Pit (ピット, Pit) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. 4. His return to the series was announced during the E3 Nintendo Direct on June 11th, 2013. Rather than retaining Lani Minella as his voice actor from the English version of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Pit is now voiced by Antony Del Rio, who reprises his role from the English version of Kid Icarus: Uprising. However, he remains uncredited. Minami Takayama, who voiced Pit in the Japanese versions of Brawl and Uprising, also reprises her role.
Pit is currently ranked 32nd/33rd out of 55 on the tier list, placing him in the D tier and tying him with his clone, Dark Pit. This is a moderate drop from his placement in Brawl, where he was ranked 17th out of 38. Pit's frame data is deceptively fast, as almost the entirety of his moveset has less than 10 frames of start-up lag. On a related note, all of his aerial attacks are capable of auto-canceling with a short hop. When these traits are coupled with his disjointed range and projectile, Palutena Bow, Pit boasts a very effective neutral game.
Pit is also among the handful of characters who possesses multiple double jumps, which not only assists his recovery and landing options, but also makes him very capable at edge-guarding. Lastly, Pit's grab game has improved considerably: his forward throw now possesses KO potential, and the changes to hitstun canceling have made his down throw into a very reliable combo starter.
However, Pit's KO potential is unimpressive: aside from edge-guarding and his forward/up smashes, his other KOing options are only effective when sweetspotted (forward tilt and back aerial), or at very high percentages (forward throw and Upperdash Arm). Changes to game mechanics have also nerfed Pit in certain ways: the removal of gliding hinders his recovery, while edge trumping hinders his edge-guarding potential.
Although Pit has a small playerbase, he has nevertheless managed to achieve a decent level of success, thanks to the likes of Earth, Kuro and KiraFlax. Earth, in particular, has demonstrated Pit's viability: he has won a number of regional tournaments; achieved a number of above-average placings at the regional and national levels in both singles and doubles play; and was ranked 35th on Panda Global Rankings' v3 list.
Pit is a middleweight who has above-average walking and dashing speeds; slightly below-average traction; average air acceleration and falling speed; and below-average air speed and gravity. Pit's jump and double jump are both low, although this flaw is largely offset by his three double jumps. These attributes collectively render Pit's overall mobility as average, yet make him adept at adapting to most situations. Unlike most of his fellow middleweights, Pit also has above-average height.
As a beginner-friendly character, Pit has a low learning curve, yet is quite rewarding when played wisely. His ease of use is probably best exemplified by his frame data: aside from six moves (forward tilt, forward smash, and forward, back, up and down aerials), the rest of Pit's normal moveset has less than 10 frames of start-up lag. Pit's neutral special, Palutena Bow, reinforces his ease of use: its ability to be charged and easily maneuvered makes it very useful for zoning, edge-guarding, and even mindgames. When these traits are coupled with his Palutena Bow's disjointed range, Pit's neutral game is among the most effective in SSB4 when utilized properly.
Much like his attributes, Pit's moveset is balanced, so much so that it seemingly has no glaring strengths of weaknesses. When coupled with his great neutral game, Pit's edge-guarding potential, punishment ability, and conversions are all balanced compared to the rest of the cast. Pit's ground game overall possesses a decent level of utility. Neutral attack, down tilt and down smash are decent spacing options, thanks to their quick startup and moderate ending lag in proportion to their range. Neutral attack is also useful for jab canceling, while dash attack can punish landings and whiffed attacks very effectively, and down smash's back hit is a moderately strong semi-spike. Up tilt and especially up smash are useful anti-air moves, while the latter also boasts enough power to score KOs. Lastly, forward smash is Pit's strongest KOing option, and is tied with Marth, Lucina, and Samus' forward smashes as the fastest forward smash in the game.
Unlike in Brawl, Pit now possesses a respectable grab game. His grabs' ranges have increased, while his dash grab's decreased start-up and ending lag make it much safer. However, his forward and down throws underwent the most noticeable improvements. Forward throw's increased base knockback enables it to KO at high percentages while near the edge, whereas the changes to hitstun canceling have made down throw into a very reliable combo starter. Although Pit's up and back throws have less utility in comparison, they have decent damage outputs and launch opponents into unfavorable positions. These traits make them useful at keeping his forward throw fresh for a later KO attempt, as well as alleviating the staleness of his other moves.
Pit's air game is also useful, thanks to his aerial attacks' ability to auto-cancel and their particular strengths. Neutral aerial has the lowest amount of startup lag out of his entire moveset, a long duration, and an excellent auto-cancel window. Altogether, these traits make it useful for edge-guarding, approaching and, when SHFF'd, starting combos. Forward and up aerials are reliable followups from down throw; in addition, the former is useful for approaching and edge-guarding, whereas the latter is excellent for juggling. Back aerial is Pit's strongest aerial attack when sweetspotted, making it ideal for spacing as part of a reverse aerial rush or KOing outright. Lastly, down aerial is useful for edge-guarding, thanks to it being a meteor smash during its first frame, and its fairly large range also makes it decent for approaching.
In the transition to SSB4, almost the entirety of Pit's special moveset underwent numerous changes in reference to Kid Icarus: Uprising. His new side and down specials use weapons that debuted in Uprising; his new up special references Palutena's ability to grant him the Power of Flight; and his new Final Smash uses the Three Sacred Treasures. Upperdash Arm functions very similarly to Raptor Boost: it propels Pit forward and, upon making contact with something, results in him throwing an uppercut that has a decent damage output and very high base knockback. As a result, it boasts KO potential unlike Angel Ring, at the cost of damage racking potential. Upperdash Arm also has utility outside of offense: it grants super armor, can reflect projectiles, and can function as a horizontal recovery option. However, it is very punishable because of its dash's noticeable start-up lag and extreme amount of ending lag, especially when it misses. Upperdash Arm's deflection property is also fairly inconsequential, since it reflects projectiles at an upward diagonal angle instead of directly back at the opponent.
Power of Flight covers an impressive amount of distance, and be angled to propel Pit either vertically, diagonally, or almost horizontally. It also offers better protection compared to Wings of Icarus: Pit can immediately reuse it upon being hit, and it grants intangibility that lasts slightly longer than Wings of Icarus' invincibility. However, Power of Flight's linearity results in it lacking the unpredictability and impressive versatility that Wings of Icarus possesses. Lastly, Guardian Orbitars protect Pit on his left and right sides with energy shields that reflect projectiles. They are also capable of pushing opponents back, which makes them capable of edge-guarding. While these traits make them seem like a direct upgrade of Mirror Shield, the Orbitars are not indestructible like the Shield: should they end up being destroyed, they cannot be used again for 10 seconds. In addition, their high amount of endlag makes them highly risky when used on the ground or when landing.
Despite his strengths, Pit does have some weaknesses. Like Mario, most characters are able to outperform him in various areas: as examples, Mario himself and Luigi have more versatile combo games, Mewtwo has better mobility, Link and Toon Link are better at camping, Cloud has greater range, and Charizard is overall much stronger. Pit's KO potential, however, is his most noticeable weakness. Despite possessing a serviceable amount of KOing options, only his forward smash and up smash are consistently effective, and even these are highly unsafe on shield. In comparison, his other KOing options are only effective when sweetspotted (forward tilt and back aerial), or at very high percentages (down smash, forward throw and Upperdash Arm). This, in turn, is further compounded by his lack of guaranteed KO set-ups. Although rage alleviates Pit's KO potential, his average endurance means that he cannot utilize it as consistently or effectively as heavier characters can. In addition, rage also hinders Pit's combo game out of down throw and neutral aerial, which are two of Pit's most effective combo starters. As a result, Pit will typically spend a comparatively longer time racking up damage before attempting to score a KO, and will often give the opponent high amounts of rage in the process.
Each of Pit's aerials also come with noticeable drawbacks. Neutral aerial has notoriously small linking hitboxes which opponents can easily fall out of; forward aerial has tiny initial hitboxes; up aerial is among the slowest in the game relative to its power; and down aerial's multiple hitboxes all launch at different angles, making consistent use of it difficult. Although all of his aerials auto-cancel with a short hop, none auto-cancel with a short hop buffered fast fall. This means that all Pit players must manually delay their fast fall perfectly in order to use neutral, back and forward aerials effectively. This can also make Pit's combos and pressure game difficult to execute. Despite the fact that most of his aerials are relatively weak, each has large amounts of landing lag. When coupled with Pit's slow air speed and his forward aerial's very small initial hitboxes, Pit noticeably struggles to both land and contest other aerial opponents. In the end, Pit's aerials are helpful in his advantage state and supplement his grounded neutral game, but are much less useful when he is disadvantaged.
Although it is still long-distanced, Pit's recovery has nevertheless worsened since Brawl. Once renowned for its versatility, Pit's recovery is now linear and predictable: his double jumps are lower, gliding has been removed, and Power of Flight is largely inferior to Wings of Icarus because of it functioning like a traditional recovery move. Additionally, while Upperdash Arm can aid Pit's horizontal recovery, it has an extreme amount of ending lag when performed in the air, making it extremely risky when improperly used as a recovery option. Lastly, Pit's grab game is slightly offset by his slightly below-average traction, which can make shield grabs slightly difficult to use when blocking powerful attacks.
Pit possesses some decent custom moves. Guiding Bow grants even more control over the arrow's curvature, albeit at the cost of a lower damage output. Interception Arm functions similarly to a counterattack and boasts better KO potential, thanks to its higher damage output and knockback. However, it lacks any recovery potential because of it moving Pit very slightly backward upon being used, and also forces him into his lengthy aerial ending lag while in midair. Breezy Flight makes Pit more difficult to gimp at its start, but at the cost of weakening his long-distanced recovery. Lastly, Amplifying Orbitars are significantly stronger reflectors, making them a better choice against projectile-reliant characters. However, they lack pushboxes and have less durability.
All in all, Pit's strengths are on par with his weaknesses. His moveset consists of many moves with either long ranges (his grounded moves and back aerial); long durations (neutral/forward/up aerials and forward tilt); low ending lag (auto-canceled neutral/forward aerials, down smash and Palutena Bow); or quick movement (dash attack, dash grab and Upperdash Arm). This combination of traits, along with his good grounded mobility, allows Pit to reliably keep opponents in a disadvantage state, either stuck trying to land or getting off the edge. In the end, this is arguably Pit's saving grace: he can cover enough options and retain advantage long enough to rack up more damage than a character of his limited combo potential should. However, he suffers from unimpressive KO potential similarly to lightweights, yet lacks the extended combo options and safe pressuring options that they use to rack up damage. On the flipside, Pit also has a poor disadvantage state like many heavyweights, yet deals far less damage than most of them.
Despite being a very balanced character, players often overlook Pit in favor of his fellow all-rounder Mario, due to the latter having better frame data and consistent KO potential. This has also been reflected in his tournament representation, which is minimal outside of Japan, much like in Brawl. However, Pit has nevertheless managed to achieve a decent level of success in the competitive scene: Earth has won a number of regional tournaments, while he, Chompy, Kswz, Len, Kuro, and KiraFlax have collectively achieved a number of above-average tournament results at the regional and national levels in both singles and doubles play.
Changes from Brawl
Pit received some of the most noticeable changes of any returning veteran, similarly to Bowser, Dr. Mario, Roy, King Dedede and Charizard. Most of his moves have been heavily altered, with his special moves being the most noticeably changed in order to reference Kid Icarus: Uprising. As a result, Pit received a mix of buffs and nerfs in the transition from Brawl to SSB4, with the latter outweighing the former.
Due to Pit's special moveset being changed to reflect Kid Icarus: Uprising, it has received a mix of both buffs and nerfs. Pit's new side special, Upperdash Arm, provides the most utility out of the three: it possesses KO potential and super armor; can be used for horizontal recovery; and can deflect projectiles. His new down special, Guardian Orbitars, provide protection on both sides, but have limited durability. Lastly, Pit's new up special, Power of Flight, can be immediately reused even if he is hit during its usage, though it has vastly less versatility because of its strictly linear path.
Pit's previously poor grab game has been improved: the changes to hitstun canceling make his down throw into a very useful combo starter, while his forward throw has KO potential at very high percentages. The removal of meteor canceling benefits Pit overall, as he is no longer as vulnerable to meteor smashes relative to the cast. On a related note, his down aerial has also become capable of meteor smashing, which slightly improves his edge-guarding potential. Pit's grounded mobility has improved, which allows him to extend his combos and apply more grounded pressure to his opponents.
However, Pit has received some significant nerfs, most notably to his recovery: it is now hindered by lower and less floaty double jumps, the removal of gliding, and Power of Flight's aforementioned lack of versatility. Many of Pit's attacks also have lower damage outputs, shorter hitbox durations, and increased start-up and ending lag. This is notably obvious with Palutena Bow and his back aerial, which were one of the most reliable projectiles in Brawl and one of Pit's most reliable KOing options, respectively.
In addition to the removal of gliding, other game mechanic changes within SSB4 have indirectly nerfed Pit. The removal of edge-hogging in favor of ledge trumping nerfs Pit's edge-guarding potential, which is further compounded by the majority of the cast having improved recoveries. Additionally, rage is a mixed bag for Pit: while it alleviates his unimpressive KO potential, his merely average endurance results in him being unable to utilize it as consistently or effectively as other characters. As a result, Pit generally has more trouble KOing effectively while becoming easier to KO himself.
Overall, Pit's strengths from Brawl did not carry over well to SSB4, and his buffs do not fully compensate for his nerfs. As a result of these changes, Pit's position relative to the cast is debatable, considering the fact that most of his fellow veterans, particularly those that were once low-tier or bottom-tier, have also been buffed to varying degrees.
Like Mario, Pit has received a very small number of minor changes from game updates. His only noteworthy buff was brought about by update 1.1.0, which decreased the ending lag for Palutena Bow and its custom variations. The changes to shield mechanics brought about by updates 1.1.0 and 1.1.1 also indirectly buffed Pit to a very small degree, as they make Upperdash Arm's decent damage output and very high base knockback, as well as a number of his moves having multiple hits.
In competitive play
Tier placement and history
Pit has been perceived as a mid-tier character since SSB4's release. Despite his playerbase and tournament results being among the most sparse, players such as Chompy, Earth, KiraFlax, Kuro and Plastic Poptart spearheaded his metagame and proved he is still a rather viable character in competitive play. This consensus also applied to his clone, Dark Pit, because of their very minor gameplay differences. Earth's efforts in competitive play, most notably placing 13th at GENESIS 3, further cemented Pit's viability. As a result, he was ranked 18th on the first tier list, which placed him one spot below Dark Pit.
Although Pit's tournament results had been impressive up to this point, they have never been as consistent as other mid-tier characters. Despite Earth placing 9th and 25th at EVO 2016 and GENESIS 4, respectively, Pit's consistently sparse results and very small playerbase hindered his standing within subsequent tier lists. He would be ranked 24th on the second list, placing him three spots above Dark Pit; 30th/31st on the third tier list, tying him with Dark Pit; and 32nd/33rd on the fourth and current tier list.
Despite the fourth list's restructured tiers rendering him and his clone as the third highest ranking mid-tier characters, Pit and Dark Pit's placements are nevertheless debatable. While some players agree with their current placement, others like Dabuz argue that both Pits should be ranked lower because of their lack of any particular "game breaking" traits that some higher ranked characters possess with Dabuz going as far as saying Pit and Dark Pit should be some of the worst characters in the game due to this, however this is greatly debatable.
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