- "Kamikaze" redirects here. For the American Yoshi player, see Smasher:Kamikaze. For Hero's suicide attack, see Kamikazee.
A sacrificial KO (also called a kamikaze, a suicide or a trade-off) is a technique that has appeared in all installments of the Super Smash Bros. series, where one character KOs both themselves and an opponent with a single move. A majority of sacrificial KOs involves attacks that can grab opponents in midair, though a number of other attacks, such as stall-then-fall aerials and self-damaging attacks with self-knockback, can also be considered sacrificial KOs. Most sacrificial KOs result in the user self destructing, either by directly KOing them alongside the opponent or by preventing them from potentially returning to the stage.
Sacrificial KOs are useful if the user has a high percentage and the opponent has a low percentage; as the user is likely to be KOed soon, taking down a comparatively fresh opponent at the same time can even out the match. If the user has a lead in stocks, sacrificial KOs accelerate the match and can even score victories if the victim only has one stock remaining. In the same way, low-damage or trailing players should avoid using sacrificial KOs, as this simply brings them closer to losing. If both players have only one stock remaining, then the user can win, lose, or enter Sudden Death, depending on the exact characteristics of the individual technique.
While sacrificial KOs returned in Smash 4 with the same functionality as before, version 1.0.4 nerfed a majority of these KOs by causing the initiator to be KOed before their victim, potentially allowing the victim to return to the stage and making sacrificial KOs much less useful for winning matches. Before Ultimate, the only exception to this rule was Ganondorf's Flame Choke, as it is more commonly used as Ganondorf's only decent horizontal recovery option, and would see little to no use off-stage if it caused Ganondorf to be KOed first. In Ultimate, Flame Choke was nerfed to KO Ganondorf first; however, every sacrificial KO that used a meteor smash was made more reliable, often KOing the opponent before the initiator, due to meteor smashes KOing characters before they hit the bottom blast line if the knockback is strong enough.
Sacrificial KOs are typically named by combining the suffix "-cide" with the first part of the character's name; this convention was popularised by American smasher t1mmy and his machinima entitled "1-800-KIRBYCIDE".
Grab-based sacrificial KOs
|Character||Applicable games||Execution||Last-stocks behavior|
|All characters||All games||If one character grabs another character while standing on a piece of terrain that is moving towards a blast line, both characters will be KO'd, as long as the grab is not broken. Stages where this can happen include SSB's Mushroom Kingdom, Great Bay (on the turtle), Icicle Mountain, Delfino Plaza, Halberd, Mushroomy Kingdom, Rumble Falls, Town and City, Kalos Pokémon League, Wily Castle, PAC-LAND and any Stage Builder stage that has falling platforms that have nothing below them.||If the platform is rising or falling towards the top or bottom blast line, Sudden Death always occurs. If the platform is moving towards the side blast lines, whoever is closest to the blast line will always lose. The character that landed the grab in a losing position can evade a loss by opting to throw the other character instead.|
|Bowser||Melee||"Bowsercide" is executed by grabbing an airborne opponent with Koopa Klaw and falling to the blast line with them in hand. This sacrificial KO is not exceptionally useful; the move can be easily escaped, Bowser is unlikely to recover if the opponent does so, and Bowser is always KOed first.||Bowser always loses.|
|Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||"Bowsercide" is executed with Flying Slam, with Bowser grabbing the opponent and diving off the side of the stage. The move cannot be escaped, but as the lower-damage player has more control over the pair's flight, it is not useful for evening out percentages. While the technique initially returned for Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, version 1.0.4 changed Flying Slam so that Bowser is KO'd before the opponent when the move is performed onto a blast line, making it less useful than in Brawl.||In PAL and Sudden Death for Brawl, Bowser always wins. In NTSC's Brawl, port priority determines whether Bowser wins or Sudden Death occurs. In Smash 4 and Ultimate, Bowser always loses.|
|Diddy Kong||Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||"Diddycide" is done by using Monkey Flip on an airborne opponent and letting the pair fall to the blast line. As Diddy jumping during the grab will meteor smash the opponent, this Sacrificial KO is regarded as impractical.||In Brawl, Diddy always wins. In Smash 4 and Ultimate, Diddy always loses.|
|Donkey Kong||All games||"Kongocide" is executed with Donkey Kong's forward throw, carrying himself and his victim off the stage. This is typically not used as a straight sacrificial KO, as the technique KOs Donkey Kong first and the move can be easily mashed out of; it is generally more useful to throw opponents under or against the stage for a stage spike.||DK always loses.|
|Ganondorf||Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||"Ganoncide" is done by using Flame Choke on an opponent with both characters in the air, causing both to plummet downwards. Fast-acting once it connects and inescapable, but very risky to use, as the move causes helplessness if it misses. However, in Ultimate the opponent can escape.||Unpredictable in Brawl, potentially causing a win, a loss, or Sudden Death for Ganondorf. It is hypothesized this has to do with how the upside-down victim's model is located in relation to the right-side-up Ganondorf's during their plunge. In Smash 4, Ganondorf always wins. In Ultimate, Ganondorf always won in Version 1.0.0, but now always loses.|
|Kazuya||Ultimate||"Kazucide" is executed using Heaven's Door in a way that the opponent is pushed offstage. However, it is easy to escape from and Kazuya will continue to plummet even if the opponent manages to escape and recover.||Kazuya always loses.|
|King Dedede||Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||"Dededecide" is executed by inhaling an enemy and walking off-stage. While generally safe due to King Dedede's long, safe recovery, spitting the victim underneath the stage for a stage spike is generally more effective.||In Brawl, Sudden Death always occurs. In Smash 4 and Ultimate, King Dedede always loses.|
|King K. Rool||Ultimate||"Roolcide" is executed using Blunderbuss's Vacuum feature offstage and dragging the opponent to the blast zone. This is inescapable, as the opponent can only get released from the grab by being shot out by the Blunderbuss itself. This is often performed by accident when attempting to edgeguard with Vacuum, as the strong knockback is a good gimping tool in and of itself, though a Roolcide can technically apply if a trade still occurs, in which K. Rool always wins. However, the K. Rool player can survive as well as get a K.O by using Blunderbuss, but instead blasting them into the stage, which hits the victim with a stage spike. Because of K. Rool's long recovery, in most situations he survives.||King K. Rool always loses.|
|Kirby||All games||"Kirbycide"s are the most famous form of sacrificial KO. Using Inhale on enemies and walking off-stage (or inhaling them in mid-air, in SSB) is highly effective, and in Melee, Kirby can even survive after larger opponents are KO'd out of his stomach; Kirby's long recovery can also prevent him from being KOed in the process, though the efficiency of these KOs was nerfed in later games, with Brawl generally causing Sudden Death, and Smash 4 causing Kirby to almost always lose, though a Kirbycide with Jumping Inhale will cause a Sudden Death. As such, it is more practical for Kirby to release his opponent before crossing the blast line, then performing another action on them if possible, such as a footstool.
Kirby can also use his forward, back, and up throws as Kirbycides in Melee, though the former two can be escaped via mashing (leaving Kirby to self-destruct), and the last is difficult to execute; the back and forward throws cannot Kirbycide in later games, and if the floor underneath Kirby vanishes while he performs the throw, he will automatically let go of the opponent while throwing them. Kirby can also use the sacrificial KOs of Dedede, Wario, and K. Rool by copying their abilities, with identical behavior involving the last stocks.
|Inhale: Kirby almost always wins in Melee; almost always Sudden Death in Brawl; almost always loses in Smash 64, Smash 4 and Ultimate|
Forward and back throws: Kirby always wins
Up throw: Kirby always loses in Melee; port priority determines the victor in Brawl.
|Meta Knight||Brawl||"Metacide" is executed by using Meta Knight's up throw when against an edge and under a solid ceiling, possibly causing him and his victim to fall off the stage (possibly influenced by the user's movement). The technique is considered extremely impractical, as it requires precise positioning to perform, and Meta Knight has far better options out of a grab, especially on a ledge.||Meta Knight always loses.|
|Mii Brawler||Ultimate||"Brawlercide" is executed by using Suplex to grab an off-stage opponent. Because the Brawler continuously plummets downward after jumping upward when using the move (unless they hit the ground or a platform), it can send both the Brawler and the victim plummeting to the lower blast line, although it KOs the Brawler first, making this move more for equalizing stocks at the start or in the middle of the match.||Mii Brawler always loses.|
|Ridley||Ultimate||"Ridleycide" is executed by using Space Pirate Rush on an opponent while off-stage, causing both to plummet downwards. However, it is very risky to use as it can be escaped from, although Ridley can throw his opponent beneath the stage if he is close enough.||Ridley always loses.|
|R.O.B.||Smash 4; Ultimate||"Robocide" occurs when R.O.B. uses his up throw when on a moving platform or near an edge, possibly causing him and his victim to fall off the stage, KOing both R.O.B. and his opponent.||R.O.B. always loses.|
|Robin||Smash 4; Ultimate||"Robincide" is executed by using Nosferatu on an opponent while off-stage, causing both to fall downwards slowly. This is impractical, as it is hard to land, can be mashed out of, and can only be used four times per tome (three in Ultimate).||Robin always loses.|
|Wario||Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||"Wariocide" occurs when Wario uses Chomp while falling, taking his opponent down with him. Difficult to escape from, and can promote stage spikes, but not very practical, due to the technique KOing Wario first.||Wario always loses.|
Other sacrificial KOs
|Character||Applicable games||Execution||Last-stocks behavior|
|All characters||All games||The usage of self-damaging explosives in close ranges is a sacrificial KO, though such instances are often unintentional. Items such as Motion-Sensor Bombs, Bob-ombs, Gooey Bombs, Electrode, and other explosives can cause this, as can items spawned by characters, such as Snake's Hand Grenades, Duck Hunt's Trick Shot, or Steve's TNT.||Depends on who suffered more knockback. Sudden Death if both are KO'd at the same time.|
|Chrom||Ultimate||Chrom's up special move Soaring Slash contains a powerful meteor smash, which can reliably KO opponents at any percentage, although Chrom must sacrifice his stock to meteor smash with the move provided there is no ledge to grab, as both characters will plummet to the bottom blast zone. This is called "Chromicide", and is very similar to Aethercide, due to Soaring Slash being incredibly similar to Aether.||Chrom always wins as long as the falling slash deals enough knockback. After update 2.0.0: this was made more difficult to do due to a higher threshold for sufficient knockback.|
|Cloud||Smash 4; Ultimate||"Cloudcide" is executed with Climhazzard. If Cloud uses the downward slash offstage and hits an opponent with the meteor smash hitbox, both characters will plummet to the bottom blast line.||In Smash 4, Cloud usually loses but may cause Sudden Death or even allow Cloud to win if he is low enough when he hits the opponent or if either character has high enough damage.
In Ultimate, Cloud always wins as long as the downward slash deals enough knockback.
|Hero||Ultimate||Hero's Kamikazee attack is a completely unique sacrificial attack that allows him to produce a large explosion capable of dealing immense knockback to all nearby characters, at the cost of instantly depleting one of his stocks. Unlike all other sacrificial KO moves, successful use of this attack is guaranteed to kill the user regardless of where on the stage they are.||Hero always loses.|
|Incineroar||Ultimate||"Incinicide" is executed with Cross Chop. If Incineroar uses Cross Chop offstage and hits an opponent with the meteor hitbox, both characters will plunge towards the bottom blast zone.||Incineroar always wins.|
|Ike||Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||On certain stages built with the Stage Builder, the usage of Great Aether can result in the move's diving conclusion falling through a hole and KOing Ike and all of his victims. This sacrificial KO can potentially be negated if enough opponents are trapped in the attack, as they will cause the "tip" of the Final Smash to hit the edge of the pit. Ike can also perform a sacrificial KO with Aether, as both Ike and his opponent plummet in a similar manner.||Sudden Death always occurs for Great Aether. Ike almost always loses using Aether in Smash 4; always wins in Ultimate as long as the falling slash deals enough knockback.|
|Little Mac||Smash 4||Using Jolt Haymaker offstage to hit an opponent can result in the foe getting KO'd at the side blast line due to the move's high knockback scaling. Little Mac is forced into helplessness once Jolt Haymaker is initiated, and unless the opponent is at medium-high percentages, this results in a net loss for Little Mac if his foe survives the hit and has a good recovery. Results in only Little Mac self-destructing if he mistimes the attack or the opponent air dodges.||Depends on who hits the blast line first. Little Mac can act after a Jolt Haymaker in Ultimate, technically removing the Sacrificial KO status, although Little Mac will often still fail to recover.|
|King Dedede||Brawl; Smash 4; Ultimate||King Dedede can perform another type of Dededecide via Super Dedede Jump's falling portion, which is a meteor smash that launches enemies downward at the same speed at which King Dedede himself falls.||In Brawl, King Dedede always wins. In Smash 4, King Dedede usually wins, but certain situations can cause him to cross the blast lines before the opponent, typically if they are at relatively low percents. In Ultimate, King Dedede always wins, as long as the falling portion deals enough knockback.|
|Olimar||Brawl; Smash 4||Similar to Ike's, certain custom stages can cause End of Day to force Olimar's ship to fall through a hole and KO him. Unless an opponent gets hit by the Meteor Smash of the ship's ascent, this is extremely likely to result in a net loss for Olimar.||N/A|
|Jigglypuff||Smash 4||In Super Smash Bros. 4, hitting an opponent with Rollout will cause Jigglypuff to bounce off the opponent and constantly spin in the air as it falls down to the ground; if no floor is available for it to land on, it is a form of a sacrificial KO, as the player cannot modify Jigglypuff's trajectory, unlike in Melee or Brawl.|
|Mii Brawler||Smash 4; Ultimate||Soaring Axe Kick's heel can drag down opponents along with them when it is used off-stage, resulting in both of their stocks lost. Head-On Assault can be used the same way, either offstage or after a jab cancel. It should be noted that using either special move while facing and positioned close to a ledge is technically not a sacrificial KO, as the Brawler will grab the ledge while their victim is left to plummet into the abyss. Note that in Ultimate, the descending attack of Soaring Axe Kick is optional.||Dependent on the height, damage percentage, and falling speed of the Brawler and their victim in Smash 4. In Ultimate, Mii Brawler always wins as long as the falling portion of both moves deals enough knockback.|
|Mii Swordfighter||Smash 4; Ultimate||Much like Climhazzard and Aether, the descent of Stone Scabbard will meteor smash opponents, but the Mii Swordfighter can be KO'd first if they do not grab the ledge after connecting the move.||In Smash 4, Mii Swordfighter almost always loses. In Ultimate, Mii Swordfighter always wins, as long as the falling portion deals enough knockback.|
|Pyra||Ultimate||Pyra can use Prominence Revolt to attempt a sacrificial KO by dragging the opponent down with her. However, the knockback inflicted by the descending hit is unusually low, to the point that opponents can usually make it back to the stage. Opponents with a poor recovery however will sometimes be gimped.||Pyra almost always loses due to the knockback of the falling portion generally not inflicting enough knockback to make the opponent pass the bottom blast line before her.|
|Sephiroth||Ultimate||Sephiroth can use Octaslash to drag an opponent towards a blast zone while offstage. He can either drag them directly past a blast zone to instantly KO them followed by himself, or simply move them closer to finish them with the final hit's knockback. This may also still gimp opponents at lower percents by moving them too low to recover or sending them underneath the stage, but Sephiroth will be left helpless.||Sephiroth always wins if the attack carries the opponent past a blast zone, especially the lower blast zone which will accept a downwards Octaslash's trajectory as a spike and eliminate the opponent before actually reaching the bottom. If he fails to cross this threshold, he will still usually win if the final hit deals enough knockback to KO off the side.|
|Shulk||Smash 4||Shulk can use Back Slash offstage to hit a recovering opponent with the move's high range. However, as Back Slash causes Shulk to fall extremely quickly, this often results in a net loss for Shulk unless his active Monado Art is Smash and the opponent is at an extremely high percentage. Positioning to hit an opponent's back as they recover can stage spike them and cause them to be KO'd faster than Shulk's falling speed, although the opponent can be sent back onto the stage again if they do not hit the stage's sides. Air Slash can also cause a sacrificial KO when using the Jump Art after a chain of forward aerials, which can KO opponents at the side blast lines and leaves Shulk helpless regardless if it is successful.||Shulk is usually KO'd first with Back Slash. Air Slash is dependent on the positioning. In Ultimate, Shulk can act after a Back Slash, albeit not for a long time.|
|Wario||Brawl; Smash 4||When Wario uses his Final Smash to become Wario-Man, if the opponent is at 40% or higher, he can use his Wario Bike to suicide into the opponent. (Wario can jump off if quick enough, but jumping off will still shoot Wario forward a little, so Wario needs to jump off before he reaches the edge of the screen.)||Wario always wins.|
- Risky meteor smashes or off-stage aerials generally do not count as sacrificial KOs; the term implies that it is the move that KOs the user, not the fact that the user could not recover after using the move. It should be noted that with stall-then-fall attacks the user is nearly guaranteed to be KO'd unless they perform the aerial very high up.
- Using a move that KOs an opponent in addition to one's teammate (or one's partner Ice Climber) can be considered a sacrificial KO in some ways, with the main difference being that it is not self-sacrificial.
- Sometimes, Olimar's Pikmin-based attacks will require him to throw a Pikmin off the ledge in order to land a KO. In this case, the loss for Olimar is not equivalent to stock, and it is generally not considered a sacrificial KO, though it involves a level of "sacrifice".
- Though very uncommon due to how it's set up, characters with throws that send them and their opponents briefly above the upper blast line (Charizard, Kirby, and Meta Knight) can be used to perform a Sacrificial KO if an item or projectile acts on the characters at the apex of the throw. An example is if Mega Man's Crash Bomber is attached to either character and explodes at the right time during the throw.
In tournament play
While rare due to a relatively limited character pool, sacrificial KOs have their own rules within tournaments: if both the victim and initiator are KOed on their last stock because of a sacrificial KO, the results screen is ignored and the initiator is deemed the winner. This rule, however, has been disputed, with some players claiming that the winner of the game should be determined by the game and not by observers.
Additionally, as mentioned earlier for Smash 4, every character except Ganondorf releases their opponent after they SD, allowing some characters to return to the stage, making this ruling even more questionable. One rule that is seen in some tournaments states that if both players die at the same time (whether a sacrificial KO or not), a tiebreaker match (usually 1 stock, 3 minutes) is to be played on the same stage played before to determine the official winner of the match, ignoring sudden death altogether. Another rule that forgoes tiebreaker matches favors the initiator if the KO results in Sudden Death, but the win is otherwise awarded to whoever is declared the winner on the results screen.
- If a Sacrificial KO is performed on a Subspacial clone in the Great Maze while the player is on their last stock and holding an item, the player will reappear in the area they were previously in, no music will be played, and after a few seconds, the screen fades into the Continue screen.