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Palutena (SSBU)

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This article is about Palutena's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. For the character in other contexts, see Palutena.
in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Palutena SSBU.png
Universe Kid Icarus
Other playable appearance in SSB4

Availability Unlockable
Final Smash Black Hole Laser
Tier S- (17)

Palutena (パルテナ, Palutena) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. She was officially revealed on June 12th, 2018 alongside fellow Kid Icarus representatives Pit and Dark Pit, as well as the rest of the veterans. Palutena is classified as Fighter #54.

Brandy Kopp and Aya Hisakawa reprise their roles as the voice of Palutena in the English and Japanese versions of the game. In addition to their portrayals being re-purposed from Super Smash Bros. 4, they also provide new Palutena's Guidance conversations for every veteran not present in SSB4, the downloadable fighters of SSB4, the base roster newcomers of Ultimate, and Piranha Plant.

Palutena is ranked 17th out of 82 on the current tier list, placing her in the S- tier. This is a drastic improvement over her 44th out of 54 placement in SSB4.

How to unlock[edit]

Complete one of the following:

  • Play VS. matches, with Palutena being the last character to be unlocked.
  • Clear Classic Mode with Kirby or any character in his unlock tree, being the last character unlocked after Lucas.
  • Have Palutena join the player's party in World of Light.

Palutena must then be defeated on Palutena's Temple (the Ω form is used in World of Light).


Palutena is a tall middleweight. Her walking speed, dashing speed, air acceleration and gravity are above-average; her air acceleration, in particular, is the 5th highest in the game. Palutena also has relatively high jumps, although her traction and falling speed are both merely average, while her air speed is below-average. Thanks to her attributes, Palutena's overall mobility is excellent, even in spite of her aerial mobility being a bit slower compared to her grounded mobility.

Palutena has a dynamic, well-rounded moveset. She has both excellent combo potential and good zoning tools, which allow her to be effective when fighting offensively or defensively. Her staff counts as a disjointed hitbox and she has two projectiles in her moveset as part of her special moves, meaning she can apply safe pressure from a distance and force approaching opponents off her. Her projectiles are unique by the fact that they are completely unconventional. Her aerial-based moveset, speed and versatility means she can easily overwhelm opponents and quickly rack up damage.

Palutena's ground attacks are generally the weakest part of her moveset, but they can be useful. Her neutral attack possesses decent range, whereas her neutral infinite is a reliable damage racking option that can also function as a situational KO option at very high percentages while near the edge. Palutena's dash attack is very fast, grants her partial invincibility, and its clean hitbox enables it to function as a situational KO option at very high percentages. Her tilt attacks are somewhat situational due to their lagginess, but have their own individual perks. Forward tilt has long-lasting hitboxes that enable it to intercept approaches and floor recoveries, while its second hit is strong enough to KO at very high percentages while near the edge. Down tilt is a useful 2 frame punish that semi-spikes grounded opponents and launches aerial opponents vertically, thus enabling Palutena to edgeguard reliably afterward. Lastly, up tilt has the fastest startup among her tilts, it can initiate aerial pressure, and it is even a serviceable KO option at very high percentages.

Palutena's grounded offense is further supplemented by her strong grab game: her grabs are quick and have respectable ranges, while each of her throws vary from being decent to useful. Palutena's down throw is a reliable combo starter, since it can combo into each of her aerials, and even has KO confirms at high percentages. Her back throw is her strongest throw, being capable of KOing at around 130% while near the edge. Palutena's forward and up throws are much less useful in comparison, but have their own perks regardless. Forward throw has a KO confirm into Explosive Flame at high percentages, whereas up throw is decent for launching opponents into the air in order to initiate aerial pressure safely.

Palutena's smash attacks are very strong KO options thanks to their considerable power and very long ranges. Up smash has a very long-lasting hitbox and covers a lot of vertical range directly in front of Palutena; it can be used to KO opponents in the air and even intercept air dodges due to how long the hitbox lasts. Her forward and down smashes are similar, both in their damage output and the fact that they have a wind effect to move opponents away from Palutena if they are just outside of the move’s hitbox.

The strongest part of Palutena's moveset, however, is her air game. Her aerial attacks are each useful in regard to comboing or KOing; despite each of her aerials having rather high ending lag, they compensate for this by having very low landing lag and generous autocancel windows, making them very safe on shield. Her neutral aerial is a very fast and safe move, being Palutena's best combo tool by far as it combos into her other aerial attacks (including itself) until fairly high percentages, while also having KO potential at very high percentages. Her up aerial is an extremely good juggling tool capable of KOing while near top blast zone at around 100% (even on heavyweights), with its fairly large, long-lasting hitbox making it difficult to avoid. Her back aerial, like her dash attack, grants invincibility on Palutena's shield. It has the strongest knockback of any of her aerials, making it one of Palutena's best KO options, especially when used as a reverse aerial rushed follow up from down throw. Her forward aerial, while not quite as strong, is a good combo finisher that is also useful for edgeguarding, and is even capable of KOing at very high percentages while near the horizontal blast zones. Although down aerial is generally considered to be Palutena's least useful aerial, it is a guaranteed meteor smash against airborne opponents.

Additionally, Palutena's special moves each have utility, most prominently for zoning. Explosive Flame, formerly one of her custom moves in Super Smash Bros. 4, is her side special attack and is useful at forcing opponents into the air, as well as for securing KOs while near the upper blast zone at higher percentages. Palutena's neutral special attack, Autoreticle, is not quite as useful as Explosive Flame, yet it is another projectile that can apply long-ranged pressure safely and rack up damage. Her up special move, Warp, is useful for achieving a more favorable stage position; when coupled with its invincibility frames and Palutena's high jumps, Warp is an extremely useful recovery tool. Palutena's down special move, unlike in SSB4, consists of 2 moves: Counter activates against melee attacks, whereas Reflect Barrier activates against reflectable projectiles at either close range or from a distance. Lastly, several of Palutena's moves, such as her tilt attacks and aerial attacks, inflict additional shield damage; as a result, Palutena can pressure opponents consistently and reliably, especially since her forward and back aerials can autocancel with a short hop fast fall.

Despite having considerable strengths, Palutena also has a number of noticeable weaknesses. Her most glaring problem is her mediocre ground game: barring her dash attack, the remainder of her grounded attacks come out on frame 8 or later, and almost all of her moves either have high startup (smash attacks and down tilt), punishable ending lag (forward, back and down aerials and smash attacks), long durations (her tilt attacks), or all three (forward tilt and special moves). Although Palutena's overall frame data is quite faster than it was in SSB4, she can still be rendered very vulnerable if her attacks miss or if the opponent evades and/or blocks them.

Although a number of Palutena's moves have the potential to KO at reasonable percentages, she can still struggle to score KOs due to her options being either somewhat risky or situational. Her smash attacks are very punishable due to their significantly high amounts of overall lag to offsetting their impressive power. Explosive Flame and, to a lesser extent, back aerial are also easily punishable if whiffed due to their ending lag. Up aerial relies on Palutena being underneath her opponent. Furthermore, while Palutena's recovery is decent in its distance, Warp leaves her helpless and lacks a hitbox to protect her; when combined with the fact that Palutena is a tall character, her recovery can be exploited easily by opponents who know how to intercept Warp.

Despite this, Palutena is generally considered at worst a high tier character due to her versatility, well-roundedness and relatively easy combo game. Her lack of overwhelming weaknesses means that there are few opponents she struggles against, and thus her representation at tournaments has generally been excellent thanks to players like Nairo maining her and achieving noteworthy results.

Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4[edit]

Palutena had been considered a lower end mid tier character in Super Smash Bros. 4; by the end of the game's lifespan, she was ranked at the very bottom of the mid tier. Despite receiving buffs via game updates, she had poor tournament representation throughout the game's lifespan regardless. In the transition to Ultimate, she has been drastically buffed, to the point where she is considered to be one of the most improved returning characters, similarly to the changes Pichu received.

In addition to the universal mobility buffs, nearly the entirety of Palutena's moveset has been improved in various ways, many of which are substantial. Starting with her ground game, forward tilt, having previously been considered the worst of its kind, has less startup and ending lag, connects both hits reliably, and has increased power; likewise, up tilt has increased power and connects more reliably, while down tilt has a longer duration and more favorable angles of knockback. Dash attack deals more damage and has much less ending lag, allowing Palutena to better take advantage of the invincibility at the front of the move. Furthermore, all her smash attacks have less ending lag, forward smash and down smash have stronger windboxes, and up smash has a much longer duration, allowing it to catch airborne opponents more effectively.

Palutena's aerial game has been further strengthened, now being one of the most efficient aspects of her moveset. The most notable example is neutral aerial, which has larger hitboxes, connects more reliably, consistently launches opponents in the direction Palutena is facing, and heavily benefits from the universally decreased landing lag on aerial attacks. As such, it has become one of Palutena's most reliable approach options, and more infamously, it can combo into itself multiple times to rack up large amounts of damage, as well as other aerials. Forward aerial and down aerial both deal more damage without compensation on their knockback, with the latter also having a longer duration (previously lasting only 1 frame).

Back aerial has increased knockback and no longer possesses a sourspot. Additionally, up aerial deals slightly more damage and auto-cancels much earlier, no longer failing to auto-cancel in a full hop. These changes amount to noticeably improving Palutena's KO ability overall, allowing her to close stocks better at high percentages with her safer options, which is complemented by their lower landing lag. As for her grab game, her throws have received few changes, but more notably, back throw KOs more effectively near edges due to launching opponents at a lower angle.

Moreover, Palutena's special moveset, previously considered among the most situational in SSB4, has undergone an overhaul with considerable improvements. Instead of having Reflect Barrier as her side special and Counter as her down special, both moves have been merged into her down special, which triggers Counter or Reflect Barrier depending on whether the attack it blocks is reflectable or not, while her new side special is Explosive Flame, previously one of her custom neutral specials in SSB4. This effectively gives Palutena an additional move, and makes her the only character alongside the Mii Fighters to retain a former custom move.

In addition to this, all of her returning special moves have been buffed. Autoreticle's shots are faster and deal both more damage and knockback, while Explosive Flame is likewise considerably stronger (KOing opponents reliably at high percents), has much less ending lag, and can be summoned at two different distances depending on control stick input. This greatly improves Palutena's zoning capabilities, allowing her to threaten opponents from diverse positions, and gives her a more defined strength of long ranged attacks that have excellent utility. Lastly, Warp grants slightly more intangibility, and from her down special, Counter has less startup (no longer being the slowest in the game), a longer window, and less ending lag especially upon a successful counterattack, in addition to dealing more knockback, while Reflect Barrier has a much higher damage multiplier on reflected projectiles.

In spite of her myriad of buffs, Palutena did still receive some notable nerfs. Although her full neutral attack connects more reliably, the first hit can no longer be used for jab cancel setups at high percents due to its altered knockback. Up tilt has fewer active frames, making it slightly worse as an anti-air attack, while back aerial's invincibility is slower and shorter, preventing it from blocking opposing attacks as consistently, and up aerial has more startup. Additionally, as Reflect Barrier can no longer be triggered on command, it is less effective for preemptively deterring projectile use. However, these nerfs are largely outweighed by the larger and more significant amount of buffs she has received, while other nerfs, such as the increased ending lag on her grabs and reduced shield damage on her projectiles, have also affected the rest of the cast.

Palutena's buffs have improved her standing in Ultimate's metagame by a large margin, with a huge representation at all levels of play, and she has consistently attained high placements in tournaments thanks to players such as Nairo, Gen, and Zinoto. Additionally, while Palutena has received some noticeable nerfs in updates, her nerfs were not as drastic as other prominent characters in the metagame since the game's release, such as Peach, Pichu, and Olimar. As a result, she is widely considered a top tier character by the Smash community, as well as one of the best characters in the game.


  • Change As with all veterans returning from Super Smash Bros. 4, Palutena's model has a more subdued color scheme, now more closely resembling her appearance in Kid Icarus: Uprising. Her chiton and armor feature simple detailing, and her face appears more realistic and expressive.
  • Change Palutena's sidestep now causes a visible warping effect when she disappears.
  • Change Palutena is more emotive as she now smiles consistently rather than frowning.
  • Change Palutena's skirt now has independent physics.
  • Change Palutena's shielding animation is slightly altered.
  • Change The golden doors in Palutena's on-screen appearance now disappear without the transparency effects.


  • Buff Like all characters, Palutena's jumpsquat animation takes 3 frames to complete (down from 5).
  • Buff Palutena walks slightly faster (1.21 → 1.271).
  • Buff Palutena runs faster (1.888 → 2.077).
    • Buff Her initial dash speed is much faster (1.5 → 2.035).
  • Buff Palutena's air speed is slightly faster (0.91 → 1).
  • Buff Palutena's max additional air acceleration is higher (0.1 → 0.105).
  • Change Palutena's falling speed and fast falling speed are higher (1.4 → 1.55 and 2.24 → 2.48 respectively).
  • Buff Palutena's gravity is higher (0.105 → 0.12). In combination with her faster falling speed, this improves her vertical mobility, while not affecting her vertical endurance due to gravity no longer affecting vertical knockback between 70 and 110 degrees.
  • Buff Forward roll has less ending lag (FAF 31 → 30).
  • Nerf Forward roll grants less intangibility (frames 4-17 → 4-15).
  • Nerf Back roll has more startup with less intangibility (frames 4-17 → 5-16), and more ending lag (FAF 31 → 35).
  • Buff Spot dodge has less ending lag (FAF 28 → 26).
  • Nerf Spot dodge grants less intangibility (frames 3-18 → 3-17).
  • Buff Air dodge grants more intangibility (frames 3-28 → 3-30).
  • Nerf Air dodge has significantly more ending lag (FAF 34 → 50).
  • Buff Palutena's traction is higher (0.068 → 0.106).

Ground attacks[edit]

  • Neutral attack:
    • Change The first hit has an altered animation. Palutena swings her staff downwards instead of jabbing it forward.
    • Buff The first hit and neutral infinite's finisher have less ending lag (FAF 26 → 25 (hit 1), 43 → 40 (finisher)).
    • Buff The first hit transitions into the neutral infinite faster (frame 15 → 11).
    • Buff The first hit has altered angles to keep opponents closer to Palutena (80° → 361°/180°), and has gained a hitstun modifier of 4, allowing it to lock opponents and connect better into the infinite.
    • Buff The infinite has a lower hitlag multiplier (1.2× → 0.5×) and SDI multiplier (1× → 0.4×), a different launch angle to keep grounded opponents closer to Palutena (60°/110° → 361°), and a much larger hitbox (3.5 → 6u). This allows it to connect much more effectively, and rack up more damage overall despite each hit dealing slightly less damage (0.8% → 0.6%).
    • Nerf The first hit has a shorter hitbox duration (frames 8-10 → 8-9).
    • Nerf The first hit deals less knockback (30 base/60 scaling → 25/20 base/20 scaling), removing its guaranteed jab cancel setups from Smash 4, despite its lower ending lag and additional hitstun.
    • Change The first hit has a higher hitlag multiplier (0.5× → 1.6×).
    • Change The infinite has gained a shieldstun multiplier of 7×. This allows it to lock opponents into their shields between each hit, and thus pressure them more effectively, but also allows them to cancel shieldstun and punish Palutena more easily if they shield 10 hits or more.
  • Change Forward tilt and up tilt have flashier motion effects.
  • Forward tilt:
    • Buff Forward tilt has less startup (frame 17, 25 → 14, 24) and ending lag (FAF 68 → 60).
    • Buff The first hit no longer has a sourspot (6%/4% → 6%), and the second hit deals higher, consistent damage (6%/4% → 7%), as well as more knockback (43 base/100 scaling → 78/80), allowing it to KO at around 130% near the edge.
    • Buff The first hit has different angles (48° → 90°/45° (clean), 285°/100° (mid), 20°/85° (late)), set knockback (43 base/65 scaling → 25/45 set/100 scaling, 25/40/100, 35/30/100) that is weight-independent, a lower hitlag multiplier (1× → 0.8×), and it can no longer be SDIed (1× → 0×). These changes allow it to connect much more reliably into the second hit, regardless of the opponent's percent.
    • Buff The second hit has larger hitboxes (4.1u/2.8u → 4.8u/3.9u).
    • Buff Palutena's right arm is now intangible for the duration of the hitboxes.
    • Nerf The move has a shorter hitbox duration by one frame (frames 17-24/25-39 → 14-23/24-35).
    • Change The second hit launches at a slightly different angle (361° → 40°).
  • Up tilt:
    • Buff Up tilt has less startup lag (frame 10 → 8) and a shorter total duration (FAF 68 → 56).
    • Buff It has lower hitlag multipliers (1× → 0.5× (looping hits), 2× → 1.5× (last hit)), and the looping hits have a faster rehit rate (5 → 3), causing the move to execute noticeably faster.
    • Buff The last hit deals higher, consistent damage (2.5%/1.5% → 4.5%), with knockback not fully compensated (60 base/195 scaling → 75/136), slightly improving its KO potential.
    • Nerf The looping portion has a shorter duration (frames 10-38 (looping hits)/40-41 (last hit) → 8-22/24-25), and thus hits five times instead of six before the last hit, despite its faster rehit rate. This increases the move's ending lag by five frames, as its total duration was not fully compensated.
      • Buff However, the looping hits deal more damage (1.2% → 1.4%), and alongside the last hit's increased damage, the move's total output is still higher (9.7% → 11.5%).
    • Change The last hit's hitbox was moved more upwards (Y offset: 19u/13u → 23u/17u). This improves its vertical range, but causes it to have a blindspot and makes it harder to hit opponents on the ground.
  • Down tilt:
    • Buff Down tilt has a longer hitbox duration (frames 14-24 → 14-27), making it even more effective for 2 frame punishes.
    • Buff It launches grounded opponents at a lower angle (361° → 35°), improving its edgeguarding and KO abilities near the edge. It also launches aerial opponents at a higher angle (70° → 75°), improving its combo potential when used to catch landings and hit ledge-hanging opponents.
    • Buff Some of its hitboxes are larger and extend farther, giving it more range.
  • Dash attack:
    • Buff Dash attack has significantly less ending lag (FAF 52 → 41).
    • Buff It deals more damage (9% → 11% (clean), 5% → 7% (late)), although with its knockback compensated (70 base/90 scaling → 71/76 (clean), 60/70 → 61/56 (late)).
    • Change Its invincibility starts one frame later with its duration compensated (frames 4-15 → 5-16).
    • Nerf Adding to this, its invincibility has been noticeably worsened as Palutena's body is no longer invincible for the entire duration of the move. It now only grants her upper body invincibility between frames 5-6 with only her arm having invincibility for the remainder duration.
    • Change It causes Palutena's shield to glow, indicating its hitbox.
  • Forward smash:
    • Buff Forward smash has less ending lag (FAF 67 → 64).
    • Buff The hitboxes have a longer duration (frame 18-19 → 18-20), with the windboxes having a shorter duration instead (frames 20-31 → 21-31).
    • Buff The hitboxes have slightly more knockback scaling (97/96 → 100/102), while the windboxes have more set knockback (40 → 60 (clean), 26 → 35 (late)), improving the move's KO potential.
  • Up smash:
    • Buff Up smash has less ending lag (FAF 68 → 64).
    • Buff It has a longer hitbox duration (frames 18-26 → 18-35), now lasting twice as long as before, although with a weaker late hit during frames 31-35. This allows it to punish dodges and landings a lot more efficiently.
    • Buff The mid and high hitboxes deal more knockback (55 base/85 scaling → 58/89 (mid), 55/87 → 62/92 (high)) and are larger (2.5u → 2.8u).
    • Change It uses a magic effect instead of a normal one.
  • Down smash:
    • Buff Down smash has less ending lag (FAF 72 → 69).
    • Buff The sweetspot has more base knockback (40 → 52), improving its KO potential.
    • Buff Its hitboxes are larger (2.5u → 3.7u (clean), 4u → 6u (late), 8u → 9u (windboxes)).
    • Buff The windboxes have more horizontal range (Z offset: 22u → 24u) and more set knockback (30 → 55), making them more effective for disrupting opponents.
    • Change The clean hit has a higher hitlag multiplier (1× → 1.4×), while the late hit has a lower multiplier (1× → 0.85×).

Aerial attacks[edit]

  • Buff All aerials have less landing lag (20 frames → 12 (neutral), 12 → 9 (forward), 16 → 10 (back), 24 → 14 (up), 18 → 11 (down).
  • Neutral aerial:
    • Buff Neutral aerial has lower hitlag multipliers (1× → 0.5× (looping hits), 2× → 1.5× (last hit)), and the looping hits have a faster rehit rate (5 → 4), causing the move to execute noticeably faster.
    • Buff It has larger hitboxes (3.4u → 4.2u (looping hits), 11u → 11.5u (last hit)), improving its utility for approaching.
      • Nerf However, the last hit has a smaller hitbox against aerial opponents (11.5u → 9.8u).
    • Buff The looping hits have more set knockback (20 → 65/80 (hit 1, grounded opponents only), 65 (hits 2-6)), which in combination with the move's landing lag allows them to combo into several other moves, including an up aerial at high percents as a KO setup, and to be used for drag-down setups. However, the penultimate hit has a hitstun modifier of -13 (giving it roughly the same hitstun as the Smash 4 looping hits), so only the first five hits are effective for these purposes.
    • Buff The last hit comes out faster (frame 31 → 29).
      • Nerf However, the move's total duration remains unchanged, increasing its ending lag.
    • Buff The last hit always sends opponents in the direction Palutena is facing. Combined with her faster dash speed and the move's lower landing lag, this allows it to combo into itself several times at low percents, greatly improving her damage racking ability.
    • Nerf The last hit deals less knockback (30 base/180 scaling → 35/155). While this slightly improves its combo potential at low percents, it more drastically hinders its KO potential at high percents.
    • Change Due to the looping hits' faster rehit rate, the move hits seven times instead of six. However, its damage values have been redistributed (1.7% (hits 1-5) → 1.4% (hits 1-6), 5% → 5.1% (last hit)), leaving its total damage unchanged.
    • Change The first hit no longer has set knockback against aerial opponents.
    • Change The beginning of the animation is slightly different. Palutena now spins her staff by knocking the lower part of it instead of letting it spin on its own.
  • Forward aerial:
    • Buff Forward aerial deals more damage (9% → 10%) with no compensation on knockback, improving its KO potential near the edge.
  • Back aerial:
    • Buff Back aerial no longer has a sourspot (12%/9% → 12%), and has slightly more knockback scaling (92 → 95), improving its KO potential.
    • Nerf It gains invincibility later and for a shorter duration (frames 3-10 → 7-10).
      • Nerf Adding to this, the move no longer grants Palutena's upper body invincibility for the entire duration (along with no longer granting any invincibility to her right arm). Instead, Palutena's upper body is only granted invincibility on frame 7 with only her arm and shield gaining invincibility for the remainder of the invincibility duration.
    • Change It causes Palutena's shield to glow, indicating its hitbox.
  • Up aerial:
    • Buff Up aerial auto-cancels significantly earlier (frame 64 → 42), doing so in a full hop.
    • Buff The looping hits have a lower hitlag multiplier (0.8× → 0.6×) and a faster rehit rate (5 → 3). As a result, the move executes noticeably faster, and hits six times instead of five, increasing its total damage (9% → 10%).
    • Change The last hit comes out faster (frame 25 → 24). However, this is compensated by the multi-hits of up aerial having a shorter duration meaning the amount of startup remains the same.
      • Nerf However, the move's total duration remains unchanged, increasing its ending lag.
    • Nerf The move has more startup, with the looping hits having a shorter duration (frames 8-23 → 10-22).
  • Down aerial:
    • Buff Down aerial has a longer hitbox duration (frame 10 → 10-11).
    • Buff It deals more damage (9% → 11%) with no compensation on knockback, making it a stronger meteor smash.
    • Buff The meteor hitbox is slightly larger (4u → 4.2u).

Throws and other attacks[edit]

  • Grabs:
    • Buff Pivot grab has more range (Z2 offset: -17.4u → -18.9u).
    • Nerf All grabs have more ending lag (FAF 32 → 40 (standing), 40 → 48 (dash), 40 → 43 (pivot)).
    • Nerf Standing and dash grab have less range, especially the former (Z2 offset: 11.4u → 9.4u (standing), 13.7u → 13.1u (dash)).
    • Nerf Dash and pivot grabs have more startup (frame 9 → 10 (dash), 10 → 11 (pivot)).
  • Pummel:
    • Buff Pummel deals more hitlag (5 frames → 14), but has significantly less startup (frame 8 → 1) and ending lag (FAF 23 → 7), shortening its duration.
    • Nerf It deals much less damage (3.1% → 1.3%).
    • Change Palutena pummels the opponent by holding her staff vertically instead of horizontally.
  • Back throw:
    • Buff Due to the Sakurai angle being lower against aerial opponents in Ultimate (45° → 38°), back throw KOs more effectively near edges.
  • Down throw:
    • Nerf Down throw triggers a hitlag effect on both Palutena and the opponent for 7 frames prior to release, rather than inflicting 5 frames of hitlag on the opponent upon release, and has more knockback scaling (25 → 30). This worsens its combo potential beyond low percents.
      • Buff However, it has less ending lag to compensate (FAF 50 → 46), and launches at a slightly higher angle (70° → 73°), which combined with Palutena's faster jumpsquat and jump speed slightly improves its combo potential at low percents nevertheless.
  • Edge attack:
    • Buff Edge attack deals more damage (7% → 9%).

Special moves[edit]

  • Autoreticle:
    • Buff Autoreticle's shots are faster (frame 29/35/41 → 25/31/37).
    • Buff The shots deals more damage (2.9% → 3.5%) and knockback (20 base/42 scaling → 40/41), making them more effective for disrupting approaches. The changes now give the move a chance of tripping opponents.
    • Nerf The shots have received negative shield damage (0 → -1.7), effectively dealing around half their usual damage to shields.
    • Nerf The changes to locking remove the projectile's situational utility for starting combos.
    • Change Autoreticle's reticle is red instead of green. Additionally, Palutena illuminates her staff's orb with a blue light instead of a yellow one.
  • Explosive Flame:
    • Buff Explosive Flame, previously one of Palutena's custom neutral specials, is now her side special. Since Reflect Barrier has been merged into her down special, she has effectively gained an additional move. This provides Palutena with another long-ranged attack option.
    • Buff It has significantly less ending lag (FAF 89 → 72).
    • Buff It deals considerably more damage (0.8% → 1.5% (hits 1-6), 4.2% → 5.5% (hit 7); 9% → 14.5% total) without compensation on knockback. This turns it into a much more effective finisher, KOing opponents from ground level at around 135% if all hits connect.
    • Buff It can be unleashed at two different distances away from Palutena depending on whether the control stick is tilted or tapped, improving its zoning ability.
    • Buff The looping hits have a lower SDI multiplier (1× → 0.4×).
    • Nerf It has received negative shield damage (0 → -0.7 (hits 1-6), -2.7 (hit 7)), effectively dealing around half its usual damage to shields.
    • Change The last hit has a higher hitlag multiplier (1× → 1.5×).
  • Warp:
    • Buff Warp has one more frame of intangibility (frames 16-31 → 16-32).
    • Change It has a more stylish appearance.
  • Counter and Reflect Barrier:
    • Buff Reflect Barrier has been merged with Counter; By default, Counter activates upon blocking an attack, but if it is a reflectable projectile, Reflect Barrier activates instead, akin to King K. Rool's Gut Check and Joker's Tetrakarn / Makarakarn. This allows her to respond to a larger variety of attacks using only one move, while also freeing up her side special for an additional move.
    • Buff The move has less startup with a longer counter window (frames 10-31 → 7-34), less ending lag (FAF 75 → 71), and grants intangibility earlier (frames 10-16 → 6-12).
    • Buff Upon activation, Counter has significantly less ending lag (FAF 56 → 37), as does Reflect Barrier compared to the previous side special (FAF 56 → 35), and the latter also has immediate startup (frame 8 → 1).
    • Buff Counter has more base knockback (40/20 → 50/30), with only the sweetspot having less knockback scaling (75 → 70), making it more consistent and improving its KO potential near edges.
    • Buff Projectiles reflected by Reflect Barrier have a much higher damage multiplier (1.17× → 1.4×).
    • Nerf Reflect Barrier has a shorter duration (frames 9-66 → 1-42), and no longer possesses an offensive hitbox.
    • Nerf Palutena can no longer directly access Reflect Barrier. As a result, she can no longer use its windbox on command to gimp opponents, or deter projectile use with the barrier's longer duration.
    • Change Palutena closes her eyes instead of showing a angry look upon activating the move. Additionally, she no longer shouts "Counter" until she successfully counters a melee attack. Counter also glows blue instead of yellow.
  • Black Hole Laser:
    • Buff Black Hole Laser produces a larger black hole and a wider laser, making the attack harder to avoid.
    • Nerf The final hit has less knockback scaling (135 (trapped)/105 (collateral) → 127/97), reducing its KO potential.

Update history[edit]

Palutena received a mix of buffs, nerfs and a single glitch fix via game updates, but was nerfed slightly overall. Update 2.0.0 made Warp safer to recover with, and reduced neutral aerial's hitlag, making it harder to SDI. In 3.0.0, however, she has been affected by the universal reduction of shield damage for projectiles. As a result, Autoreticle and Explosive Flame are less effective for shield pressure when used in conjunction.

Update 7.0.0 granted Palutena a mix of buffs and nerfs, but nerfed her overall: while down smash and up tilt's last hit are stronger, neutral aerial's last hit has less range and down throw's increased knockback worsened its combo potential. Update 11.0.0 worsened the safety of both dash attack and forward aerial by increasing their ending lag and landing lag, respectively. In addition, her standing grab's range was shortened noticeably, slightly hinders her grab game.

Overall, Palutena fares slightly worse than she did at Ultimate's launch, but remains one of the most viable characters in the game.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 2.0.0

  • Change Reduced hitlag on neutral aerial(1×/2× (hit 1-6/7) → 0.5×/1.5×, allowing it to execute faster.
  • Buff Palutena can grab ledges more easily during Warp.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.0.0

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 7.0.0

  • Buff Overall shield size has been increased.
  • Buff Up tilt's last hit deals more damage (2.5% → 4.5%) with knockback not fully compensated (60 base/195 scaling → 75/136), slightly improving its KO potential.
  • Buff Down smash's sweetspot has more base knockback (40 → 52).
  • Nerf Neutral aerial's last hit deals less knockback (30 base/180 scaling → 35/155). While this slightly improves its combo potential at low percents, it more drastically hinders its KO potential at high percents.
  • Nerf Neutral aerial's last hit has a smaller hitbox against aerial opponents (11.5u → 9.8u).
  • Nerf Neutral aerial's penultimate hit inflicts 13 less frames of hitstun, worsening the move's drag-down setups and removing its infinites against certain opponents on platforms (such as Ridley).
  • Nerf Down throw has more knockback scaling (25 → 30), worsening its combo potential.
  • Change Palutena's shield has been adjusted during her idle animation while holding a small item, causing it to no longer clip through her arm.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 8.0.0

  • Black Hole Laser:
    • Nerf Nearby opponents are slowed down for a shorter period at the start of the move.
    • Nerf Black Hole's windbox is smaller (50u → 45u). Combined with the move's shorter slowdown period, this makes it easier to escape.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 11.0.0

  • Nerf Dash attack has more ending lag (FAF 38 → 41).
  • Nerf Forward aerial has more landing lag (7 frames → 9).
  • Nerf Standing grab has considerably less range (Z2 offset: 11.4u → 9.4u).


For a gallery of Palutena's hitboxes, see here.

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

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack Radiance (輝き) / Glimmer (煌めき) / Glimmer Finish (煌めきフィニッシュ) 3% Thrusts her staff forward to emit a blast of light from its orb. While holding her staff out, she then proceeds to attack with repeated bursts of light, followed swinging her staff upward to emit a final burst of light. The first hit can lock. The final hit does decent knockback, allowing it to function as a situational KO move. However, it is slow for a neutral attack, due to coming out on frame 8.
0.6% (loop),
3.5% (last)
Forward tilt Circle of Protection (守りの環) 6% (hit 1), 7% (hit 2) Telekinetically spins her staff in front of herself. This move can hits twice altogether if the tail of the staff hits the opponent. Its long duration and range allows it to punish sidesteps and backward rolls. The second hit has slightly more range than that of the first. However it comes out on frame 14, and its long duration and high lag makes it very punishable if missed.
Up tilt Circle of Heaven (天の環) 1.4% (hits 1-5), 2.5% (hit 6) Kneels and telekinetically spins her staff overhead. Unlike her forward and down tilts, it has KO potential due to the high knockback scaling on the last hit. It also has the lowest startup lag of her tilts, coming out on frame 8. However, its long duration and noticeable ending lag make it punishable. It also has a blind spot that makes it almost impossible to hit small or crouching characters like Kirby.
Down tilt Circle of Earth (地の環) 8.5% (grounded opponents), 5% (aerial opponents) Kneels and telekinetically spins her staff along the ground in front of her. A good spacing tool, and can even punish sidesteps. Slow startup on frame 14 but a low 12 frames of ending lag and has a long 14 frames duration. If the opponent is hit in the air it will be launched vertically, and it is a semi-spike if it hits opponents on the ground. It is one of the few moves in the game that has a longer duration than ending lag, and because of these attributes combined, it is one of the best moves for edge-guarding and 2 frame punishing opponents. It also has the lowest ending lag of a move in her movest, even less than the first hit of her neutral attack.
Dash attack Palutena Shield (パルテナシールド) 11% (clean), 7% (late) Charges forward with her shield. Its clean hitbox grants partial invincibility to Palutena's body and arm (frames 5 and 6 on her upper body, and frames 7-16 on her arm). Her shield also shines briefly, which indicates the duration of its hitbox. Fast start-up on frame 6, although it is unsafe on shield. The clean hit has decent knockback and KOs around 160%.
Forward smash Palutena God Wing (パルテナゴッドウィング) 16% (base), 13% (tip) Conjures a pair of ethereal wings and flaps them forward. It has excellent range, including a huge windbox near the tips of the wings that can push away opponents and potentially gimp recoveries. The tips of the wings are weaker compared to the inner portions. Has quite a bit startup lag at frame 18 (tied with up smash) and very high ending lag with 43 frames, making this move very punishable. Occasionally, Palutena utters "Goddess Wings!" when using this move. Based on the move of the same name used by Palutena in her boss fight in Kid Icarus: Uprising while she is under the control of the Chaos Kin.
Up smash Pillar of Light (光の柱) 16%/12%/9% (clean, base/middle/tip), 13%/9%/7% (late) Raises her staff skyward to generate a cyan beam of light that erupts from the ground in front of herself. Has the second highest vertical range of any up smash in the game, surpassed only by Snake's. The beam has a trio of hitboxes: one at the base, one at the middle, and one at the top. It has a long-lasting 18 frame duration, and unlike her other smash attacks, has a moderate 28 frames of ending lag, making it her most reliable smash attack. However, its long duration and moderate ending lag still make it very punishable if missed or dodged. It also has almost no horizontal range in front of Palutena and without covering her from directly above and behind. It resembles the Palutena Pressure (パルテナプレッシャー), an attack in Kid Icarus: Uprising used by the Chaos Kin-controlled Palutena, and later on by her doppleganger Pseudo-Palutena.
Down smash Squat God Wing (スクワットゴッドウィング) 15% (clean), 13% (late) Conjures a pair of ethereal wings and flaps them downward on both sides. It has very long range. Its clean hitbox has the highest knockback scaling out of her smash attacks. Much like her forward smash, huge windboxes appear near the tips of her wings and has a sourspot at the tip. Much like her forward smash, Palutena occasionally utters "Goddess Wings!" when using this move. Due to coming out on frame 17 and having extreme ending lag (49 frames), it is very easy to punish.
Neutral aerial Omnidirectional Circle (四方の環) 1.4% (hits 1-6), 5.1% (hit 7) Telekinetically spins her staff while it is adjacent to her right arm. Has the lowest amount of startup lag in her moveset, coming out on frame 5. Notorious for its ability to effectively combo into itself and into other aerials, being capable of comboing into itself at low percentages until four times, and especially for its importance to Palutena's gameplan thanks to its low ending and landing lag, making it very spammable. It also can easily set up an edge-guard when fast fallen, and due to its high knockback scaling, it has enough knockback to KO middleweights at around 150% on the edge of Final Destination. All of these traits combined make it one of her best moves and is arguably one of the best moves in the game due to its effectiveness. Auto-cancels in a full hop.
Forward aerial Palutena Kick (パルテナキック) 10% A flying kick. It has long disjointed range and is somewhat disjointed, as the hitbox extends beyond Palutena's leg. It has a generous auto-cancel window, doing so in a short hop fast fall, and its decent knockback allows it to edge-guard reliably at high percentages. Comes out on frame 9, but it has high ending lag and a short hitbox duration.
Back aerial Shield Bash (シールドバッシュ) 12% A backfist with her shield-equipped arm. Much like her dash attack, the clean hitbox grants invincibility around her upper body, and the duration of its hitbox is indicated by a shine. Its invincibility is brief, which is just before the hitbox first comes out (frame 7). Like her forward aerial, it has a generous auto-cancel window, allowing it to autocancel in a short hop fast fall. It has a large hitbox, but is unable to cover Palutena at point-blank range. It also has 40 frames of ending lag, making it very punishable if it is not used close to the ground.
Up aerial Halo (後光) 1% (hits 1-5), 5% (hit 6) Twirls briefly and then emits her halo above herself. Comes out on frame 10, tying it with down aerial for having the slowest start-up of Palutena's aerials. However, it has several hitboxes that grant great coverage above Palutena, and its last hit's respectable power enables it to KO reliably around 110%. Auto-cancels in a full hop.
Down aerial Purging Kick (追放キック) 11% A downward roundhouse kick. Unlike most meteor smashes, it will always meteor smash midair opponents, thanks to its consistent hitbox. It is also fairly fast for a meteor smash, coming out on frame 10. Conversely, it will obliquely launch grounded opponents (grounded opponents in front of Palutena are launched behind her, and vice versa), which allows it to be used as a punishment option from out of shield when SHFF'd. However, it is unarguably Palutena's worst aerial for a number of reasons. Due to it hitting on frame 10, it is tied with her up aerial for her slowest aerial. It also has the shortest range, duration, and worst auto-cancel window of her aerials (auto-canceling late in a full hop), while its knockback is only average at best for a meteor smash. It also has immense ending lag (47 frames), which is among the laggiest aerials in the game. These traits make it a highly risky, yet only moderately rewarding move, with characters such as Ivysaur, Luigi and Cloud having noticeably better meteor smashes that are similar or even faster in comparison.
Grab Grab (つかみ) Telekinetically clinches the opponent. Palutena's standing grab range is above-average, while her pivot grab also has impressive range. However, her grab has a noticeable amount of ending lag.
Pummel Grab Petit Shock (つかみプチショック) 1.3% Emits a small burst of light.
Forward throw Zero-Contact Throw (触れない投げ) 9% Curls herself slightly and then telekinetically tosses the opponent forward while throwing out her arms. It is Palutena's second-most damaging throw, but its only utility is as an edge-guard set-up.
Back throw Zero-Contact Reverse Throw (触れない逆投げ) 10% Telekinetically lifts the opponent and then performs an inverted version of the Arabesque (a ballet position) to fling the opponent backward. It is Palutena's most damaging throw, and her only throw that KOs at reasonable percentages, doing so at around 130% on middleweights on the edge of Final Destination. It is also useful for setting up an edge-guard.
Up throw Launch (打ち上げ) 8% Telekinetically raises the opponent upward with her left arm, and heaves them upward by thrusting her staff upward. Despite having high base knockback, its average damage output and below-average knockback scaling make it unreliable at KOing without the use of a highly elevated platform, while its ending lag makes it unfavorable as a combo starter. As a result, it is better suited for setting up aerial pressure.
Down throw Knock Down (叩き落とし) 5% Telekinetically lifts the opponent and slams them onto the ground. It is Palutena's most useful throw, thanks to its high base knockback, very low knockback growth, and diagonal launching angle. These traits make it a potent combo starter at a wide range of percentages, being able to set up neutral aerial strings at low to mid percentages (or just combo into any of her aerials), and can even set up for KO confirms into back aerial at high percentages. As of update 7.0.0, however, the latter combo is noticeably more difficult to perform.
Floor attack (front)   7% Swings her staff behind herself and then in front of herself before getting up.
Floor attack (back)   7% Swings her staff behind herself and then in front of herself before getting up.
Floor attack (trip)   5% Swings her staff in front of herself and then behind herself before getting up.
Edge attack   9% Performs a legsweep while climbing up.
Neutral special Autoreticle 3.5% (per shot) Illuminates her staff's orb to aim a reticle over the opponent, and then fires three energy blasts at that location. It will only fire the blasts if nothing blocks her target, and if the opponent is within range and not intangible. The shots can lock, although due to the changes on locking, it has even less use to initiate combos. It can be used as a way for stopping direct approaches and to force an approach. It is also able to hit opponents behind Palutena, such as if she is moving when it fires and if the opponent is at the maximum horizontal range toward her. Although situational, it also has very minor recovery potential, thanks to it briefly stalling her descent. However, it has high ending lag, regardless of whether or not it targets anything. Its very minor knockback also makes it poor for spacing.
Side special Explosive Flame 1.5% (hits 1-6), 5.5% (hit 7) Creates a multi-hitting explosion approximately 4 character lengths away from herself. If inputted like a smash attack, the explosion hits approximately 7.5 units away. The ability to change its range makes it a decent spacing and zoning tool, as well as an edge-guarding option. This move has good KO potential, thanks to its loop hits reliably trapping the opponent, and its last hit having impressive knockback. However it is very punishable if missed. However, it is safe on shield due to its minimal ending lag.
Up special Warp Disappears and then reappears in a chosen direction. It quickly covers both a respectable amount of vertical distance and a decent horizontal distance while rendering Palutena invisible (frames 16-32). It can also be edge-canceled, which grants it defensive and re-positioning potentials. However, it renders Palutena helpless after she reappears (unless it is edge-canceled) and lacks a hitbox to protect her. She also falls faster in this state.
Down special Counter/Reflect Barrier 1.3× (countered attack)/1.4× (reflected projectile) Palutena uses her shield to retaliate against an opponent's attack. If a physical attack connects, Palutena will forcefully thrust her staff forward, creating a blast of light. If a projectile attack connects, she raises her shield to emit a rectangular barrier that reflects the projectile.
Final Smash Black Hole Laser 2.4% (hits 1-12), 12% (final) Illuminates her staff's orb and twirls around repeatedly before firing a Black Hole from her staff's orb, after which she quickly retreats off-stage in order to fire a Mega Laser into the Black Hole. The Black Hole does not deal damage, but pulls opponents within a 45 unit radius (about 0.5u smaller than the distance between the platforms of Small Battlefield) into itself and places them in a tumbling state. Conversely, the Mega Laser hits multiple times before concluding with a final hit that launches the opponent and dissipates the Black Hole.

Announcer call[edit]

Sound.png This article could use additional or higher-quality audio files.
The editor who added this tag suggests: Needs announcer calls from other languages.
If you have a good audio file for this article, upload it here.

On-screen appearance[edit]

  • Walks out of a set of golden doors that are decorated with her halo's design and emit a bright, shining light.


  • Up taunt: Raises her arms overhead and then brings them down while producing ethereal wings, emitting her halo, and saying "You shall be purified." (浄化してあげましょう, You will be purified.)
  • Side taunt: Laughs while using her staff to perform a twirling, inverted version of the Arabesque.
  • Down taunt: Lets go of her staff and telekinetically holds it next to herself, then brushes her hair aside while emitting her halo and saying "Ready when you are." (いつでもどうぞ?, Feel free whenever.) before grabbing her staff.

Idle poses[edit]

  • Taps the ground with the tail of her staff and shield in front of herself, during which she briefly emits her halo.
  • Looks away while crossing her staff and shield in front of herself, during which she briefly emits her halo.

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 Pa - lu - te - na! Pa - lu - tena! Pa - lu - te - na! Pa - lu - te - na! *claps 2 times* Pa - lu - te - na!
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 Paaaaalu - te - na! *claps 6 times* Paaaaalu - te - na! *claps 5 times* Paaaaalu - tena! Palu - tena!

Victory poses[edit]

  • Left: Twirls with her staff held out, hovering off the ground. She then raises it in an arc and points it in front of her, saying "No one can hide from the light." ("さ、回収しましょうか?", So, shall we recover?).
    • If Pit is present in the match, there is a chance she will instead say "Oh, so sorry about that, Pit." ("やられちゃいましたね?", Were you hurt?). If this quote plays in the Japanese version, Palutena does not look at the camera.
  • Up: Enters from the side of the screen hovering. She then briefly spins her staff in front of herself telekinetically, catches it, and stands with it pointed outwards. During the pose, she says "Too bad for you." ("ちょっと大人げなかったかしら?", Was that a bit immature??).
    • If Dark Pit was present in the match, there is a chance she will instead say "Poor little Pittoo." ("いつまでも意地っ張りですね~", Forever a nuisance...!).
  • Right: Uses her staff to briefly perform the Backwards Showgirl (a pole dancing move) before assuming a seated stance while floating and laughs. In the Japanese version, she says ("本気出しても良いんですよ。", It's all right to fight seriously.).
A flourished remix of a small excerpt of the title screen theme of Kid Icarus, with an original ending.

In competitive play[edit]

Tier placement and history[edit]

Since the beginning of Ultimate, Palutena has always had a very positive reception among the Smash community, as many top players noticed her significant buffs from SSB4 early on and was agreed on as a high tier for much of 2019. However, after Nairo won Mainstage and Let's Make Big Moves, her already strong reception and results have further increased, with strengths such as her notorious neutral aerial, KO confirms from her down throw, and her relatively low learning curve becoming even more apparent, while her few weaknesses are relatively minor. This has to led to nearly all top players to believe she is a top tier, with many claiming she is among the best in the game, alongside other characters such as Pikachu, Joker, and Peach.

Although she remained a strong character after her nerfs in updates 7.0.0 and 11.0.0, during the online era her representation briefly stagnated due to her strongest players either dropping the character, performing worse, becoming inactive, or in Nairo's case, retiring; this led some players to question whether Palutena was starting to fall off in a similar vein to Inkling. This opinion, however, did not last long, as following the return of offline competitive play, other Palutena players such as Lui$, Chag, and Raflow picked up steam and saw several notable placements at a national level, completely nullifying the stagnation during the pandemic. As a result, opinions on Palutena had remained largely the same. However, players still believe her nerfs and the adapting meta have noticeably pushed Palutena back a few placements, with most players now just viewing her as a solid top tier and not among the best characters in the game, making her ranked 17th on the first and current tier list, near the bottom of the top tier.

Most historically significant players[edit]

Any number following the Smasher name indicates placement on the Fall 2019 PGRU, which recognizes the official top 50 players in the world in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate from July 13th, 2019 to December 15th, 2019.

See also: Category:Palutena players (SSBU)

Classic Mode: A Little Divine Intervention[edit]

Palutena's congratulations screen.

Referring to being a goddess herself, Palutena's opponents all come from series where religion and mythology play a key role. The title is the same as a phrase she says in her debut character trailer for Super Smash Bros. 4.

Round Opponent Stage Music Notes
1 LinkHeadSSBU.png Link and ZeldaHeadSSBU.png Zelda Great Plateau Tower Overworld
2 CloudHeadSSBU.png Cloud Midgar Magnus's Theme The track used and Cloud as an opponent serve as an allusion to Magnus, who also wields a sword which has almost the same size as its user.
3 SimonHeadSSBU.png Simon and RichterHeadSSBU.png Richter Dracula's Castle Destroyed Skyworld
4 ShulkHeadSSBU.png Shulk Gaur Plain Thunder Cloud Temple
5 BayonettaHeadSSBU.png Bayonetta Umbra Clock Tower Riders Of The Light
6 PitHeadSSBU.pngPitHeadYellowSSBU.pngPitHeadRedSSBU.png Pit (x3) and DarkPitHeadSSBU.pngDarkPitHeadGreenSSBU.pngDarkPitHeadBrownSSBU.png Dark Pit (x3) Palutena's Temple Underworld Horde Battle.
Bonus Stage
Final Master Hand Final Destination Master Hand (Less than 7.0 intensity)
Master Hand / Crazy Hand (Intensity 7.0 or higher)
On intensity 7.0 and higher, Crazy Hand fights alongside Master Hand.

Note: Most stages play a track from the Kid Icarus universe, no matter what universe the stage originates from, with the only exception being Umbra Clock Tower.

Credits roll after completing Classic Mode. Completing it as Palutena has Destroyed Skyworld accompany the credits.

Role in World of Light[edit]

Finding Palutena in World of Light

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

During the opening cutscene, Palutena was present on the cliffside when Galeem unleashed his beams of light. She attempted to block a beam with Reflect Barrier, which the beam completely pierced, disintegrating her. Her defeat causes Pit and Dark Pit to lose their Power of Flight, making the duo fall victim to the beams as well. They were all placed under Galeem's imprisonment alongside the rest of the fighters, excluding Kirby. A puppet fighter cloned from her is later seen alongside ones cloned from Greninja, King Dedede, Pokémon Trainer and other fighters.

Palutena is the last fighter to be found to be imprisoned by Galeem. In The Final Battle, she is called by Galeem as part of reinforcements after Dark Samus is awakened and Crazy Hand is beaten. She is an obligatory unlock for the true ending, as awaking her leads to a battle with Master Hand that frees him from Galeem's control (both of whom's defeats greatly shifts the balance of power in Dharkon's favor).

Fighter Battle[edit]

No. Image Name Type Power Stage Music
Palutena SSBU.png
12,500 Palutena's Temple (Ω form) Destroyed Skyworld


Palutena's fighter spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 300 Gold, but only after Palutena has been unlocked. Unlocking Palutena in World of Light allows the player to preview the spirit below in the Spirit List under the name "???". As a fighter spirit, it cannot be used in Spirit Battles and is purely aesthetic. Her fighter spirit has an alternate version that replaces it with her artwork in Ultimate.

In Spirit Battles[edit]

As the main opponent[edit]

Spirit Battle parameters Inspiration
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music Character
SSBU spirit Wanda.png
Wanda Super Mario Series •Tiny Palutena PalutenaHeadRedSSBU.png
Yoshi YoshiHeadCyanSSBU.png
Peach PeachHeadRedSSBU.png
Mario MarioHeadBlueSSBU.png
1,500 Green Greens (Battlefield form) N/A •Defeat the main fighter to win
•Reinforcements will appear after an enemy is KO'd
Mario Paint Medley
SSBU spirit Elline.png
Elline Kirby Series •Tiny Palutena PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png
3,800 Rainbow Cruise •Item: Balls •Take your strongest team into this no-frills battle Butter Building (Brawl)
SSBU spirit Alolan Exeggutor.png
Alolan Exeggutor Pokémon Series •Giant Palutena PalutenaHeadGreenSSBU.png (140 HP)
4,300 Tortimer Island (hazards off) N/A •Timed stamina battle (1:00)
•The enemy favors up smash attacks
•Only certain Pokémon will emerge from Poké Balls (Alolan Exeggutor)
Battle! (Wild Pokémon) - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
SSBU spirit Nyna.png
Nyna Fire Emblem Series Palutena PalutenaHeadCyanSSBU.png
Ganondorf GanondorfHeadGreySSBU.png
4,200 Temple N/A •Defeat the main fighter to win
•The enemy tends to avoid conflict
•The enemy heals over time
Shadow Dragon Medley
SSBU spirit Deirdre.png
Deirdre Fire Emblem Series Palutena PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png
3,700 Temple •Attack Power ↓ •You have reduced attack power Edge of Adversity
SSBU spirit Lilina.png
Lilina Fire Emblem Series Palutena PalutenaHeadRedSSBU.png
Roy RoyHeadCyanSSBU.png
3,500 Gaur Plain (Battlefield form) N/A •The enemy's explosion and fire attacks have increased power
•The enemy favors side specials
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Beyond Distant Skies - Roy's Departure
SSBU spirit Ninian.png
Ninian Fire Emblem Series Palutena PalutenaHeadGreenSSBU.png
Roy RoyHeadGreenSSBU.png
3,400 Castle Siege (Battlefield form) N/A •Defeat the main fighter to win
•The enemy can use their Final Smash twice in a row
•The enemy's FS Meter charges quickly
Winning Road - Roy's Hope
SSBU spirit Elincia.png
Elincia Fire Emblem Series Palutena PalutenaHeadRedSSBU.png
3,600 Skyworld •Health Recovery
•Attack Power ↑
•The enemy has increased attack power when the enemy's at high damage
•The enemy is healed when the enemy's at high damage
•The enemy has increased move speed
Victory Is Near
Artwork used for Classic Medusa's Spirit. Ripped from Game Files
Medusa Kid Icarus Series •Giant Palutena PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png (140 HP)
4,600 Find Mii (Ω form) •Hazard: High Gravity •The enemy has super armor but moves slower
Stamina battle
•Your jumping power decreases after a little while
Boss Fight 1 - Kid Icarus: Uprising
pseudo palutena spirit
Pseudo-Palutena Kid Icarus Series Palutena PalutenaHeadPurpleSSBU.png
1,900 Dracula's Castle N/A •Only certain Pokémon will emerge from Poké Balls (Ditto) Destroyed Skyworld
Artwork used for Katrina's Spirit. Ripped from Game Files
Katrina Animal Crossing Series Palutena PalutenaHeadPurpleSSBU.png
3,700 Smashville •Sudden Damage •All fighters take serious damage
•The enemy favors dash attacks
•The enemy has increased move speed
Plaza / Title Theme - Animal Crossing: City Folk / Animal Crossing: Wild World
serena spirit
Serena Animal Crossing Series Palutena PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png
1,900 Fountain of Dreams •Item: Hammer •The enemy is easily distracted by items The Roost - Animal Crossing: Wild World Serena
SSBU spirit Melia.png
Melia Xenoblade Chronicles Series Palutena PalutenaHeadBlueSSBU.png
Shulk ShulkHeadLavenderSSBU.png
4,200 Gaur Plain (Battlefield form) •Hazard: Poison Floor •The floor is poisonous
•The enemy's magic attacks have increased power
Time to Fight! - Xenoblade Chronicles
from the game's files
Mia Golden Sun Series Palutena PalutenaHeadCyanSSBU.png
2,200 Delfino Plaza (Large Island) N/A •Timed battle (1:00)
•The enemy shields often
•The enemy can heal by shielding attacks
Battle Scene / Final Boss - Golden Sun
ripped from game
Elena Pandora's Tower Palutena PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png
3,600 Great Plateau Tower •Item Tidal Wave •The enemy becomes temporarily invincible after eating
•The enemy starts with damage but has increased defense
•Certain items will appear in large numbers after a little while
Midna's Lament
SSBU spirit Culdra.png
Culdra Culdcept Series Palutena PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png
9,200 Temple •Magic and PSI Unleashed •All fighters' magic and PSI attacks have increased power Culdcept
SSBU spirit Athena Asamiya.png
Athena Asamiya Psycho Soldier Palutena PalutenaHeadBlueSSBU.png
Richter RichterHeadGreenSSBU.png
9,400 Mushroomy Kingdom (hazards off) N/A •The enemy favors special moves
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Psycho Soldier Theme (Overseas Version)
SSBU spirit Rhea.png
Rhea Fire Emblem Series Palutena PalutenaHeadSSBU.png (80 HP)
•Giant Charizard CharizardHeadWhiteSSBU.png (120 HP)
10,300 Bridge of Eldin (hazards off) N/A Stamina battle
•Reinforcements will appear after an enemy is KO'd
•The enemy is giant
The Apex of the World
SSBU spirit H'aanit & Ophilia.png
H'aanit & Ophilia OCTOPATH TRAVELER Palutena PalutenaHeadSSBU.png
Wolf WolfHeadSSBU.png
Pit PitHeadWhiteSSBU.png
9,200 Summit (Battlefield form) •Health Recovery •The enemy's ranged weapons have increased power
•The enemy can unleash powerful critical hits at random
•The enemy is healed significantly when the enemy's at high damage
Battle Start - Fossil Fighters: Frontier Ophilia

As a minion[edit]

Spirit Battle parameters Inspiration
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music Character
SSBU spirit Mòrag.png
Mòrag Xenoblade Chronicles Series Lucina LucinaHeadNavySSBU.png
Palutena PalutenaHeadBlueSSBU.png
2,400 Gaur Plain (Battlefield form) •Hazard: Lava Floor •Defeat the main fighter to win
•The floor is lava
Battle!! - Xenoblade Chronicles 2 Brighid
Mor Ardain - Roaming the Wastes -[SB 1]
SSBU spirit Trevor C. Belmont.png
Trevor C. Belmont Castlevania Series Simon SimonHeadIndigoSSBU.png
Palutena PalutenaHeadBlueSSBU.png
Sheik SheikHeadRedSSBU.png
13,000 Dracula's Castle •Assist Trophy Enemies (Alucard) •Hostile assist trophies will appear when the enemy's at high damage
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Beginning Sypha Belnades
from the game files
Isaac Golden Sun Series Mii Swordfighter MiiSwordfighterHeadSSBU.png (Moveset 1222, Isaac Wig, Isaac's Outfit, High Voice Type 1)
Palutena PalutenaHeadCyanSSBU.png
Robin RobinHeadGreenSSBU.png
Roy RoyHeadYellowSSBU.png
8,900 Wuhu Island (Swaying Bridge) •Assist Trophy Enemies (Isaac) •The enemy's magic attacks have increased power
•Hostile assist trophies will appear
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
Battle Scene / Final Boss - Golden Sun Mia
  1. ^ This alternative occurs when the corresponding DLC has been purchased and downloaded.

Alternate costumes[edit]

Palutena Palette (SSBU).png
PalutenaHeadSSBU.png PalutenaHeadPinkSSBU.png PalutenaHeadCyanSSBU.png PalutenaHeadGreenSSBU.png PalutenaHeadBlueSSBU.png PalutenaHeadRedSSBU.png PalutenaHeadBlackSSBU.png PalutenaHeadPurpleSSBU.png


Fighter Showcase Video[edit]


  • Palutena is the only character to have two previously separate special moves (Counter and Reflect Barrier) consolidated into a single special move slot.
  • Palutena's artwork was one of three to have been updated on the official site, alongside Falco and Shulk. Compared to her original artwork, her halo was added, her chiton now covers up more of her thigh, her hair became a brighter green, her lips were shrunk, and her eyes were enlarged. Overall, these changes make it more consistent with the official artwork from both Kid Icarus: Uprising and Super Smash Bros. 4 (especially the latter), as well as her in-game model.
  • Due to age rating issues, the slit in her chiton was changed to cover up more of her thigh beginning in update 1.0.6. for the Japanese version of SSB4. This change was retained in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, including all international versions.
    • While her official artwork depicts the top of the chiton's slit as fused together, it appears to be stitched together on her in-game model.
    • As Palutena's Fighter Spirit artwork uses an unaltered illustration from Kid Icarus: Uprising, it depicts her chiton still revealing most of her thigh. This is probably an oversight, as the spirits for Camilla from Fire Emblem Fates and Mythra had modified artwork to be less provocative.
      • This oversight appears to be shared with the Fighter Spirits for Bayonetta, female Corrin, and Pyra, who likewise use unaltered artwork from their games of origin, but have had censorship applied to them in their playable forms.
  • Palutena is one of the last characters to unlock. She's the last unlockable character in Kirby's Classic Mode column, she is the final opponent in the timed encounters, and in World of Light, she is in the Final Battle map.
  • An interview with Masahiro Sakurai revealed that Palutena and Bayonetta were under consideration to survive Galeem's attack in the World of Light opening, but were ultimately turned down in favor of Kirby. Sakurai stated that this was due to Palutena and Bayonetta's playstyles being very complex for beginners, as well as how other characters from their respective universes were also turned into spirits, stating that Palutena couldn't do anything to escape as all other Kid Icarus deities like Hades were also turned into spirits.
    • Both Palutena and Bayonetta are on the Final Battle map, appearing as the final pair of fighters to be encountered. This implies that Galeem (and eventually Dharkon) knew how threatening Palutena and Bayonetta were (Palutena being a goddess and Bayonetta's slaughter of two gods) to his plans, and thus kept them as a last resort.
    • Despite using Hades as an example, his spirit does not appear in World of Light at all.
  • Prior to update 8.0.0, Palutena's unique voice clip when winning against Pit ("Oh, so sorry about that, Pit.") was missing in the Sound Test. She shares this distinction with Fox, Wolf, Simon, and Lucina.
  • Palutena is the only Kid Icarus character to not fight alongside a CPU ally in the final round of her route.
  • Oddly, Palutena does not vanish when performing a directional air dodge despite the sound effects playing. She shares this oddity with Rosalina & Luma and Greninja.
  • Oddly, Palutena's internal files of voice clips for her smash attacks use the same 3-number codes (e.g. "003" in the case of "Goddess wings!" voice clip) used for special moves, Final Smashes, and on-screen appearances of characters whose voice clips are ported from Super Smash Bros. Brawl (including partial ones like Sonic), as well as few other characters such as Kirby, Ness, King Dedede, Lucario, Robin, and Rosalina & Luma, instead of using the "attack" descriptor that smash attacks usually share with neutral attack, tilt attacks, dash attack, aerial attacks, and floor attacks. This was also present in SSB4. Daisy shares a similar, albeit not entirely the same oddity with her on-screen appearance and Daisy Bomber.
    • In King Dedede's case, this does not apply to voice clips for Dede-Rush; and in Robin's case, this only applies to the voice clip used when his tomes are broken.