SSBU Icon.png

Samus (SSBU)

From SmashWiki, the Super Smash Bros. wiki
This article is about Samus's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. For the character in other contexts, see Samus.
Samus
in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Samus SSBU.png
MetroidSymbol.svg
Universe Metroid
Other Smash Bros. appearances in SSB
in Melee
in Brawl
in SSB4
Availability Starter
Final Smash Zero Laser
SamusHeadSSBU.png
With her Charge Shot, Missile and Bomb, Samus has three different projectiles to keep her opponents in check from a distance. When fully charged up, her Charge Shot is quite powerful. For her Final Smash, she launches a wide laser beam that can be moved up and down!
Super Smash Blog, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Official Site

Samus (サムス, Samus) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. She was suggested to appear on the then-unnamed Ultimate's announcement trailer, and officially confirmed in the gameplay trailer on June 12, 2018 during E3 2018. She retains her modified Metroid: Other M design from Smash 4 and is classified as fighter #04.

Attributes

Samus is a heavyweight unique among others. She is a floaty character with slightly below average walking and dashing speeds, average air speed, above average air acceleration, high jump height and slow falling speed. These attributes grant her an easier time chasing aerial opponents and forcing air dodges, yet also cause her to be juggled rather easily. When combined with her few reliable landing options and slow falling speed, opponents will also have more time to punish Samus as she attempts to return to the stage.

Samus' moveset consists of playing defensively, as she uses her projectiles to space, rack up damage from a distance and pressure shields. Charge Shot is her most consistent KOing option out of her special moves when fully charged, due to its speed and power. Missile is mostly used for spacing, due to neither its Homing or Super variants being extremely inefficient at KOing, while Bomb grants Samus various mix-ups and can aid her recovery. However, Missile and Bomb also possess valuable utility, in that they can guarantee a shield break when used in conjunction with a sufficiently charged Charge Shot or a sweetspotted back aerial. Lastly, Screw Attack is a decent out of shield option, a KOing option near the upper blast line and a viable combo finisher from aerial combo strings.

In addition, Samus has a strong air game. The changes to air dodges have benefitted her overall, as they notably improve her ability to edgeguard (especially with moves such as forward aerial or her renowed Charge Shot), while she isn't hindered as much due to her fast air speed, the ability to stall mid-air using her Bombs, and her Grapple Beam tether recovery's long range. All of Samus' aerials have no more than 20 frames of landing lag, and her back aerial is one of her best moves courtesy of its power, damage output, speed and range. Her down aerial can be a powerful meteor smash, forward aerial is a good pressuring tool due to its long duration, and up aerial is an excellent combo option. Lastly, her neutral aerial is a viable KOing option. When coupled with her high jumps, Samus' air game is also potent while she is off-stage, as she can recover from nearly anywhere on the stage, stay in position for longer periods of time due to her floatiness, or bait the opponent by stalling in the air and punishing edge-guard attempts.

Samus' grab game is also somewhat useful, as her Grapple Beam has impressive range, doubles as a tether recovery and has very little landing lag. Down throw is very useful for starting combos that deal respectable damage and can be used with her neutral, forward and up aerials at varying percentages. Many of her combos can rack up more than 30% and when using platforms to her advantage, or string together multiple times and then be finished with Screw Attack, leading to a KO or dealing 40%-50% at the very least. Up throw has decent to good KO power, becoming Samus' strongest throw. Lastly, forward and back throw can KO earlier at the ledge.

However, Samus has noticeable flaws. Samus' ground game is mediocre overall as her smash attacks are punishable, with only her forward smash being a fairly reliable KOing option due to its quick start-up lag. Her neutral attack is very mediocre, which is noticeably exemplified in its inability to connect at high percentages and thus limits Samus' anti-pressuring ability. Due to this and her average dashing speed, most Samus players will often find themselves in the air, where her strengths lie.

Samus also has issues with her recovery. Her grab aerial has very long range, her jumps are among the highest in the game, Screw Attack is fast and hard to punish, and Bomb jumping provides infinite horizontal recovery, but they are all offset by Screw Attack's only average distance, Bomb's high ending lag in the air and Samus' only average air speed and reliance on her grab aerial to grab ledges from a distance. Altogether, this results in her recovery being slightly slow, linear and predictable.

Overall, Samus is a character that performs best when using her projectiles and grab aerial for spacing in order to set up combos and either finish off pressured opponents off-stage, or KO them outright with Charge Shot. Unlike the majority of veterans, Samus' optimal playstyle is highly unorthodox; as she falls short in regard to zoning-exclusive or melee-exclusive offense, success with Samus requires careful, calculated use of her various tools to keep momentum in her favor. As such, she is a character that is hard to master, but greatly rewards patient and calculated play.

Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4

Samus has historically been a lower-ranking character in the Smash Bros. series, with most of her incarnations (except Melee and post-patch SSB4) infamously considered low tier in their respective games. Even after being heavily buffed via patches, at the end of SSB4's metagame, Samus ended up as a low-mid tier character (tied with Robin for 37th out of 55). Likely as a result of this, Samus has been significantly buffed overall in the transition to Ultimate.

Samus' largest buffs come from the improvements made to her grab game and her repertoire of projectiles. Historically considered among the most lackluster grab games despite her grabs' long range and her down throw's excellent combo ability, all of Samus' throws have increased utility on top of dealing more damage and knockback; up throw is now her strongest throw and a viable KO option at high percents, down throw has increased combo potential due to its lower ending lag, and both forward and back throws can KO easier when close to an edge. Adding to this, Bombs explode earlier on contact with enemies, Missiles deal more damage and have less ending lag, while Super Missiles deal more knockback and stall for a longer time before flying forward, greatly improving their use for trapping; and most notably, Charge Shot can now be charged in the air, used as a combo tool due to Samus' improved mobility and its lower ending lag, and deals greater damage and knockback, which gives Samus more opportunities to charge up her most threatening move. In bulk, all of these changes have significantly strengthened her zoning and punish game. Other buffs to Samus also include many of her up-close moves dealing more knockback, most notably her down tilt, dash attack and down smash, improving her KO ability; and her previously slow and punishable roll was also notably increased in speed, making it more usable as an escape option.

Samus also benefits considerably from the universal changes to the engine. The reduced landing lag and weakening of shields makes her aerials safer to use for approaching despite their lower shieldstun. As with most other veterans, her mobility has been improved, which coupled with the ability to the ability to use any attack out of a run, the miscellaneous buffs to her standard moves and their relatively fast frame data, and the increased shieldstun, grants her a much safer close quarters game. The changes to air dodges have benefitted her overall, as they notably improve her ability to edgeguard (especially with moves such as forward aerial or her renowed Charge Shot), while she isn't hindered as much due to her fast air speed, the ability to stall mid-air using her Bombs, and her Grapple Beam tether recovery's long range. Finally, the universal changes to grabs have beneffited her likely the most of any character, as not only do her grabs now have less ending lag relative to the rest of the cast, but her standing and pivot grabs now have less ending lag as well, which further improves her grab game.

However, Samus has received nerfs that, while fewer in comparison to her buffs, have drastically affected her playstyle. The most notable is her dash attack; previously an excellent combo tool and often considered her best move, it has received higher ending lag and a more horizontal angle that prevent it from comboing, in lieu of its significantly increased power, thus repurposing it into a generic KO move with more situational use and removing her best close quarters offensive option. Furthermore, her neutral attack, infamous for its inability to connect both hits at most percents, has been made even worse by the lower knockback on the first hit and its slower transition into the second hit, removing its most reliable setups at higher percents and rendering the second hit nearly useless. Her up smash, infamous for its usual inability to connect all hits reliably, has less range, higher SDI multipliers, and no longer has set knockback, making it more inconsistent. Finally, her up aerial has increased landing lag and its looping hits inflict lower hitstun, almost completely removing the move's combo and setup potential.

In terms of indirect changes, Samus is one of the characters to be hindered the most by the nerfs to rage; not only does the lower total multiplier make it slightly harder for Samus to close out a stock if she is able to endure a hit, the fact rage doesn't apply to set knockback removes her ability to KO at very early percents by setting up a Screw Attack with high rage (which was a commonly exploitable tactic in conjunction with her dash attack). Lastly, of further note is that some of Samus' most noticeable weaknesses from previous games remain, such as a lackluster close quarters game in comparison to her spacing and zoning games, her moveset's high ending lag leaving her prone to punishment, her susceptibility to being juggled, and a vulnerable recovery despite her access to a tether option.

Overall, Samus' changes and buffs have improved her playstyle's most noticeable attributes in her zoning and long-ranged options, and her heightened offensive power and the changes to gameplay mechanics give her more opportunities to take advantage of this playstyle, though because of the nerfs to her more polarized offensive options, Samus now relies on a more patient playstyle than before. Regardless, her changes have allowed her to veer closer to a balanced, long range-based "mighty glacier" similar to Link, with potent KO ability, generally well-rounded attributes with a high endurance but below-average mobility overall, and a focus on hard-hitting punishes and combos at both long and mid-range while having difficulty dealing with rushdown and disjoints, which evokes her very projectile-heavy fighting style in her home series. Additionally, she is even stronger in doubles, where a teammate can take advantage of her projectiles and trapping. Together with her Echo Fighter Dark Samus, Samus's results have developed more rapidly than they did in SSB4, with players such as Joker, Parme and quiK achieving respectable results with her at the high and top levels of competitive play. Samus is therefore considered to be better relative to the cast than in SSB4, and is near-universally considered to be a high-mid or high-tier character, much like her incarnation in Melee.

Aesthetics

  • Change Due to the aesthetic used in Ultimate, Samus has a sleeker design, and her overall color scheme is significantly more vibrant, now matching her color scheme from Metroid: Samus Returns. The Varia Suit's black vents are much more defined and detailed, and her visor is more opaque; it along with the suit's accents are lime green rather than emerald like in Brawl.
  • Change Samus's eighth costume, formerly based on Dark Samus, has been replaced with a black and yellow costume due to Dark Samus's inclusion as a playable fighter.
  • Change Samus's idle animation is altered slightly; she faces the foreground at an angle instead of facing directly forward, and her Arm Cannon is positioned slightly lower.
  • Change Air dodge's animation has changed.
  • Change Samus emits sparks whenever she takes damage. This is shared with Dark Samus, R.O.B., and Mega Man, all of which are mechanical-based fighters.
  • Change Samus has two new victory poses and one slightly modified:
    • Change She fires a Super Missile and strikes a pose similar to her official artwork.
    • Change She lands on the ground and readies her arm cannon.
    • Change Samus retains her up-inputted victory pose, however the shots resemble the shotgun blast from her Melee Charge Shot custom move from SSB4 rather than small explosions.

Attributes

  • Buff Like all characters, Samus's jumpsquat animation takes 3 frames to complete (down from 4).
  • Buff Samus runs faster (1.504 → 1.654).
    • Buff Samus's initial dash is slightly faster (1.86 → 1.87). However, it is much slower relative to the cast.
  • Buff Samus's air speed is faster (1.03 → 1.103).
  • Buff Samus reaches the maximum height of her jumps more quickly.
  • Change Samus has a slightly faster falling speed (1.3 → 1.33).
  • Buff Samus's fast falling speed is faster (2.08 → 2.168). This improves her air mobility and makes her less susceptible to juggles.
  • Buff Samus's traction is higher (0.0585 → 0.082 ).
  • Buff Forward roll has less ending lag (FAF 40 → 35).
  • Nerf Forward roll grants less intangibility (frames 4-23 → 4-19).
  • Nerf Back roll has more startup and grants less intangibility (frames 4-23 → 5-20).
  • Buff Air dodge grants more intangibility (frames 3-27 → 3-29).
  • Nerf Air dodge has significantly more ending lag (FAF 33 → 57).
  • Change Samus's stunned animation no longer has her shake erratically, as if her suit was malfunctioning.

Ground attacks

  • Neutral attack:
    • Buff The first hit has a lower hitlag multiplier (1× → 0.8×).
    • Nerf The first hit has reduced knockback to keep opponents closer to Samus (8 base/80/100 scaling → 20/15), akin to other neutral attacks. However, unlike the case with other characters, this is a nerf for Samus as it further worsens the first hit's ability to true combo into the second hit at higher percents, while also hindering its jab cancel setups.
    • Nerf The first hit transitions slower into the second hit (frame 13 → 15).
    • Buff The first hit has gained a hitstun modifier of 4, increasing its safety on hit at low percents, although due to the aforementioned changes, it still fails to truly connect into the second hit.
  • Forward tilt:
    • Buff Forward tilt has three different hitboxes instead of four, no longer possessing a sourspot that deals 7% (8% if angled). This makes its damage output more consistent.
    • Buff The sourspot deals more knockback (20 base/70 scaling → 30/80), increasing its safety on hit and KO potential.
  • Up tilt:
  • Down tilt:
    • Buff Down tilt has increased knockback scaling (48 → 65), giving the move KO potential against middleweights under 160%, compared to being unable to KO under 200% in Smash 4. This change brings it closer to its Brawl strength.
    • Nerf It has more ending lag (FAF 40 → 45).
  • Dash attack:
    • Buff Dash attack has increased knockback scaling (60 → 90), allowing the clean hit KOing middleweights at around 150% from the center of Final Destination.
    • Buff The early hit no longer deals less damage than the clean hit (7% → 10%), which makes the hits only differ in hitbox size.
    • Nerf It has drastically more ending lag (FAF 34 → 42), removing its combo potential entirely.
    • Change It launches at a more horizontal angle (75° → 55°), which hinders its combo and juggling potential, but further assists in its KO ability near edges.
    • Change It produces a visual effect similar to the Shinespark ability from Super Metroid.
  • Forward smash:
    • Buff Forward smash's innermost hitbox is larger (2.2u → 3.3u), allowing Samus to hit short nearby opponents more easily.
  • Up smash:
    • Buff Up smash has a different kind of autolink angle (366° → 368°), and the second to fourth hits use weight-independent knockback (although not on all hitboxes), allowing it to connect more reliably when used out of a run, and making it more consistent across characters.
    • Buff The last hit has more knockback scaling (150 → 162), improving its KO potential.
    • Nerf The hitboxes aren't placed as far horizontally (X offset: 9u/9u/-1u → -3.5u/6.5u/6.5u (hit 1), 7.3u/9u/-1u → -3.5u/6.5u/6.5u (hits 2-4), 9u/-1u → -3.5u/7.8u (hit 5)), and all except the last hit's are smaller (5.5u/5.5u/4u → 4.5u/5u/5u (hit 1), 6u/5.5u/4u → 4.5u/5u/5u (hits 2-3), 6u/6u/4u → 4u/5u/5u (hit 4)), reducing the move's range.
    • Nerf It has a higher SDI multiplier (0.8× → 1×), and the first to fourth hits no longer use set knockback. Coupled with the aforementioned hitbox changes, this causes the move to connect less reliably overall.
  • Down smash:
    • Buff Down smash has drastically increased knockback scaling (46/48 (front/back) → 70/68), with the front hit and back hit KOing at around 160% and 138% (respectively) from the center of Final Destination. It is no longer the weakest smash attack in the game by a considerable margin.
    • Change It has an altered ending animation, with Samus retaining more momentum from the kick.

Aerial attacks

  • Buff All aerials except up aerial have less landing lag (16 frames → 9 (neutral), 24 → 14 (forward), 18 → 14 (back), 20 → 12 (down)).
  • Neutral aerial:
    • Buff Neutral aerial's second hit comes out faster (frame 16 → 14).
      • Nerf However, its total duration remains the same, increasing its ending lag.
  • Forward aerial:
    • Buff The first hit has altered angles (80°/280°/60° → 367°/18°), while the first to fourth hits deal more set knockback (15 → 25 (hit 1), 30 → 35/40 (hits 2-4)). These changes overall improve its linking capabilities.
    • Change The first four hits have a lower hitlag multiplier (1× → 0.8×), but a higher SDI multiplier (0.8× → 1×).
  • Back aerial:
    • Nerf Back aerial has more ending lag (FAF 39 → 42).
    • Change It has a slightly different animation. Samus faces further behind herself while kicking and curls in her leg afterwards.
  • Up aerial:
    • Change Up aerial deals five total hits, down from six.
    • Buff The first four hits' feet hitboxes use the autolink angle (361° → 367°) and set knockback (0 base/130 scaling → 25 set/100 scaling), allowing them to connect more reliably.
    • Buff The hits after the first are faster (frame 8, 11, 14, 17, 20 → 7, 10, 13, 16).
      • Nerf However, the move's total duration remains unchanged, giving it more ending lag and making it harder to combo multiple up aerials.
    • Nerf Up aerial has more landing lag (12 frames → 18).
    • Nerf The first four hits' leg hitbox deals much more set knockback (30 → 90) and launches at a higher angle (80° → 84°); however, it has gained a hitstun modifier of -10. As a result, and combined with its increased landing lag, it connects less reliably into the following hits without having increased combo potential.
    • Nerf Due to its lower amount of hits, it deals less total damage (11% → 10.9%), despite the second to fourth hits dealing more damage (1% → 1.3%).
    • Nerf Its initial auto-cancel window is shorter (frames 1-4 → 1-2).
    • Change The last hit has a higher hitlag multiplier (1x → 1.8×).
    • Change The last hit has an altered animation, with Samus thrusting her foot upward.
  • Down aerial:
    • Buff The removal of teching for grounded meteor smashes improves down aerial's combo potential onstage, compounded further by its reduced landing lag.
    • Nerf The late hit deals less damage (11% → 10%) with no compensation on knockback, hindering its KO potential.
  • Grab aerial:
    • Buff Grab aerial deals more damage (1.5% → 2.5% (hit 1), 3% → 4% (hit 2)).
    • Buff The second hit has a slightly longer duration (frames 16-17 → 16-19).
    • Nerf It causes the Grapple Beam to retract upon hitting an opponent, hindering its utility in battles with multiple opponents.
    • Change The tip of the Grapple Beam stays in place instead of following Samus's vertical movement, similar to how it behaved in Melee.

Throws and other attacks

  • Grabs:
    • Buff Standing grab has less startup (frame 16 → 15).
    • Buff Standing and pivot grab have less ending lag, especially the latter (FAF 70 → 60 (standing), 84 → 63 (pivot)).
    • Nerf Dash and pivot grab have more startup (frame 16 → 17 (dash), 17 → 18 (pivot)).
  • Pummel:
    • Buff Pummel deals slightly more damage (1.2% → 1.3%).
    • Nerf It has less startup (frame 3 → 1) and ending lag (FAF 9 → 7), but deals much more hitlag (4 frames → 14), drastically increasing its effective duration. This hinders its damage racking ability, no longer being one of the fastest pummels in the game.
  • Buff All throws deal more damage (9% → 10% (forward), 8% → 10% (back), 9% → 12% (up), 6% → 8% (down)).
    • Buff Forward and back throw's knockback was not compensated, improving their KO potential.
  • Change Samus's forward, back and up throws are no longer weight-dependent.
  • Change Forward, back and down throws use the electric effect, much like in Smash 64.
  • Up throw:
    • Change Samus has a new up throw: she blasts her opponent upward with her arm cannon. It uses the flame effect, and consists of two hits instead of six, with its damage being redistributed (1% (hits 1-5), 4% (throw) → 5% (hit 1), 7% (throw)).
    • Buff It has increased knockback scaling (70 → 80) on top of its higher damage, making it powerful enough to KO middleweights under 170%.
    • Buff It releases opponents faster (frame 28 → 16), making it harder to DI. Opponents are also released closer to Samus.
      • Nerf However, its total duration remains the same, increasing its ending lag.
  • Down throw:
    • Buff Down throw releases opponents one frame slower (frame 20 → 21), but has less ending lag (FAF 42 → 38). Combined with Samus's faster jumpsquat and jump speed, this noticeably improves its combo potential.
    • Buff It has lower base knockback (80 → 60), but higher knockback scaling (50 → 75). This gives it new followup options at low percents, such as a dash attack and dashing up smash, without hindering its combo potential at higher percents due to the aforementioned changes.
    • Change It launches at a slightly lower angle (80° → 74°).
  • Edge attack:
    • Buff Edge attack deals more damage (7% → 9%).

Special moves

  • Charge Shot:
    • Buff Charge Shot can be charged in midair. It can also be charge-canceled by jumping or spot dodging.
    • Buff It has less ending lag when not fully charged (FAF 54 → 45).
    • Buff It deals more damage (3%-25% → 5%-28%), with altered knockback on the fully charged shot (30 base/62 scaling → 46/50), making it stronger overall.
    • Buff It can be B-reversed.
    • Nerf Charge-canceling the move incurs 4 frames of lag, rather than being instantaneous.
    • Nerf It has received negative shield damage (0 → -2.5 (uncharged), -7 (fully charged)), weakening fully charged shots' ability to break shields.
    • Change Charge Shot can be fired by pressing the attack button.
  • Missile:
    • Buff Both Homing Missiles and Super Missiles deal more damage (5% → 8% (Homing), 10% → 12% (Super)) without compensation on knockback, improving the KO ability of Super Missiles.
    • Buff Both types of Missiles have slightly less ending lag (FAF 57 → 55 (Homing), 59 → 58 (Super)).
    • Buff Super Missiles travel faster and stall initially before flying forward, similar to the Turbo Missile custom move from Smash 4. This allows them to effectively stay out for a longer time, improving their camping potential.
    • Buff Samus can drift horizontally after firing a Missile in midair, and Missiles don't halt her aerial momentum.
    • Change Missiles have updated designs. When firing a missile, Samus's visor and armor lights flash blue in reference to Samus's palette when Missiles are selected in the original Metroid.
  • Screw Attack:
    • Buff Screw Attack has less lag before Samus begins falling.
    • Buff Grounded Screw Attack has less startup (frame 5 → 4), making it more effective out of shield.
    • Buff The looping hits have a lower hitlag multiplier (1× → 0.5×), and a lower SDI multiplier for the aerial version (1× → 0.5×), allowing them to transition faster and making them harder to escape.
    • Buff The last hit has a slightly larger hitbox (9.6u → 10u), allowing it to connect better from the looping hits.
    • Nerf Due to rage being changed to not affect set knockback, the linking hits of Screw Attack can no longer KO off the top blast line at low percents, removing Samus's early KO setups.
    • Change Grounded Screw Attack deals up to nine hits instead of eleven, but has increased damage on its first hit (2% → 3%) and last hit (1% → 2%).
      • Buff The last hit's knockback was not fully compensated (50 base/240 scaling → 56/190), slightly improving its KO potential.
    • Change The grounded version's last hit has a higher hitlag multiplier (2× → 2.5×).
    • Change The move uses unique sound effects on hit, rather than standard "kick" sound effects.
  • Bomb:
    • Buff Bombs explode earlier on contact (frame 22).
  • Zero Laser:
    • Buff When Samus unleashes Zero Laser, the jets on the back of her suit vent flames as exhaust, which deal damage.

Update history

Samus has received a mix of buffs and nerfs via game updates being buffed overall.

Update 2.0.0 increased the range of Samus' Missile, which allows her to space better and deal damage at safer ranges, though the move has increased ending lag when used in the air (no longer being faster than Dark Samus' version). Additionally, Bomb is less laggy when grounded, which allows her to act out of it more effectively, and reduces her chances of getting punished.

However, the nerfs to the shield damage of various projectiles in update 3.0.0 affect Samus more negatively than most other characters, as she can no longer use her Charge Shot to apply shield pressure as effectively as she could in previous versions, reducing its potency.

Update 7.0.0 would later provide Samus with more substantial changes, with all of them being buffs. Her shield size was considerably increased (which was a change other characters received). Her dash attack's early hitbox deals 3% more damage, making it stronger. Up and down smash, and her up throw all deal more knockback. And finally, her aerial Grapple Beam deals more damage and has a longer hitbox duration, slightly improving her spacing game.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 2.0.0

  • Bug fix Missiles follow the Pokémon Trainer's new Pokémon if they switch after the missile was fired.
  • Buff Missile has more range.
  • Nerf Aerial Missile has slightly more ending lag (frame 59 → 61), no longer being less laggy than Dark Samus's version.
  • Buff Bomb has less endlag when used on the ground.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.0.0

  • Nerf Charge Shot deals significantly less shield damage.
  • Bug fix Samus no longer launches herself off screen when grab and Bomb occur at the same time.
    • Nerf However, the phantom knockback would still occur at the exact frame of the hitbox and the explosion.
  • Change Created visual glitch where Samus’s tether grab beam would disconnect from her arm when performed in the air before landing.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 3.1.0

  • Buff Up smash's hits connect more reliably.
  • Bug fix Fixed tether beam glitch from 3.0.0.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 4.0.0

  • Change The lag upon waking up from the sleep effect has been adjusted, matching the rest of the cast.
  • Bug fix Up smash's autolink angle knockback has been reduced, no longer launching opponents at an unusually high speed if the move fails to connect.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate 7.0.0

  • Buff Overall shield size has been increased by 1.025×.
  • Buff Dash attack's early hit no longer deals less damage than the main hit (7% → 10%).
  • Buff Up smash's last hit has more knockback scaling (150 → 162), noticeably improving its KO potential.
  • Buff Down smash has more knockback scaling (58 → 70 (hit 1), 58 → 68 (hit 2)), drastically improving its KO potential.
  • Buff Grab aerial deals more damage (1.5% → 2.5% (hit 1), 3% → 4% (hit 2)), and the second hit has a longer duration (frames 16-17 → 16-19).
  • Buff Up throw has more knockback scaling (72 → 80), drastically improving its KO potential.

Moveset

For a gallery of Samus' hitboxes, see here.

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

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack Straight and Cannon Hammer 3% A left-handed jab followed by a forearm club with the Arm Cannon. Despite dealing above-average damage for a neutral attack, it is poor overall, as opponents can usually act out before the second hit connects by shielding or using a fast attack, while the second hit may not even connect at high percentages. Depending on the opponent's weight, it is safe and a true combo at high percents, but only if the first hit connects relatively close to the arm and not at the fist. The second hit does have KO potential at very high percentages, however.
8%
Forward tilt   11% (foot), 10% (leg), 9% (body) A reverse roundhouse kick. Deals more damage and knockback at her foot, while her leg deals less damage and knockback. Can be angled, which causes it to deal more damage, but may cause it to miss shorter characters on the ground if angled up. The foot sweetspot deals rather potent knockback for a tilt attack, which can KO at the edge at around 125%. At varying percentages, depending on which part of the move is landed, it can lead into a guaranteed Charge Shot, as regardless of teching, Charge Shot can catch the opponent's option in time if they are knocked down.
10% (foot), 9% (leg), 8% (body)
11% (foot), 10% (leg), 9% (body)
Up tilt   13% (grounded), 12% (aerial) An axe kick, which is identical to Captain Falcon's up tilt. It behaves unusually as it meteor smashes grounded opponents, but launches aerial opponents at a horizontal angle. This allows it to set up combos against the former at a wide range of percents, while still being a reliable edgeguard tool, due to its wide coverage and powerful enough knockback to KO aerial opponents at around 95% at the edge. At high percents, the grounded meteor can also set up KO confirms into a fully charged Charge Shot. However, the move has noticeable startup, due to coming out on frame 15, making it Samus's slowest normal attack on the ground.
Down tilt   12% Kneels and quickly thrusts her Arm Cannon downward to fire a small, fiery blast. It is very fast, due to coming out on frame 6, and deals respectable damage and knockback for a tilt attack, KOing at around 160% off the top blast line. It is useful as a close range anti-pressure option on opponents in front of Samus, or as a punishment option. However, its very high ending lag leaves it easy to punish if shielded or missed.
Dash attack   10% (clean), 6% (late) A shoulder tackle with a white aura around Samus, similar to the Shinespark technique from her home series. Deals more damage and knockback near the middle of the attack, KOing opponents at around 150% from the center of Final Destination, and earlier near edges. However, the late hit is noticeably weaker, and the move lacks combo potential, especially compared to its previous appearance.
Forward smash   13% (Arm Cannon), 15% (blast) Quickly thrusts her Arm Cannon forward to fire a small, fiery blast. Functions similarly to Mario's forward smash, with the blast being the most powerful part of the move. It is one of the fastest forward smashes in the game, coming out on frame 10, while the blast has the highest knockback out of her smash attacks, KOing at around 100% from center stage. However, it is rather weak otherwise, with the Arm Cannon KOing at around 135% and the sourspot taking priority over the sweetspot. It can be angled like her forward tilt, with the upward angle dealing more damage and knockback, though it can typically miss as a result; conversely, the downward angle can hit ledge hanging opponents, but deals slightly less damage and knockback.
12% (Arm Cannon), 14% (blast)
11% (Arm Cannon), 13.5% (blast)
Up smash Cover Fire 3% (hits 1-4), 6% (hit 5) Fires five fiery blasts in an overhead arcing motion. True to its name, this move works best as an anti-air attack, as its multiple hits give a good amount of aerial protection. Conversely, it is unable to hit grounded opponents unless they are close enough to Samus. It is also her most damaging smash attack, dealing 18% total uncharged. However, due to its hits being spread above Samus, it can fail to fully connect if the opponent is hit from too far. If all 5 hits connect, it can KO middleweights at around 100% from ground level.
Down smash   10% (front), 12% (back) A legsweep. A semi-spike with decent speed and high base knockback, allowing it to set up edgeguards and punish rolls effectively. The front hit can KO middleweights center stage around 150%, with the back hit KOing even earlier at around 135%.
Neutral aerial   10% (hit 1), 9% (hit 2, clean), 8% (hit 2, late) A spinning roundhouse kick, similar to the aerial version of the Counter Attack from Metroid: Other M. Comes out in frame 8. Hits on both sides quickly and can autocancel with a short hop fast fall. Its front hit and sweetspotted back hit also deal powerful knockback, which makes it a viable KOing option offstage or near the edge, as well as a decent combo finisher and one of the strongest aerials of its type.
Forward aerial   3% (hit 1), 1.6% (hits 2-4), 5% (hit 5) Fires five fiery blasts in a slow, downward arcing motion. Fast, coming out on frame 6, thus having the second lowest startup lag of Samus's aerials. The first four hits drag opponents into the rest of the move using the autolink angle, with the last hit carrying the entire attack's knockback. Samus' main aerial move for both combos and protection. Extremely useful as an edge get-up option or against air dodges due to its multiple hits, and using the move immediately after a short hop can hit opponents with the last hit before Samus lands again. It's her only aerial that does not autocancels In a short hop.
Back aerial   14% (clean foot), 12% (clean leg), 9% (late) A back kick. It is fast and deals powerful knockback when sweetspotted, which makes it an excellent KOing option, especially when edgeguarding. When sweetspotted, it is among the strongest back aerials in the game, KOing at around 110% from center stage.
Up aerial   3% (hit 1), 1.3% (hits 2-5), 4% (hit 5) A diagonal corkscrew flying kick, hitting multiple times. It is her fastest aerial, due to coming out on frame 5. Grounded opponents can be hit by the last hitbox if Samus lands while starting the move in the air, although it is difficult to do so, and risky due to the move's high landing lag. It can be used as a follow-up after a dash attack, grounded up tilt, down aerial, or down throw, all of which can be followed up with another up aerial and/or can be finished off with a Screw Attack. On stages with platforms, it even has potential for a zero-to-death when using a platform to extend the combo. Can KO if used high enough and close to the blast line.
Down aerial   10% (early, late), 14% (clean) Swings her Arm Cannon in a downward arcing motion. Hitting with the move's trail meteor smashes opponents, while the edges of the move at the very start and end deal decent horizontal knockback. Autocancels from a short hop, and due to its relatively low ending lag, the meteor smash is excellent for starting combos on grounded opponents, much like her up tilt.
Grab aerial Grapple Beam 2.5% (hit 1), 4% (hit 2) Fires the Grapple Beam. A useful spacing option due to having only 8 frames of landing lag. It autocancels from a full hop and has impressive range, being the longest grab aerial in game. In addition to its recovery and spacing capabilities, it is good at setting up combos at close range upon landing, due to its low landing lag. Unlike in previous games, however, hitting an opponents causes the Grapple Beam to retract earlier, while not reducing the move's ending lag.
Grab Grapple Beam Fires the Grapple Beam. It has impressive range and is the longest tether grab in the game. However, it is tied with her Zero Suited form's grab as the second slowest in terms of ending lag, making it very punishable if missed.
Pummel   1.3% A palm strike. Has moderate damage and speed relative to other pummels.
Forward throw   10% Twirls the opponent overhead, then flings them forward. Although its knockback has been increased, it remains too weak for KOing at realistic percents, unless Samus has rage and is at the edge of the stage.
Back throw   10% Swings the opponent behind herself. Slightly more effective for KOing and setting up edgeguards than her forward throw, due to its lower launch angle.
Up throw   5% (hit 1), 7% (throw) Puts the opponent above herself and blasts them upward with her Arm Cannon. Samus's most damaging and strongest throw, possessing enough knockback to KO middleweights around 150% from ground level and without rage. At low percents, it can also combo into an up aerial against large characters, as well as Screw Attack against most characters, though the latter will only connect its hits reliably on a few characters.
Down throw   8% Swings the opponent high above her head, then slams them onto the ground. A reliable combo starter, with its followups including a dash attack, small step forward smash or dashing up smash at low percents, a neutral, back or up aerial up to mid percents, and a forward aerial up to high percents.
Floor attack (front)   7% Swings her Arm Cannon in front of herself and then fires a blast behind herself.
Floor attack (back)   7% Performs a low-level roundhouse kick.
Floor attack (trip)   5% Performs a shin kick in front of herself and then a back kick behind herself.
Edge attack   9% Performs a legsweep while climbing up.
Neutral special Charge Shot 5% (uncharged), 28% (fully charged) Charges a ball of energy and fires it. Boasts excellent KO potential when fully charged, and is a useful intercepting move at a low charge. KOs at 70%-110% depending on rage and the opponent's weight and DI. Can be used to break shields if used in conjunction with her neutral attack, up or down tilts, aerials, Bomb and Super Missile. When using her forward tilt to launch the opponent into tumbling, it can set up a guaranteed combo into Charge Shot regardless of the opponent's tech option, as Charge Shot will always catch their tech direction.
Side special Missile 8% (Homing), 12% (Super) Fires a Missile, which homes in on the opponent. If the special button is tapped like a smash attack, Samus will instead fire a Super Missile, which stays in place for a short while before traveling in a straight line, and deals more damage and knockback. Both variations deal low knockback, but can be used to break a shield if used in conjunction with a fully charged Charge Shot. Both Missile variations can also be used as set-ups by opening up an opportunity for a grab aerial, or Charge Shot, while the Super variation sets up better for a true combo into a forward jumping Charge Shot at high percentages. The Homing variation is also useful for catching recoveries and forcing air dodges, which can open up punishment opportunities.
Up special Screw Attack 3% (grounded hit 1), 1% (grounded hits 2-8), 2% (grounded hit 9), 1% (aerial hits 1-12) Leaps upward to perform a high-speed somersault while discharging energy. Shoots upward if initiated from the ground, while it gains distance slower if started in the air. A useful out of shield option, due to coming out on frame 4 on the ground, and deals good knockback that can KO around 100% while near the upper blast line.
Down special Bomb 4% (contact), 5% (explosion) Rolls into her Morph Ball form and drops a Bomb, which explodes after a set time. Useful to force an opponent to shield and for edgeguarding, being capable of 2 frame punishes if timed correctly. It can also break shields depending on their health if used along with her up and down tilts or a fully charged Charge Shot.
Final Smash Zero Laser 0.5% (fringe loop), 1.5% (main loop), 2.5% (fringe blast), 5.5% (main blast) Fires a very large, bluish white energy beam. The beam can be angled vertically during the Final Smash.

On-screen appearance

Arrives from a Save Station.

Taunts

  • Up taunt: Salutes vigorously with her left arm as her thrusters activate.
  • Side taunt: Faces the screen and changes her Arm Cannon to its Zero Laser configuration.
  • Down taunt: Aims her Arm Cannon behind herself, then kneels while aiming it in front of herself.

Idle poses

  • Rubs her Arm Cannon with one finger.
  • Brings her Arm Cannon down and then pulls it back up.

Victory poses

  • Left: Lands on the ground and readies her Arm Cannon.
  • Up: Fires multiple shots from her Arm Cannon while kneeling, then strikes a pose. The pose is based on her appearance on the cover of Metroid II: Return of Samus.
  • Right: Fires a Super Missile and strikes a pose similar to her official artwork.
A flourished remix of the theme that would play when Samus Aran obtained a new power-up or addition to her Power Suit. It would also play when Samus defeated Ridley or Kraid.

In competitive play

Initial impressions of Samus in Ultimate were very negative, primarily because she had lost the combo potential of her dash attack, one of her most useful tools in Smash 4, along with her general lack of aesthetic or mechanical changes compared to fellow veterans such as Link (her unsafe jab, seemingly unchanged from Smash 4 and once again acknowledged in in-game tips, was a common point of mockery). This led players to believe that Samus had stagnated from her Smash 4 incarnation, and many pre-release tier lists ranked Samus as one of the worst characters in the game (or even the single worst) based on initial impressions.

However, as the game launched and time went on, Samus began to amass some results and improve her reputation more quickly than in Smash 4, largely due to her improved projectile game and KO potential; until her nerfs in version 3.0.0, many people cited her terrifying shield-break potential with Charge Shot as one of her primary strengths. While said nerfs have made shield breaks more difficult to pull off using the character, Samus retained her other previous strengths and weaknesses and benefited from the nerfs to some of her most difficult matchups such as Wolf, Olimar and Pichu, causing her loss of shield break setups to only become a slight nerf in the long run. As such, Samus' results continue to be moderately successful for her low representation, particularly when combined with her Echo Fighter Dark Samus, who is preferred by some players over the original Samus due to her marginally better hitboxes and roll. While considered for a long time to be a semi-viable mid-tier character, some players even went as far as to claim that Samus may be high-tier, or nearly just as good as she was in Melee where she was ranked among the top 10, an opinion that became more widespread after a string of tournament successes by Joker and especially quiK, and after her buffs in Version 7.0.0.

Notable players

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.

Active

Inactive

  • USA ESAM (#14) - Formerly used her as a secondary at many locals and placed 13th at Glitch 6. Has multiple wins over MVD.

Classic Mode: Another Planet, Another Bounty

Samus' congratulations screen.

The opponents Samus faces are akin to the battles that she has faced throughout the Metroid series. In addition, all of the battles take place on stages from the Metroid universe.

Round Opponent Stage Music Notes
1 Wolf WolfHeadSSBU.png Brinstar Title Theme - Metroid
2 Giant King K. Rool KingKRoolHeadSSBU.png Brinstar (Ω form) Brinstar Depths References Samus' battles with Kraid
3 R.O.B. (x6) ROBHeadGreySSBU.pngROBHeadSSBU.pngROBHeadYellowSSBU.pngROBHeadPurpleSSBU.pngROBHeadBlueSSBU.pngROBHeadGreenSSBU.png Brinstar Depths Brinstar (Melee)
4 Giant Ridley RidleyHeadSSBU.png Norfair Vs. Ridley References Samus' battles with Ridley
5 Mewtwo MewtwoHeadSSBU.png, Bowser BowserHeadSSBU.png, and Charizard CharizardHeadSSBU.png Norfair (Ω form) Multiplayer - Metroid Prime 2: Echoes
6 Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadSSBU.png Frigate Orpheon Vs. Parasite Queen References Samus' battle with Dark Samus
Bonus Stage
Final Master Hand Final Destination Master Hand (Less than 7.0 intensity)
Master Hand / Crazy Hand (7.0 or higher intensity)
On Intensity 7.0 or higher, Crazy Hand teams up with Master Hand.

Credits roll after completing Classic Mode. Completing it as Samus has Ending - Metroid accompany the credits.

Character unlock tree

Samus' Classic Mode character unlock tree includes the following characters in order:

  1. Inkling
  2. Wii Fit Trainer
  3. Pit
  4. Incineroar
  5. Dark Samus
  6. Cloud
  7. Wario
  8. Dark Pit

Each character can be unlocked by clearing Samus' Classic Mode, or the Classic Mode of any preceding character, if all preceding characters have been unlocked. Once all the above characters are unlocked, clearing Classic Mode with any of them will default to Mario's character unlock tree, starting with Sonic.

Role in World of Light

Finding Samus in World of Light

Samus was among the fighters summoned to the cliffside to fight an army of Master Hands.

During the opening cutscene, Samus was present when Galeem unleashed his beams of light. Samus attempted to fight back against the beams by shooting them with her arm cannon, but to no avail. Samus was vaporized and placed under Galeem's imprisonment alongside the rest of the fighters (except for Kirby).

In gameplay, Zero Suit Samus has a separate awakening battle from Samus.

Samus can be found blocking the path of the bridge once engulfed in light and a location reminiscent of Pac-Maze. Defeating her is necessary to progress through the story, making her an obligatory unlock.

Samus is later seen among several other fighters, making their last stand against Galeem and Dharkon. She also shows up in the ending where Galeem emerges victorious against Dharkon, witnessing Galeem engulf the world in light.

Fighter Battle

No. Image Name Type Power Stage Music
04
Samus SSBU.png
Samus Shield 7,500 Brinstar (Ω form) Title Theme - Metroid


Spirits

Samus's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Samus in World of Light allows the player to preview the first spirit below in the Spirit List under the name "???". As a Fighter Spirit, it cannot be used in Spirit Battles and is purely aesthetic. Each Fighter Spirit has an alternate version that replaces them with their artwork in Ultimate.

Additionally, Samus makes an appearance in various Primary and Support Spirits. Note that Zero Suit Samus' Fighter Spirit is not listed here due to her status as a separate playable character (despite the fact that she is the puppet/possessed fighter who represents Young Samus).

In Spirits battles

As the main opponent

Spirit Battle parameters
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music
269
Samusgravity.png
Gravity Suit Metroid Series Samus SamusHeadPurpleSSBU.png
Shield
3,800 Castle Siege (Underground Cavern) •Hazard: High Gravity •Your jumping power decreases Sector 1
276
Chozo Statue.png
Chozo Statue Metroid Series Samus SamusHeadBrownSSBU.png
Grab
3,600 Brinstar •Item: Screw Attack •The enemy starts the battle with a Screw Attack Brinstar Depths (Melee)
293
SSBU Spirits Kanden.png
Kanden Metroid Series Samus SamusHeadGreenSSBU.png
Attack
1,700 Brinstar •Item: Motion-Sensor Bomb •The enemy is easily distracted by items Psycho Bits
294
SSBU Spirits Trace.png
Trace Metroid Series Samus SamusHeadPinkSSBU.png
Attack
1,900 Norfair (Battlefield form) •Invisibility •The enemy is invisible Psycho Bits
896
Skullman.png
Skull Man Mega Man Series •Reflect Samus SamusHeadWhiteSSBU.png
Shield
3,900 Wily Castle (Ω form) •Reflect-Damage Buffed •The enemy reflects projectiles
Stamina battle
•All fighters' reflected projectiles have increased power
Mega Man 4 Medley
1,093
Sandbag Spirit.png
Sandbag Super Smash Bros. Series Samus SamusHeadWhiteSSBU.png
Grab
2,000 Pokémon Stadium 2 (Ω form) •Item: Home-Run Bat •Timed battle
•The enemy prefers not to move
Online Practice Stage - Super Smash Bros. for 3DS / Wii U
1,150
Stfalcon.png
ST Falcon Battle Clash Samus SamusHeadBlueSSBU.png
Attack
1,900 Port Town Aero Dive •Item: Super Scope •The enemy starts the battle with a Super Scope Marionation Gear
1,162
Flare.png
Flare Custom Robo Series Samus SamusHeadPinkSSBU.png
Neutral
1,800 Pokémon Stadium N/A Stamina battle
•The enemy starts the battle with a Ray Gun
•The enemy starts the battle with a Rocket Belt
Marionation Gear

As a minion

Spirit Battle parameters Inspiration
No. Image Name Series Enemy Fighter(s) Type Power Stage Rules Conditions Music Character
899
Dark Man 4 Spirit.png
Dark Man 4 Mega Man Series Mega Man MegaManHeadBrownSSBU.png
Samus SamusHeadBrownSSBU.png (×3)
Attack
1,400 Wily Castle (Battlefield form) N/A Stamina battle
•The enemy's shield has extra durability
•Reinforcements will appear after an enemy is KO'd
Dark Man Stage Dark Man 1, Dark Man 2, Dark Man 3
1,127
Diskun.png
Diskun Disk System Young Link YoungLinkHeadRedSSBU.png
Pit PitHeadYellowSSBU.png
Simon SimonHeadRedSSBU.png
Samus SamusHeadBlueSSBU.png
Attack
9,100 Temple (Battlefield form) N/A •Take your strongest team into this no-frills battle Famicom Medley Samus Aran (Metroid for the Famicom Disk System)
1,163
Bayonette.png
Bayonette Custom Robo Series Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadYellowSSBU.png
Samus SamusHeadBlueSSBU.png
Attack
1,900 Mushroomy Kingdom (Battlefield form) N/A •The enemy's side special has increased power
Stamina battle
•The enemy favors side specials
Marionation Gear Spear
1,348
Kloster.png
Kloster (Grief) DAEMON X MACHINA •Tiny Snake SnakeHeadBlackSSBU.png
•Giant Samus SamusHeadBlackSSBU.png (×2)
•Giant Dark Samus DarkSamusHeadGreySSBU.png
Neutral
9,500 Frigate Orpheon (hazards off) •Attack Power ↑
•Item: Shooting Types
•The enemy has increased attack power after a little while
•Reinforcements will appear after an enemy is KO'd
Mechanical Rhythm Kloster
1,353
Z Block Spirit.png
S-Tetrimino & Z-Tetrimino Tetris Series Zero Suit Samus ZeroSuitSamusHeadRedSSBU.png
Samus SamusHeadGreenSSBU.png
Grab
4,300 Mushroom Kingdom U (Slide Lift Tower) •Sudden Final Smash
•Item: Screw Attack
•The enemy will suddenly have a Final Smash Chill (for 3DS / Wii U) S-Tetrimino

Alternate costumes

Samus Palette (SSBU).png
SamusHeadSSBU.png SamusHeadBlueSSBU.png SamusHeadPinkSSBU.png SamusHeadBrownSSBU.png SamusHeadPurpleSSBU.png SamusHeadGreenSSBU.png SamusHeadWhiteSSBU.png SamusHeadBlackSSBU.png

Gallery

Character Showcase Video

Trivia

  • Samus' neutral attack's notorious unreliability is alluded to in one of the tips, stating that "Foes can often put up their shields in between the first and second hits of this combo. It's safer to just hit with the first attack and then flee."
  • Samus is the only female character on the game's starting roster (excluding Pikachu's female alternate costumes).
  • Samus is the only one of the original 8 characters from Smash 64 to have an Echo Fighter, that being Dark Samus.
    • Samus is the only character to have an Echo Fighter that represents a separate entity in addition to a non-clone fighter representing an alternate form of herself.
  • In her official artwork, Samus's pose matches the image of her alongside Anthony Higgs from Metroid: Other M. This same image was used on the official Other M website with Higgs removed, and was used as Samus' primary promotional image across various media prior to the release of Metroid: Samus Returns.
  • While Samus' playable design has not been updated to the more recent Metroid: Samus Returns, her Fighter Spirit uses her artwork from said game rather than Other M. This suggests that Samus' retention of her SSB4 design is a consequence of newer Metroid games having been introduced too late in the development cycle for Ultimate to properly integrate their designs into the game; the newest design overhaul in the base roster belongs to Link, with The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild having been released many months before Samus Returns and teased for several years beforehand.
  • Samus' Down Special appearance, Bomb, always utilizes its default colors regardless if she has an alternate costume on. Dark Samus also shares this distinction.
  • When fighting off the fifty puppet fighter army as Master Hand in World of Light, Samus is one of the eight fighters fought there, being affiliated with Galeem.
    • Out of all the eight fighters affiliated with either Galeem or Dharkron, Samus is the only female.
  • Samus, Dark Samus, Mr. Game & Watch, and Pac-Man are the only fighters who do not emit red-flashing eyes in the spirit battle previews in World of Light.