Snake (スネーク, Snake) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was officially confirmed on June 12th, 2018, with his appearance exclaiming "Everyone is Here!" with the rest of the returning roster. Snake is classified as fighter #31.
David Hayter's portrayal of Snake from Brawl was repurposed for the English version of Ultimate, with Hayter initially confirming on Twitter that he would be reprising his role as Snake. Akio Ōtsuka reprises his role in the Japanese version, with his voice clips being recycled from Brawl as well.
How to unlock
Complete one of the following:
With the exception of the third method, Snake must then be defeated on Shadow Moses Island.
Changes from Super Smash Bros Brawl
In Brawl, Snake was considered among the best characters in the game, and for a while, he was considered the second best, only behind Meta Knight. This was due to his extreme power and damage output, huge disjointed hitboxes, excellent endurance due to a combination of very high weight and great momentum canceling, an excellent projectile game with his explosives, and a chain grab with his down throw which could tech-chase. Due his top-tier status in Brawl (placed 6th out of 38 characters), Snake received a mix of buffs and nerfs in the transition to Ultimate, but he was nerfed overall.
The most notable buffs he received were to his previously slow mobility, no longer being among the slowest in the series, although it's still slow. The universal 3-frame jumpsquat and Snake's improved air speed give Snake better options when transitioning from the ground to the air, while the reduced landing lag on all of his aerials gives him landing options. In addition, many of his moves have been given reduced startup (e.g. neutral and down aerial's multi hits) or end lag (e.g. down tilt), or even both (e.g. down smash). His Remote Missile is significantly faster and more controllable making it a stronger tool against opponents who are off stage and his C4 is overall faster. Finally, the removal of chain grabbing significantly benefits his endurance.
However, Snake also received many glaring nerfs as well. Due to Snake's very high weight being reduced to be more in-line with similarly sized characters, the removal of momentum canceling and given that Cypher can now be destroyed, his overall endurance especially while offstage is much weaker. In addition, while his ground game still remains strong, it has been nerfed in several ways; his neutral attack has less range and is significantly weaker, his forward tilt has less range, deals far less damage, the first hit has been altered removing its ability to trip and the second hit is slower and weaker. His up tilt's infamously deceptive horizontal range has been reduced, and the explosions from his explosion-based attacks can now be absorbed, worsening his matchups against Ness, Lucas and Mr. Game & Watch. While he has seen some improvements to his aerials, they are all weaker (especially down aerial) and many of his attacks have much smaller hitboxes or the hitboxes were removed altogether, worsening his range, although he still possesses large disjoints in his attacks. As a result, his extreme power and KO ability from Brawl, while still above average, was weakened significantly, removing jab 3 and down tilt's KO potential and making weaker almost all his attacks. The removal of DACUS and the Gatling combo severely limit his approach options despite the aforementioned increase to his mobility. Lastly while the removal of chain grabbing improves his endurance, it also means that he cannot chain grab with his down throw severely reducing its damage racking and tech chase potential.
The nerfs outweigh the buffs, making Snake theorically worse compared to Brawl but still retains multiple key traits from his Brawl incarnation, and remains a very viable choice in tournaments with players such as MVD and Salem achieving very strong results with him. His reception has mostly been extremely positive, and is considered as a top-tier contender similar to his placement in Brawl.
Throws and other attacks
Snake has received a mix of buffs and nerfs through game updates.
For a gallery of Snake's hitboxes, see here.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
In competitive play
Snake has been a very popular character in Ultimate's first year. The character has many obvious strengths, including a frame 1 option to break combos, great edgeguarding tools, heavy weight, guaranteed kill setups at higher percents, and so on. At some points, he was widely considered to be in contention for being a top 3 character in the game. Following Ally's retirement, however, Snake's results have notably dropped. MVD has gotten multiple 49th place or lower placings at majors, Salem has also had inconsistent placings (though he has many other characters he uses), and Shogun has relatively few tournament placings outside of Japan. It's clear that Snake is a top tier character, but with the premier Snake main now gone, the character's results (and possibly potential) have somewhat stagnated.
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.
Classic Mode: Weapons and Equipment OSP
Snake's opponents all use projectile weapons. Additionally, all the items that spawn are either projectile weapons or explosives, to go with the theme of the route. OSP stands for On-Site Procurement, which is the condition for many of Snake's missions in the series. The boss of his route, Galleom also fits with the theme due to it using projectile weapons and explosives during his fight, or it may also be a reference to how Galleom resembles a Metal Gear.
Note: All stages except for the final round will play a song from the Metal Gear series, no matter what universe the stage originated from.
Role in World of Light
Snake was among the fighters that were summoned to the cliffside to fight against the army of Master Hands.
During the opening cutscene Snake was present on the cliffside when Galeem absorbed the Master Hands and unleashed his beams of light. While the other fighters were attempting to deflect or dodge the beams, Snake hid in his cardboard box; this obviously proved useless, as a beam of light vaporized him and his box, placing him under Galeem's imprisonment along with the rest of the fighters, except for Kirby.
Snake's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Snake in World of Light allows the player to preview the spirit below in the Spirit List under the name "???". As a Fighter Spirit, it cannot be used in Spirit Battles and is purely aesthetic. Each Fighter Spirit has an alternate version that replaces them with their artwork in Ultimate.
In Spirit battles
As the main opponent
As a minion
Character Showcase Video