long reaching pivot grab which is combined with the fact that he can chain grab a number of characters using his forward throw (if only for a couple of throws). He also has a grab release infinite on Lucas and Ness (making him a hard counter against those two characters), a chain grab-release to a down air meteor smash (or a slight step followed by a forward smash) on Squirtle, and grab release to down air, forward air, or Dolphin Slash on Meta Knight (although the latter is still considered a hard matchup for Marth). On the downside, his throws are extremely weak in terms of damage and knockback (usually doing only 4% per throw, with the exception of his down throw, which does 5% and his up throw is the only throw that KOs in Sudden Death), although their weak knockback also means they can link into his other moves fairly reliably for racking damage.
Overall, Marth is a fast character whose attack range gives him very potent offensive and defensive options, especially in the air. Thanks to the safety of his moves and their ability to aggressively pressure opponents, he is one of the best offensive characters in the game. His strengths are tempered by his lack of a projectile and his light weight relative to his height, though he is heavy enough to make him vulnerable to King Dedede's down throw chaingrab. Marth also has difficulty KOing the heavier characters, especially those with good momentum canceling, due to his tipped attacks having high base knockback but low knockback scaling, which forces him to rely on edgeguarding to KO. While he has great options below 100% (best regular ledge climb in the game and a ledge jump which gives him up to +10 invincibility, allowing him to ledge jump into invincible any aerial), those options are replaced with laggy ledge get-ups above 100% (with ledge jump no longer providing invincible aerials) which can be abused by several characters, especially when he has RCO lag. On the upper side, Marth himself has excellent options both juggling and racking damage on opponents who are trying to climb from the ledge thanks to his quick and safe zoning tools.
Changes from Super Smash Bros. Melee
While he was considered a top-tier in Melee, Marth has received a mix of buffs and nerfs in transition to Brawl, but the changes have neither impacted him in certain ways as he was somewhat objectively nerfed overall. Marth's incredible ground movement is less effective than in Melee, due to the weakening of dash dancing and the removal of wavedashing. Additionally, Marth's grab range is also much shorter, making it harder to set-up follow-ups out of his throws. Thus, Marth's neutral game as a whole is weaker, due to less safe movement, and Brawl's more defensive minded metagame, hindering his approach. Additionally, Marth's large combo potential and phenomenal edgeguarding ability were also toned down, as he can no longer create extended, near zero-to-death juggles with the aid of platforms and can also no longer close out stocks consistently when edgeguarding due to the loss of consistency in his down aerial as well as the altered physics of Brawl.
Despite this, his nerfed combo and edgeguarding prowess still remains among the best relative to the cast, and the new mechanics of Brawl help alleviate one of his critical flaws in his poor recovery. Contrary to popular belief, Marth's overall range was increased relative to the cast, combined with the universal nerf of mobility options, this helps Marth zone out his opponents somewhat better than before. The removal of crouch cancelling also removes one of his weaknesses in Melee, where many of his non-tipper moves were crouch-cancelable at low percents. His moves are also relatively stronger when tippered, giving him more KO potential.
As such, while Marth has more potential KO options at high percents, he can only secure such KOs by fishing for them in neutral, which requires incredible reads and thus cannot be done consistently at high level play. Despite this, Marth is still a very favorable character at high level play, and, like Fox and Falco, has fared much better in the transition from Melee to Brawl than other top-tier veterans, such as Captain Falcon and Jigglypuff.
- Marth's clothing and armor have less intricate designs adorning them, and his hair appears thinner.
- All of Marth's sword attacks now make a high-pitched "whoosh" sound that varies depending on the attack's strength.
- Marth no longer vocalizes during his first jump.
- As on-screen appearances were not present in Melee, Marth now receives one.
- Marth has a new alternate blue costume. It is also used for the blue team instead of his default costume.
- Marth walks slower (1.6 → 1.5), though he still has the fastest walk speed in the game.
- Marth dashes slightly slower (1.8 → 1.7).
- Marth's air speed is faster (0.9 → 1.034).
- As with all returning veterans, Marth's falling speed (2.2 → 1.5) and gravity (0.085 → 0.06715) have been significantly decreased. However, relative to the cast, Marth's falling speed and gravity are both slightly higher.
- Marth's fast falling speed is lower (2.5 → 2.1), hindering his defence against juggling.
- However, it is higher relative to both his normal falling speed (13.6% increase → 40%) and the cast going from the 11th highest out of 26 characters to the 12th highest out of 39.
- Marth's traction is lower (0.06 → 0.055), going from the 15th highest in Melee to the 20th highest. Relative to the cast, however, Marth's traction is slightly higher, making it easier for him to punish out of shield.
- Marth jump force is weaker (2.4 → 2.16) however, this does not fully compensate for his lower gravity making him jump higher.
- Marth's jumpsquat is longer (4 frames → 5).
- Marth's soft landing is 1 frame faster (4 frames → 3).
- Marth's spot dodge has a longer duration (frames 2-18 → 2-20), and has less ending lag (FAF 28 → 25) now being faster than most spot dodges.
- Marth's air dodge has more startup lag (frame 4 → 5) now being the slowest in the game.
- Due to slightly altered animations to the majority of his sword swings, Marth has less reach overall. However, his reach is longer relative to the cast, giving him better zoning abilities overall.
- From the introduction to hitlag modifiers, Marth's sourspotted attacks now have low hitlag modifiers (≈0.7x), and his tippered moves now have high hitlag modifiers (≈1.25x/1.3x/1.5x). This makes his sourspotted moves safer on shield and harder to DI, but makes his tippered moves less safe on shield and easier to DI.
- The weakening of dash dancing hinders Marth's ability to mix up his positioning, heavily nerfing his ground movement and neutral game.
- The removal of wavedashing significantly hinders Marth's mobility and approach.
- Marth's backwards glide toss covers much more distance.
- Neutral attack:
- The second hit of neutral attack has less startup lag (frame 5 → 4) and its tipper has increased knockback scaling (60 → 70).
- Neutral attack's transition can no longer be buffered for an extended period of time.
- Neutral attack has more ending lag (FAF 26 (hit 1)/27 (hit 2) → 28 (both)).
- Due to Marth leaning forward less than in Melee, both hits have less reach overall.
- Forward tilt:
- Tippered forward tilt deals less damage (13% → 12%) without full compensation on its knockback (60 (base), 70 (scaling) → 40/80).
- Marth leans over less decreasing its reach.
- Up tilt:
- Up tilt's sword and arm hitboxes are larger (4u/3.2u (clean), 4u/2.8u (late) → 5u/3.5u (both)).
- Tippered up tilt deals less damage (13% → 12%), less knockback (50 (base), 100 (scaling) → 40/90), and has a smaller hitbox (4u → 3.5u).
- Marth's shoulder has a smaller hitbox during the clean hit (3.12u → 2.5u).
- However, the late hit's shoulder hitbox is larger (2.32u → 2.5u).
- Up tilt has more ending lag (FAF 32 → 40), removing much of its ability to cover tech options on platforms, and drastically worsening the move's combo potential.
- Down tilt:
- Down tilt has larger hitboxes (4u/2.8u/3.12u/4u → 4.8u/3.36u/3.74u/4.8u) and now moves Marth forward slightly, further increasing its reach and allowing it to be used as a pseudo-crawl.
- Down tilt has more ending lag (FAF 20 → 22).
- However, down tilt can now be interrupted with shield or a special move allowing him to perform those actions significantly sooner without having to walk or jump (frame 50 → 22).
- Dash attack:
- Tippered dash attack has more base knockback (70 → 80).
- Dash attack has more startup (frame 12 → 13) and ending lag (FAF 40 → 50).
- Dash attack's non tipper sword hitbox deals slightly less damage (11% → 10%).
- Dash attack's sword hitboxes now send opponents horizontally (110° → 45°) improving dash attack's KO potential but hindering its combo potential.
- Forward smash:
- The introduction of SDI multipliers have benefited the tipper of forward smash, as it has a multiplier of 0x, meaning it can no longer be SDI'd.
- Forward smash has more ending lag (FAF 48 → 50).
- Forward smash has smaller hitboxes (4u/3.2u/3.6u/4u → 3u/3u/4u/3u/3u) (although it has gained an addition sword hitbox), and Marth steps forward less when using it, decreasing its reach even further and overall making platform tippers less common and much harder to perform.
- Tippered forward smash deals less damage (20% → 19%).
- Up smash:
- Up smash has less startup lag with a longer duration (frame 13-16 → 12-18).
- Up smash has larger hitboxes (4.4u/4.8u/4.4u → 4.9u/4.9u/5u).
- The body sourspot hitboxes have increased set knockback (100 → 155) and now launch the opponent into the sword (70° → 125°), akin to Roy's up smash in Melee, increasing its maximum damage potential (18% → 21%), and greatly improving its utility against grounded opponents.
- The sword's sourspot has increased base knockback (30 → 45) and no longer takes priority over the sweetspot.
- Up smash has more ending lag (FAF 46 → 50).
- The body sourspots deal less damage (8% → 4%).
- The sword sourspot deals less damage (15% → 14%),
- The tipper deals less damage (18% → 17%) and knockback (60 (base), 80 (scaling) → 40/70).
- Down smash:
- Down smash's back hit has less startup lag (frame 20 → 18).
- The sourspots deal more damage (11% → 14% (front)/13% (back)).
- The sword's knockback scaling on both hits was not fully compensated (72 → 70).
- The front hit's body hit's knockback was not fully compensated (20/16 (base), 100 (scaling) → 50/80).
- However, the back hit's body hit's knockback was decreased enough to hinder the move's KO potential despite its increased damage (30/15 (base), 100 (scaling) → 50/70).
- The front tipper deals more damage (16% → 17%).
- Down smash has more startup (frame 5 → 6) and ending lag (FAF 62 → 65).
- The tippers deal much less knockback (70 (base), 100 (scaling) → 50/80) hindering their KO potential despite the front hit's higher damage.
- All aerials except down aerial have less landing lag (15/7 frames → 9 (neutral/forward/up), 24/12 frames → 21 (back)). Due to the removal of L-canceling, however, their landing lag is not fully compensated, with back aerial and the aforementioned down aerial being notably affected by this.
- Forward, back, and up aerials have slightly less reach due to their slightly altered animations where Marth doesn't extend his arm all the way out and his sword being tilted at an angle rather than straight out.
- These new animations are also longer (33 frames → 39 (forward), 39 frames → 43 (back), 45 frames → 55 (up) increasing the amount of time Marth cannot grab the ledge after using those aerials.
- Neutral aerial:
- Neutral aerial now functions like the rest of Marth's moveset where the tipper is stronger than the rest of its hitboxes.
- The non tipper hitboxes deal less damage (4% → 3% (hit 1), 10% → 9% (hit 2)) although the knockback scaling on the second hit's sword and body hitboxes has been compensated (80 → 90).
- The new tipper hitboxes deal more damage (4% → 6% (hit 1), 10% → 12% (hit 2)) and the second hit's tipper has increased knockback scaling (80 → 100) greatly improving its KO potential.
- Neutral aerial has larger hitboxes on both hits (4u/4u/4u/4u → 4.8u/3u/4.8u/4.8u).
- Forward aerial:
- Sourspotted forward aerial deals consistent damage (10%/9% → 10%) and deals more base knockback (30/20 → 40).
- It is easier for Marth to perform two forward aerials in a short hop due to his lower fall speed and the introduction of buffering.
- Forward aerial has more ending lag (FAF 30 → 34).
- Tippered forward aerial has increased knockback (42 (base), 70 (scaling) → 40/80) and now sends opponents horizontally (67° → 361°). This improves its KO and edgeguarding potential, but hinders its combo ability, particularly, this removes its ability to perform a true Ken Combo.
- Back aerial:
- Back aerial deals more damage (10%/9%/13% → 11%/14%), and knockback (30/25/10/30 (base), 70 (scaling) → 30/(85/90)).
- Back aerial has larger hitboxes (4u/4u/4u/4u → 4.6u/4.8u/4.8u).
- Back aerial has more ending lag (FAF 35 → 40).
- Back aerial now causes Marth to be considered facing the opposite direction much earlier (frame 32 → frame 6), now taking place just before the hitboxes are activated, ensuring that he will land facing the opposite direction after hitting an opponent.
- Up aerial:
- Up aerial has a longer duration (frames 5-8 → 5-9).
- Up aerial has larger hitboxes (4u/4u/4u/4u → 4.8u/4.8u/4.8u).
- The sourspots now deal consistent damage (10%/9% → 10%), as well as having more base knockback (30/20/18 → 40).
- The tipper has increased knockback scaling (70 → 80).
- Up aerial is overall much worse for combos because of the new hitstun mechanics and its increased power although it still has true combo potential at low percents and it still remains a powerful juggling tool.
- Down aerial:
- Down aerial has larger hitboxes (3.6u/3.6u/3.6u/3.6u → 4.32u/4.32u/4.32u).
- Down aerial deals more damage (13%/10%/9% → 14%/12%), and the tippered hitbox has more knockback scaling (70 → 80). These changes significantly improve its KO potential.
- The sourspot with lower base knockback (20) has been removed.
- Down aerial has received a new meteor hitbox on frame 7 which is very large (6u) and covers a random area below Marth. These changes considerably increase its range although this hitbox only last for one frame.
- Down aerial's meteor hitboxes have an altered angle (290° → 280°/270°).
- Down aerial's meteor hitboxes no longer take priority over the sourspots (ID# 0 → 2/3) making the tipper harder to land.
- The overall physics changes (mainly the introduction of hitstun canceling, the universally reduced falling speeds and the removal of L-canceling) have considerably hindered down aerial's utility hindering its use as a combo starter/ender as well as its effectiveness as a tool in the neutral.
- However, Marth can now land a sweetspotted down aerial out of a footstool.
- Down aerial's sweetspots are now meteor smashes instead of a spike hindering its reliability compared to its NTSC Melee counterpart (although it is still much more effective than its PAL counterpart due to its increased strength combined with the changes to meteor canceling).
- Down aerial's animation has also changed somewhat, being swung more behind Marth than in Melee.
- This new animation is longer (59 frames → 63) increasing the amount of time Marth cannot grab the ledge after using down aerial.
- Marth's grabs have less start-up (frame 7 → 6 (standing), frame 10 → 9 (dash)), and less ending lag (FAF 31 → 30 (standing), FAF 41 → 40 (dash)).
- The range of Marth's grabs are much shorter, especially his dash grab. The removal of jump-cancelled grabbing is also a particularly harsh nerf for Marth; coupled with the poorer range on the dash grab and weakening of dash dancing, it is significantly harder to land grabs.
- Pummel is faster (FAF 25 → 16).
- Pummel deals less damage (3% → 2%).
- The changes to grab releases benefit Marth more than most characters as he now has multiple follow ups out of a grab release, both aerial and grounded, on various characters while he himself isn't vulnerable to aerial grab release combos.
- Marth releases his opponent one frame later from all of his throws. This makes his throws slightly easier to DI but gives them slightly less ending lag.
- Forward throw:
- Back throw:
- Back throw has less base knockback (70 → 50) and sends opponents at a lower angle (117° → 140°), making it better for follow-ups.
- Up throw:
- Down throw:
- Down throw no longer puts opponents into tumble at very low percents allowing to benefit from the changes to DI.
- Shield Breaker:
- Shield Breaker has a new animation, where Marth assumes a readying stance and charges the Falchion at chest level before thrusting it forward, instead of performing an overhead slash. This increases its horizontal reach but decreases its vertical reach as well as extending Marth's hurtbox further. Marth also only vocalizes when the move is fully charged.
- Shield Breaker now gives Marth a horizontal boost when used in the air (0 → 0.5 (uncharged), 2 (charged)) giving Marth an additional recovery option.
- An uncharged Shield Breaker deals more damage (7% → 8%) making it stronger despite its consistent base knockback (30/34 → 40) and deals more shield damage (38/30 → 42).
- The uncharged version's tipper deals more damage (7% → 9%) and has higher base knockback (40 → 50) along with having increased shield damage (38 → 42).
- Shield Breaker charges much faster (121 frames (2.02 seconds) → 78 frames (1.3 seconds)).
- Shield Breaker has more start-up with a shorter duration (frame 16-21 → 19-22).
- Shield Breaker has noticeably smaller hitboxes (4u/3.12u/3.2u/2.8u/4.4u → 2.5u/3u/3u/2.75u/2.5u) which along with its new animation, reduces its vertical range.
- As a result, the move has significantly less edgeguarding potential.
- A fully charged Shield Breaker also deals less damage (28% → 22%/20%/18%/24%), making it weaker despite its increased base knockback (30/34/40 → 50).
- Fully charged Shield Breaker deals less shield damage (60 → 40) no longer guaranteeing a shield break.
- Dancing Blade:
- Dancing Blade has been heavily reworked.
- Dancing Blade no longer causes Marth to glow. Instead, the sword trail glows according to the direction inputted (red → side, blue → up, green → down).
- The first three hits have gained a low hitlag multiplier (1x → 0.3x) making the move significantly more difficult to escape from.
- Hit 1:
- The first hit has less startup lag (frame 6 → 4).
- However, its total duration remains unchanged giving it more ending lag.
- The first hit has decreased base knockback (55 → 35/50) and its angles have been altered (85°/96°/80°/76° → 75°/88°/20°) allowing it to link into the second hit more reliably.
- The first hit no longer deals consistent damage (4% → 3%/4%).
- However, this further aids the move to connect properly.
- The first hit gives Marth a greater vertical boost which can now be combined with wavebouncing for recovery mix ups or to escape juggles.
- The first hit can also only stall Marth in the air when used after a jump rather than continuously.
- The first hit has less startup lag (frame 6 → 4).
- Hit 2:
- Both variants of the second hit have less startup lag (frame 12 (up)/14 (down) → 7/9).
- However, their total duration remains unchanged giving them more ending lag.
- The upwards second hit deals less knockback (30/60/70/85 (base), 40 (scaling) → 20/30) and its angles have been altered (90°/85°/79° → 70°/80°/60°/40°) making it link into the third hit more reliably.
- The downwards second hit deals less knockback (16 (base), 100 (scaling) → 22/30) and its angles have been altered (105°/80°/70°/50° → 75°/90°/40°/10°) making it link into the third hit more reliably.
- Both variants of the second hit deal less damage (5% → 3%/4%).
- However, this further aids them to connect properly with the third hit.
- Both variants of the second hit have less startup lag (frame 12 (up)/14 (down) → 7/9).
- Hit 3:
- All variants of the third hit have less startup lag (frame 13 (up)/11 (forward)/15 (down) → 8/6/8).
- However, their total duration remains unchanged giving them more ending lag.
- The upwards third hit has decreased base knockback (60 → 30) and the body hitboxes have had their angles altered (60° → 50°/30°) making it link into the fourth hit more reliably.
- The upwards third hit deals less damage (6% → 4%/5%).
- However, this further aids it to connect properly with the fourth hit.
- The forwards third hit's angles have been altered (361° → 30°/25°/20°) now being a semi-spike.
- The forwards third hit now has set knockback (0 (base), 160 (scaling) → 55/60 (set)/100). This allows the move to link into the fourth hit drastically more reliably but removes its KO potential.
- The forwards third hit deals less damage (10% → 4%/5%) which provides no benefit whatsoever due to the move now possessing set knockback.
- The downward third hit no longer consistently meteor smashes (270° → 361°/270°) and has decreased knockback (50 (base), 100 (scaling) → 30/80). This allows the move to link into the fourth hit more reliably but hinders the move's edgeguarding potential.
- The downwards third hit deals much less damage (12% → 4%/5%) which along with the previous change, immensely hinders its edgeguarding potential.
- However, this significantly aids it to connect properly with the fourth hit.
- Altogether, the alterations to the variations of the third hit make it much more reliable but hinders its KO, edgeguarding and tech-chasing potential.
- All variants of the third hit have less startup lag (frame 13 (up)/11 (forward)/15 (down) → 8/6/8).
- Hit 4:
- The upwards fourth hit now has a brand new animation, where Marth does an upward launching slash in a recovering turn, as opposed to a forward hopping more pronounced version of his forward fourth hit.
- The upwards fourth hit has less startup lag (frame 20 → 11).
- However, its total duration remains unchanged giving it more ending lag.
- The upwards fourth hits deals less damage (10% → 6%/8%) without full compensation on its base knockback (40 → 60).
- The forwards fourth hit has less startup lag (frame 23 → 13).
- The forwards fourth hit deals more shield damage (2 → 5).
- The forwards fourth hit deals much less damage (14% → 6%/8%) and its knockback was not fully compensated (15 (base), 120 (scaling) → 50/125).
- The forwards fourth hit has more ending lag (FAF 51 → 56).
- The downwards fourth hit's loop hits have a reduced hitlag multiplier (1x → 0.5x) making them more difficult to escape from.
- The downwards fourth hit's loop hits deal less damage (3% → 2%).
- However, this allows them to connect more reliably.
- The downwards fourth hit's loop hits have a shorter duration (3 frames → 2).
- The downwards fourth hit's final hit no longer deals consistent damage (5% → 3%/5%).
- The downwards fourth hit’s final hit deals more knockback (20 (base), 130 (scaling) → 60/120) improving its tipper's KO potential.
- The downwards fourth hit has more ending lag (FAF 61 → 66).
- Altogether, these changes make Dancing Blade much more reliable and useful as the hits are faster requiring less precision to use, and they have reduced knockback making them link into each other more quickly, reliably and easily while also being more difficult to escape, combined with the removal of crouch cancelling.
- Dolphin Slash:
- Dolphin Slash covers more horizontal distance.
- The changes to shielding improves Dolphin Slash as it no longer makes Marth killer possible to perform due to the removal of light shielding.
- Marth plummets later after using it due to his lower gravity and falling speed.
- Due to his higher air speed and air acceleration, Marth has slightly more control over his trajectory once he is in free fall.
- This notably allows Marth to drift to the edge if he uses it near an edge, improving its safety on stage.
- Marth can now grab ledges while rising from Dolphin Slash if he is facing the ledge.
- Marth no longer loses his double jump if he is hit out of Dolphin Slash.
- Altogether, these changes improve Dolphin Slash's recovery potential.
- Dolphin Slash has more intangibility (frame 5 → 1-5), improving its use as a defensive attack, an escape option or as a panic tool.
- Dolphin Slash has larger hitboxes (3.903u/3.903u/3.903u → 6.5u/6.5u (clean), 4u/4u/3.2u → 5u/5u/4u (late)) giving it more range.
- Additionally, Marth now moves forwards during the aerial version's startup, significantly improving its range.
- The clean hit has a longer duration (frame 5 → 5-6) although the late hit retains its duration.
- The clean hit's sourspot deals more damage (10% → 13%) and knockback (60 (base), 70 (scaling) → 70/68).
- The clean hit has a lower hitlag multiplier (1x → 0.5x).
- The late hit's far hitbox has been moved slightly further along Marth's sword (z offset: 3.5154 → 4.5) which along with its larger hitbox, improves its range.
- Marth no longer grunts when using Dolphin Slash.
- Marth turns around earlier when using a reversed Dolphin Slash (frame 6 → 4).
- This allows Marth to hit opponents behind him with the clean hit, improving its effectiveness against opponents behind Marth.
- This also allows Marth to angle the move backwards at a steeper angle if he does not reverse it.
- However, this also makes it drastically more difficult for Marth to hit opponents in front of him with the clean hit's tipper, hindering its edgeguarding potential.
- The clean hit now uses static hitboxes positioned higher up rather than hitboxes attached to Marth's sword.
- The clean hit's body hitbox has been removed although the previous middle hit's larger hitbox compensates for this.
- The clean hit's sweetspot deals less knockback (80 (base), 70 (scaling) → 70/68).
- Dolphin Slash now suffers from RCO lag.
- Dolphin Slash has slightly more landing lag (34 frames → 35).
- When combined with Marth's slower descent and the fact that it can no longer be edge canceled, this makes the move more punishable if Marth misses it, although Marth's greater aerial mobility during free fall does partially compensate for this.
- Marth is now intangible during the first two frames of counter's counter period.
- Counter's attack has increased intangibility (frames 1-5 → 1-8).
- Counter now deals 1.1x damage of the countered move's damage back with a minimum of 8% instead of 7%.
- Counter has larger hitboxes (3.12u/2.8u/4.4u/4u → 5u/5u/5u/6u/5u).
- Counter has increased knockback scaling (35 → 40).
- Counter has more startup lag with a shorter duration (frame 3-9 → 5-9) and has more ending lag (FAF 36 → 37).
- Critical Hit:
- Marth now has a Final Smash: Critical Hit. Marth points his sword to the sky and charges forward at lightning speeds. If Marth comes in contact with anyone, he will strike them with the Falchion. The strike has immense knockback, and will usually one-hit KO any character. An HP Gauge from Fire Emblem that starts at full health and quickly drops to zero will appear the head of whoever got hit by the move. However, the HP gauge is purely aesthetic and has no effect on gameplay.
For simplicity, if, for example, Marth's blade does 4% damage while the tip does 6%, and the attack has no other hitboxes, it is written as 4%/6%.
|Neutral attack||4%/6%||Slashes Falchion twice in front of himself.|
|Forward tilt||9%/12%||A fast swipe upwards with the Falchion while leaning forward. It has good horizontal reach and decent vertical reach.|
|Up tilt||Clean: 9% (blade), 12% (tip), 8% (body)
Late: 10% (blade), 12% (tip), 9% (body)
|Swings his sword in a large arc above his head, front to back. It has good all around reach with fast startup with small ending lag.|
|Down tilt||9% (blade), 10% (tip), 8% (body)||A quick crouching Falchion poke. Fairly reliable pressure tool against opponents on the ledge. Can also be used to pseudo-crawl.|
|Dash attack||10% (blade), 12% (tip), 9% (body)||A quick upward sweeping diagonal slash. Has slow startup compared to Marth's other attacks with high ending lag.|
|Forward smash||Dragon Killer (ドラゴンキラー)||14%/19%||Rotates body counterclockwise with a strong arc-like swing from his head to the ground. Very fast and long ranged with the knockback of the move being stronger at the tip of the sword.|
|Up smash||Justice Sword (ジャスティスソード)||4% (ground), 14% (blade), 17% (tip)||A quick, direct upward thrust. The weak grounded hit can knock nearby opponents into the main attack. When Marth hits someone at low percentages with his running up smash, it sends his opponent on a bizarre horizontal trajectory with very high base knockback. This is very effective at setting up edgeguard situations at low percentages for an early KO.|
|Down smash||14%/17% (front), 13%/16% (back)||Sweeps his sword on the ground towards front then towards the back. High vertical knockback if tippered, but its long duration makes it a seldom-used move.|
|Neutral aerial||3%/6% (hit 1), 9%/12% (hit 2)||Two horizontal slashes around himself. Both hits connect easily on an airborne opponent. The tip of the second strike has rather high knockback and can KO at high percentages.|
|Forward aerial||10%/13%||Does a forward vertical slash downwards. Although it has fairly low knockback when not tippered, it is very fast in both startup and ending lag. Can easily be done twice in a short hop and is useful for edgeguarding as a wall of pain. It is considered Marth's best aerial and is arguably the best forward air in the game, if not the most versatile.|
|Back aerial||About Face (アッパースイング, Upper Swing)||11%/14%||Slashes the Falchion from bottom to top behind him in an inward swipe. The attack has the unusual property of turning Marth around when used in the air.|
|Up aerial||10%/13%||A forward to back upward Falchion slash in a delayed somersault. Hit from close is as powerful as the tip, being a reliable vertical finisher but from medium distance it is quite weak.|
|Down aerial||12%/14%||A forward to back downward outward sword slash. It meteor smashes powerfully when the tip is connected, but launches opponents horizontally when the blade connects.|
|Forward throw||4%||Grabs and pushes forward, tripping with the leg. Great for tech-chasing and can chaingrab heavyweights or fast-fallers at 0% for up to usually four throws maximum and set up a guaranteed forward smash at 0% on most characters, on some characters it can hit with the tipper for more damage, and on certain characters this combo works up until mid percentages. Can also be used to set up a forward aerial combo.|
|Back throw||4%||Turns around and pulls the enemy over his outstretched leg, tripping them. Similar to down throw, but even weaker knockback wise and is poor for setting up due to high ending lag.|
|Up throw||4%||Powerful upward throw with one arm. This is Marth's only powerful throw and it can KO lighter characters under 200%.|
|Down throw||5%||Throws opponent to the ground. Has extremely low knockback with little KO potential.|
|Floor attack (front)||6%||Sweeps his sword on the ground, front to back.|
|Floor attack (back)||6%||A quick stab to the left followed by a horizontal slash to the right.|
|Floor attack (trip)||5%||Gets up and stabs on one side followed by a horizontal slash on the other side.|
|Edge attack (fast)||8% (blade), 6% (body)||Flips onto ledge with a quick downward diagonal slash.|
|Edge attack (slow)||10%||Slowly gets up and performs a quick horizontal slice.|
|Neutral special||Shield Breaker||Uncharged: 8%/9%; Fully charged: 18% (arm) 20% (hilt), 22% (blade), 24% (tip)||Marth charges up Falchion at chest level before powerfully thrusting it forward. Deals high shield damage when fully charged.|
|Side special||Dancing Blade||Varies (see below)||A sequence of Falchion slashes with several variations based on control stick tilts.|
|Up special||Dolphin Slash||13% (clean), 7% (late sword), 6% (late body)||Marth performs a rapid jumping slash that can be reversed. Has a powerful sweetspot located in the first few frames.|
|Down special||Counter||1.1x (min 8%)||Marth assumes a defensive stance and retaliates against incoming attacks. The power of the counterattack scales with the strength of the attack blocked.|
|Final Smash||Critical Hit||60%||Marth lunges in one direction, attacking the first opponent. Immense knockback, enough to one-hit KO any character on any roofless stage.|
|First Hit (Neutral)||3%/4%||Does a vertical slash, has little knockback: incapable of KOing.|
|Second Hit (Up)||3%/4%||Does an upwards slash. Deals slightly more knockback than the upper slash.|
|Second Hit (Neutral)||3%/4%||Does a stab, has a little more knockback than the first slash.|
|Third Hit (Up)||4%/5%||Does a weak vertical slash.|
|Third Hit (Neutral)||4%/5%||Does a fairly powerful horizontal slash. KOs at around 120%.|
|Third Hit (Down)||4%/5%||Stabs at the ground. Can meteor smash airborne opponents.|
|Fourth Hit (Up)||6%/8%||Does a very powerful upper slash. KOs at around 100%|
|Fourth Hit (Neutral)||6%/8%||Does a very powerful vertical slash. KOs at around 100%|
|Fourth Hit (Down)||2% (hit 1-4), 3%/5% (hit 5)||Does a flurry of lower stabs. Hits 5 times.|
- Marth swings his sword and shouts.
- Warps onto the stage using warp magic with a twirl and unsheathes his sword.
- Up taunt: Points the Falchion in the air with a spark of light emitting from it. Similar to his stance before performing a critical hit in Fire Emblem and identical to his stance when he performs the "Lodestar" technique.
- Side taunt: Slashes his sword twice in front of himself, then sheathes it.
- Down taunt: Twirls his sword, then raises it in front of him saying "みんな、見ていてくれ！," which is Japanese for "Everyone, watch over me!
|Up taunt||Side taunt||Down taunt|
- Closes his eyes, holds a hand to his chest, and silently takes a breath.
- Brushes his hair from his face.
|Pitch||Group chant||Group chant|
- Up: Sheaths his sword and says "今日も生き延びることが出来た。", which translates to: "Today I have risen to survive."
- Left: Turns with pride, spins his sword, then clashes it to the ground and says "今回は僕の勝ちだね?", which translates to: "This time it's my victory isn't it?"
- Right: Poses with the sword in his sheath, stretches out his right arm and says "僕は負ける訳には行かないんだ!", which translates to: "There's no way for me to lose!"
In competitive play
According to the matchup chart, Marth's matchup spread is the fourth highest weighted and unweighted rank. Marth has two soft counters, 9 even matchups, soft counters 10 matchups, counters 8, and hard counters 7. Marth has more even matchups than the other top tier characters, but has the tools to beat almost any character. Marth has a very strong air game, as his forward aerial is helpful in almost any situation, whether it be for camping, edgeguarding, or comboing. His ground game, while not as potent as his air game, is acceptable. His down tilt is fast, strong, and propels him forward. Marth can easily wall out characters like Wario and Pikachu, because of their relatively short ranged attacks and lower KO power, but because of Marth's dependence on edgeguarding, he struggles against characters like Meta Knight. He also has trouble against King Dedede, because of his chain grab, strong recovery, and longevity, forcing Marth to land tippers. Overall, Marth has strong matchups all around, but more even ones than most of the other top tier characters.
- See also: Category:Marth players (SSBB)
- Leon - Known for his extremely aggressive playstyle. 22nd on 2014 SSBBRank.
- Mike Haze - A consistent player during 2008-2014 and arguably the best Marth player in the United States. Formerly ranked 46th on the 2014 SSBBRank.
- Mikeneko - Formerly the best Marth player in the world. Ranked 10th on the 2014 SSBBRank.
- Mr. R - One of Europe's best players. 15th at 2014 SSBBRank.
- NEO - Known for his calculated and patient playstyle. 96th on 2014 SSBBRank.
Tier placement and history
Similarly to Falco, Marth has remained a top tier character even after his transition from Melee. Throughout Brawl's history, Marth has always hovered around the 5th to 7th place positions due to his positive traits as well as his strong representation in tournaments. When Olimar and the Ice Climbers began to rise, Marth's position slipped back to 7th place, with some thinking he would fall further as professionals of characters below him, such as Zero Suit Samus, would discover new innovations in their metagames, while Marth's would remain mostly stagnant due to his simplistic playstyle. However, Marth still did rise back to 5th place for the current Brawl tier list. There are smashers who dispute this placement, stating that Marth is placed far too high; some (such as Keitaro and Mew2King) claim that Marth's nerfs going into Brawl overwhelmed his buffs, and that because his combo ability was completely compromised in the transition, he was a bad character in theory and should be ideally placed around middle tier. Due to these factors, Marth's tier placement is debated and some argue that characters, such as Snake, should be placed higher than him. However, strong tournament results from Marth professionals such as Mr. R and Mikeneko in high-level tournaments such as Apex 2013 have influenced the Brawl Back Room to place Marth at 5th above Falco and Snake.
Role in The Subspace Emissary
Two R.O.B.s activate a Subspace Bomb in a barren battlefield. Marth is seen atop his castle watching helplessly as the robots detonate the bomb. He stands and shines Falchion, prepared to fend off the hundreds of Primids advancing toward the castle. Marth confronts the Primids, descending through the building until he reaches the grounds. There he is ambushed by Meta Knight. During the duel (in the same video sequence), they are attacked from behind by a group of Primids, at which point they simultaneously jump into the air, slicing the Primids in two with their swords. Realizing that they share a common enemy, they join forces to defeat the Primids. After fighting against the Primids, both Meta Knight and Marth aim their attacks at the Ancient Minister, who is carrying another Subspace Bomb. Marth misses with Dolphin Slash, while Meta Knight's wing is ignited by a laser shot from the fleeing Ancient Minister. Ike then shows up and dismantles the Ancient Minister's Subspace Bomb with his trusted Aether move. With the Subspace Bomb destroyed, the trio storm the castle once more.
In the desert, they see a vehicle driving off in the distance. Ike immediately jumps off the cliff to pursue it, followed by Meta Knight. Marth merely scratches the back of his head in disbelief before following them. When they find the vehicle, it transforms into Galleom, and the three fight it. The defeated Galleom falls through unstable ground, where it encounters Lucas and Pokémon Trainer in the Ruined Hall. Now severely weakened after being fought again, it grabs Lucas and the Trainer in an attempt to detonate an emergency Subspace Bomb, but Lucas manages to free himself and Pokémon Trainer from Galleom using PK Thunder, commencing a headfirst freefall. Meta Knight catches Lucas and the unconscious Trainer right before they hit the ground and meets them up with Marth and Ike. When the Halberd crashes the Great Fox into a mountain, Marth is unable to catch up with Meta Knight, who is climbing the mountain. Later, the Ice Climbers fall down and befriend Marth, Ike, Lucas, and Pokémon Trainer, only to be rained on by Shadow Bugs from the Halberd above. Mario, Pit, Kirby, Link and Yoshi come to aid them in fighting off the Primids that were dropped. After the battle, the Halberd (now under control of Meta Knight, Snake, Lucario, Zelda, Peach, Fox, Mr. Game & Watch, and Falco) and the Falcon Flyer (carrying Captain Falcon, Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Olimar, Samus, Pikachu and R.O.B.) land to pick them up.
Marth and friends destroy the Subspace Gunship (though the Halberd was downed in the process). They enter Subspace and encounter Tabuu, who turns them all into trophies. Fortunately he, and some of the others, are revived by King Dedede, Luigi, and Ness, while the rest are revived by Kirby. Marth helps the heroes in the showdown against Tabuu.
- The Battlefield Fortress
- The Wilds (Part I)
- Entrance to Subspace
- The Great Maze - if he's rescued in Subspace (Part I)
The following stickers can only be used by Marth or Ike:
- Ninian: [Arm, Leg] Attack + 6
- Lilina: [Leg] Attack + 5
- Mist: [Slash] Attack + 8
- Deke: [Slash] Attack + 9
- Eirika: [Slash] Attack +17
- Ike (Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn): [Slash] Attack +27
- Rutoga: [Slash] Resistance +12
- Ashnard: [Slash] Resistance +34
- Shiida: [Specials: Direct] Attack + 7
- Greil: [Throwing] Attack +14
- Marth: [Weapon] Attack +19
- Micaiah: [Weapon] Attack +21
- Ike:(Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance) [Weapon] Attack +23
- Eliwood: Flame Resistance +33
In Event Matches
- Event 31: The Ultimate Bodyguard: Marth must defend Zelda and defeat two Ganondorfs on Castle Siege. Zelda remains in her crouching position until the third background change, where she'll transform into Sheik and assist Marth.
- Event 34: All-Star Battle Melee: Marth is one of the opponents fought in this event. All opponents are newcomers from Super Smash Bros. Melee.
- Co-Op Event 11: The Great Remodeling Battle: Luigi and Peach must fight Marth and Ike and collect 300 coins without destroying any of the breakable pillars on Luigi's Mansion.
- Co-Op Event 13: Blades of the Quick and Mighty: Marth and Ike must defeat Link, Meta Knight, and Ganondorf on Temple.
- Co-Op Event 21: The True All-Star Battle: Both players select a character and take on the entire roster on Battlefield.
- The prince of Altea, in whose veins the blood of heroes runs. He and a small group of stalwarts fought to free Altea after it was invaded by the kingdom of Doluna and the dark dragon, Medeus. With his divine sword, Falchion, he fought and defeated Medeus. However, Altea was then invaded by King Hardin of Akaneia and eventually destroyed.
- The Prince of Altea, in whose veins the blood of heroes runs. He and a small group of stalwarts fought to free Altea after it was invaded by the kingdom of Doluna and the dark dragon, Medeus. With his divine sword, Falchion, he fought and defeated Medeus. However, Altea was then invaded by King Hardin of Akaneia and eventually destroyed.
- : Fire Emblem (Japan Only)
- Critical Hit
- Marth's Final Smash. He thrusts his sword skyward, then rushes to meet his targeted enemy with furious speed. The blow he strikes is so powerful that his foe is instantly launched off the screen. As in Fire Emblem, a window appears that shows the character's hit points dropping rapidly to zero--but this is just for effect. Smash Bros. does not use a hit-point system.
- : Super Smash Bros. Brawl
- Marth's back air turns his whole body around to face the other way; it is the only aerial in the game to do this.
- Marth is the first unlockable character to join the player's party in the Subspace Emissary, though he is not the first to be played, as Ness is temporarily available in a previous stage.
- While it can only happen on a custom stage, Marth's sword trail animations on his aerial attacks will only play if done at the peak or near the peak of his jump and midair jump, when attacking after or before the peak of a jump Marth's sword will simply glow and leave no trail, except on his up aerial. This also happens to Ike.
- Marth is the only character who speaks Japanese in the English-language version of Brawl. This is so because the only Fire Emblem games he appeared in were only released in Japan at the time of Brawl's release. However, Kirby shouts "Purin!", Jigglypuff's Japanese name, when using Rollout after copying Jigglypuff.
- Marth, Ike, Bowser, and Meta Knight can all perform the floor glitch.
- Brawl is the only game where Marth cannot use his default costume in Team Battles.
- Marth, alongside Bowser, are the only 2 characters to have a Melee song for their Character Roll Call theme. In Marth's case, his theme is Fire Emblem (Melee).
- Dengeki Playstation Vol. 414 (March 28, 2008) page 117: "Target Lockon!!" (ターゲット・ロックオン!!)
- Marth's Smash DOJO!! page
- Marth Character Guides on SmashBoards
- Marth's hitbox size of each of his moves
- Marth's Moves - History Behind Super Smash Bros. Brawl, by CrappyCaptureDevice
|Fighters in Super Smash Bros. Brawl|
|Veterans||Bowser · Captain Falcon · Donkey Kong · Falco · Fox · Ganondorf · Ice Climbers · Jigglypuff · Kirby · Link · Luigi · Mario · Marth · Mr. Game & Watch · Ness · Peach · Pikachu · Samus · Yoshi · Zelda / Sheik|
|Newcomers||Diddy Kong · Ike · King Dedede · Lucario · Lucas · Meta Knight · Olimar · Pit · Pokémon Trainer (Charizard · Ivysaur · Squirtle) · R.O.B. · Snake · Sonic · Toon Link · Wario · Wolf · (Zero Suit Samus)|
|Fire Emblem universe|
|Fighters||Marth (SSBM · SSBB · SSB4 · SSBU) · Roy (SSBM · SSB4 · SSBU) · Ike (SSBB · SSB4 · SSBU) · Lucina (SSB4 · SSBU) · Robin (SSB4 · SSBU) · Corrin (SSB4 · SSBU) · Chrom (SSBU) · Byleth (SSBU)|
|Assist Trophies||Lyn · Black Knight · Tiki|
|Stages||Castle Siege · Arena Ferox · Coliseum · Garreg Mach Monastery|
|Trophies, Stickers and Spirits||Trophies (SSBM · SSBB · SSB4) · Stickers · Spirits|
|Music||Brawl · SSB4 · Ultimate|
|Masterpieces||Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light · Fire Emblem: Mystery of the Emblem|