Falco's Reflector in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
In Melee, Falco's Reflector animation is identical to Fox's and additionally, Falco can also jump cancel his reflector, allowing him to wavedash out of it. The knockback on the move sends opponents upward, meaning he cannot combo most opponents with consecutive waveshines like Fox can. Falco's reflector, however, does combo into other aerials, particularly his down air to create the combo string known as "pillaring" which consists of excessive use of the reflector, down air, and up tilt. This potential means Falco's reflector has the potential for more extended combos. The vertical angle of his reflector also means Falco cannot edgeguard with it, but because of the move's high base knockback, Falco can combo consecutive shines for vertical KOs.
In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, how Falco uses his Reflector is very different, as he now kicks it away in front of him when it is activated. It then returns to him as if magnetized. This serves not only as a reflector, but also as an unorthodox, but relatively unrewarding poke option in neutral. It can occasionally trip opponents, leaving them vulnerable to tech chases, but if the move doesn't trip, it is highly punishable. The Reflector's hitbox now also has a horizontal angle like Fox's, though it is weaker when used against airborne opponents, and doesn't grant invincibility frames anymore. It can travel through enemies unhindered, though. Also, since Falco kicks it, he cannot hold it in place, unlike Fox. This means that timing is crucial in reflecting projectiles. Note that when the Reflector comes back to Falco, it can also reflect any projectiles back at any angle at the last second.
In Super Smash Bros. 4, the Reflector's hitbox can itself be reflected, though this does not affect its trajectory, and practically means it will just damage Falco instead of the opponent if the hitbox collides with him (or has not travelled far enough away yet). Visually, the move is unchanged, though Falco's animation for the move is more fluid and he catches his reflector when the move ends instead of it just disappearing. It still trips opponents at low percentages, but because of the higher hitstun in SSB4 and the move is additionally faster, the move is a safer and more reliable poking option than Brawl's version.
In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Falco's Reflector can no longer be reflected, much like in Brawl. Additionally, it no longer has a chance of tripping opponents.
|trophy description||Hit an opponent with Reflector, and he or she will fly straight up; this is Falco's quickest attack.|
|Move List||Kicks out an energy shield that reflects projectiles and deals damage.|
Special Move customization was added in Super Smash Bros. 4. These are the known variations:
- Reflector: Default. Reflects at 1.2x damage.
- Accele-Reflector: Can only reflect when moving forward, reducing reflect window, but it moves faster and reflected projectiles are just over twice as fast and last 50% longer while dealing unaltered damage. The reflector is recolored green, and deactivates once it stops moving forwards. Due to its changed properties, reflecting it cannot damage Falco.
- Reflector Void: The reflector deals more damage and has a much larger hitbox radius, but the move is slower and destroys absorbable projectiles instead of reflecting them (which it does by setting the projectile's lifetime to 0). It still reflects non-absorbable projectiles, but they deal 0.7x damage. The reflector is also recolored purple and still works on projectiles that deal over 50% damage (unlike most reflectors, which break under such high load). Due to the reflector's knockback (which sends foes upward), it is possible to gain vertical KOs in a similar way to how Falco's reflector worked in Melee.
Accele-Reflector being used in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS.
Reflector Void being used in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS.
Like most of Falco's moves, the Reflector is unique to the Super Smash Bros. series, but may have been inspired by the Arwing's ability to deflect enemy fire by doing a Barrel Roll. As revealed in Brawl, Slippy is the Reflector's original designer, and provided Fox and Falco with this special equipment for the occasion of fighting. The energy shield shape as a hexagon might also reference the shape of the Supply rings in Star Fox 64. Up until Brawl, there was no sign of how Fox or Falco activated their Reflectors, as the user simply held a stance and the energy shield simply "appeared" around them. However, Subspace Emissary and the Star Fox cast's redesigns in Brawl revealed that their reflectors were miniature devices that activated on a swipe of their hands. These devices would later make their first canonical appearance in Star Fox Zero, once again attached to Fox and Falco's belts but serving no purpose in gameplay.
Falco's Reflector in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.
Falco using Reflector as shown by the Move List in Ultimate.