in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
|Final Smash||Sealing the Keyhole|
|“||Sora Is Finally Here!||”|
Sora (ソラ, Sora) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was officially announced during The Final Mr. Sakurai Presents on October 5th, 2021 as the seventh and final downloadable character from Fighters Pass Vol. 2, and was released on October 18th, 2021 (October 19th in time zones east of the Americas) as part of Challenger Pack 11. During the presentation, Masahiro Sakurai confirmed that Sora was the actual winner of the Smash Bros. Fighter Ballot, aligning with the statement that Bayonetta was the winner among "realizable and negotiable characters." Sora is the fourth fighter from a Square Enix published/developed series (after Cloud, Hero, and Sephiroth respectively), as well as the first and only fighter from Disney. Sora is classified as Fighter #82, the last fighter number of the newcomers and the overall roster.
Haley Joel Osment and Miyu Irino, Sora's main English and Japanese voice actors as of the original Kingdom Hearts, reprise their roles in the English and Japanese releases of Ultimate respectively, with their portrayals being re-purposed from Kingdom Hearts Re:coded and Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance.
Sora is ranked 31st out of 82 on the current tier list, placing him in the upper end of the A- tier. Sora possesses a highly dominant aerial game, characterized by an extremely long-distanced double jump that allows him to chase opponents above him, and a number of aerial attacks that sport great power and hitbox coverage. Most distinct among Sora's combat prowess is his possession of an array of natural combos that, when used in conjunction with his unique double jump, allow Sora to perform extensively damaging combo loops via the instant double jump and SHFF techniques. Sora can initiate these combo loops reliably thanks to a host of great combo starters both in the air and on the ground, and many of them also have routes that lead into KOs. A prevalent trait among all of Sora's attacks is their high amount of active frames, granting him considerable leniency in regard to being precise while performing attacks in advantageous situations, and also allows him to tech-chase and cover edge options with relative ease. His special moves grant him a considerable amount of utility; Magic cycles through multiple projectiles that offer him pressure tools in the neutral game, Counterattack allows Sora to interrupt any melee attack, and Aerial Sweep functions as a potent high-rising KO option. He sports an immaculate recovery that complements his flexible off-stage presence, and can mix up his approaches through the use of Sonic Blade. In contrast to the majority of his fellow swordfighters, Sora also possesses a great grab game: each of his grabs are fast, while his down throw and back throw are reliable for starting combos and KOing outright, respectively.
However, Sora is not without flaws. His biggest weakness is his range; while swordsmen are typically characterized by sacrificing frame data in favor of having more range, Sora possesses one of the shortest effective ranges for a swordsman in the roster while still maintaining typical swordsman flaws, which makes spacing much harder for him than other characters of his archetype. This is compounded by his suboptimal air speed, floatiness, and slow double jump, making it challenging for him to weave in and out of enemy threat range while throwing out attacks, as well as escaping disadvantage. Sora is also a lightweight, and thus susceptible to being KO'd at early percentages by stronger characters. His special attacks, despite their well-rounded traits, have a few inconvenient quirks that the player has to circumvent; these include Magic needing to cycle through each of its spells instead being able to be used freely (with Thundaga in particular being a weaker move to use in neutral), Counterattack not being able to be B-reversed or detect attacks behind Sora (outside of an incoming hitbox overshooting and thus activating it) and its reflector being situational, and Sonic Blade losing range when it is shielded.
Although Sora's early representation was sporadic, he saw a rise in results courtesy of significant placements by top players, such as Kameme. Overall, Sora is considered a respectable fighter at a competitive level who must exercise care in his defensive play to reap the rewards of his high overall damage output, extensive combo potential, and potent KO potential.
Sora is a swordsman whose mobility attributes reference his movement in the Kingdom Hearts series. Although he is a lightweight that weighs the same as Zelda, his aerial mobility is notable: he has a below-average fall speed, extremely low gravity (on par with Kirby), and a very poor initial jump, yet has a very high and delayed double jump. Sora's air speed is lackluster due to it being the 24th slowest, but he has the 15th highest air acceleration. Comparatively, Sora's grounded mobility is poor: he has the 10th slowest walking speed, the 24th slowest dashing speed, and the 11th lowest traction.
Thanks to his aerial attributes, Sora can stay in the air for a long time to inflict damage but has trouble closing in or escaping ground pressure through his mobility alone. Conversely, Sora has among the longest recoveries in the game thanks to his aforementioned double jump, Sonic Blade (his side special move) granting up to three additional bursts of movement, and Aerial Sweep (his up special move) granting both extra vertical height and the ability to transition into Sonic Blade. Overall, especially compared to his fellow swordfighters, Sora struggles to apply and escape pressure on the ground given his lackluster mobility and laggy attacks, but fares much better in the air, where the combination of his floatiness and his attacks' lingering hitboxes allows him to perform combos and create havoc while staying airborne.
The centerpiece of Sora's game plan is his aerial game, in large part due to his aforementioned jumping abilities. Neutral and forward aerials are natural combos, similar to Bayonetta's forward aerial. Holding or repeatedly tapping the attack button for each move completes the full combo, whereas tapping the button once initiates only one hit. However, of note is that the first hit of his forward aerial during a fast fall negates his upward momentum, allowing for KO confirms upon landing well past mid percentages. Back aerial is strong enough to KO reliably, and it even has relatively low landing lag (at 11 frames), which makes it relatively safe on shield. Sora's down aerial, Hurricane Blast, works well as an edge-guarding tool due to its long duration, low ending lag, and Sora's aforementioned double jump. However, where Sora's air game shines is his up aerial: its respectable power enables it to carry opponents closer to the upper blast line or even KO them outright, while its lengthy active frames and decent landing lag (at 10 frames) make it a potent combo tool in the air or when SHFF'd.
Sora has several tools that make for a respectable ground game. Neutral attack and forward tilt are similar to his neutral aerial in that they are natural combos that either initiate only one hit on a single button press, or the full combo if the attack button is held or repeatedly tapped. In particular, his neutral attack comes out on frame 5, making it a good tool for close-range pressure, and its high vertical hitbox gives it minor anti air properties. His forward tilt has somewhat slow startup, but compensates with more versatility than his other moves; when tapped once, its first hit has enough power to KO reliably while near the edge despite its fairly unimpressive damage output, and when held or tapped repeatedly, it deals much more damage while sacrificing some of its KO potential.
Up tilt functions much like Palutena's equivalent move, as it is a useful anti-air attack that hits multiple times and has overall decent range. Unlike hers, however, Sora's is also useful for setting up combos at low percentages. Down tilt is one of Sora's go-to combo starters, being able to combo into his aerial moves at low to medium percentages. In particular, its combo into up aerial combo can KO quite early if the opponent does not react correctly. Lastly, dash attack's very large area of effect makes it useful as both a burst option and a 2 frame punish. Although situational, its clean hitbox is nevertheless capable of KOing at very high percentages while near the edge.
Sora's smash attacks are serviceable in their own right. Forward smash is the least reliable of his smash attacks due to its startup and ending lag leaving him vulnerable, but it is also the most powerful and can even negate other projectiles. Up smash has deceptively good range in front of him, and likewise has strong KO power, being one of the strongest up smashes in the game. Lastly, down smash functions like Ridley, King K. Rool and Incineroar's equivalent moves, as it involves him hopping before striking the ground. In doing so, he can vault over low profiling attacks, but unlike other moves, the move is also well suited for 2 frame punishing, since the move's hitbox goes well below him.
While most swordfighters are traditionally burdened with ineffective grab games, Sora's grab game is atypically strong for his archetype. His standing grab is among the fastest in the game with only 7 frames of startup and his throws have good utility. Forward throw is unable to KO at realistic percentages, even near ledges, and thus it is mainly used for launching foes offstage and setting up edge trap situations. Up throw is also decently powerful and can set opponents up for juggles if they do not DI or react correctly but does not KO until over 180% for middleweights. In comparison, Sora's back and down throws are much more useful. Back throw is a useful KO option, thanks to it being able to KO middleweights at around 120% near the edge. Down throw is a useful combo starter due to neutral, forward and up aerials being reliable follow-ups, and it can position opponents for juggles and other aerial situations like up throw.
Sora has a useful kit of special moves. His neutral special, Magic, cycles between three attacking spells (Firaga, Thundaga and then Blizzaga), each cycling after the previous one has been utilized. Firaga functions similarly to Breegull Blaster, being able to launch fireballs by repeatedly pressing the attack button, and can confirm into moves like his dash attack. After finishing, Firaga transitions to Thundaga, which drops several bolts of lightning that combo into each other. Notably, the last bolt has very strong KO power, making it the only spell that can outright KO reliably. Lastly, Thundaga transitions to Blizzaga, which sports decent range, does a lot of shield damage, and freezes opponents starting at mid to high percentages, allowing him to deal additional uncontested damage. While not a reliable KO option, Sora is able to convert the attack into a KO if he reads the opponent's escape with one of his attacks sporting a lingering hitbox. Casting each spell in the air stalls Sora's vertical momentum, allowing him to apply offensive pressure offstage, though Thundaga's lag causes him to fall comparatively faster than the other spells.
Sora's side special, Sonic Blade, functions similarly to Quick Attack: when it is initiated near an opponent, Sora faces them and performs a dashing thrust; otherwise, he continues to move in the direction the Control Stick is held in. If the special attack button is tapped, Sora dashes forward once, but if directions are continuously inputted, Sora strikes up to three times instead. Pressing the special attack button during the input phase will cause Sora to automatically aim at the nearest opponent. While lacking in KO power, the lock-on version of the attack sports decently strong knockback and can set up an advantage situation if connected.
His up special, Aerial Sweep, functions very similarly to Spin Attack, and is a multi-hitting attack with strong KO power and decently fast startup (frame 9), giving Sora a decent out of shield option. A key difference with the aforementioned Spin Attack is that Aerial Sweep propels Sora upward, regardless of whether it is used on the ground or in the air. It can also transition into Sonic Blade if the move input is performed near the jump's apex, which grants Sora a noticeably long-distanced recovery in the process.
Sora's down special, Counterattack, works as both a counterattack and a reflector, similarly to Counter / Reflect Barrier, Gut Check, and Tetrakarn / Makarakarn. Uniquely among said moves is that projectiles get reflected behind Sora rather than in front of him. While this makes the move ineffective as a direct reflector, it grants him some defense against characters with both reflectors and projectiles (such as Mario, Mewtwo, and Hero). Unlike other counterattacks in the game, Sora's counterattack interrupts any direct attack of the opponent by putting them in a rebound state, which gives it the ability to prevent even invincible attacks like Wonderwing, however one downside with the counterattack is that it will only register attacks from the front. Although Sora's counter special has fewer active frames and slightly more startup than other swordfighters like Marth, Sora can interrupt the ending lag at frame 52, much quicker than most other counterattacks, making it less punishable.
One of Sora's most defining traits across his moveset are the presence of lingering hitboxes. Almost all of Sora's grounded moves and aerials, as well as select specials like Blizzaga, feature an extensive number of active frames, granting Sora a fair degree of safety when it comes to throwing out attacks and intercepting opponents. Many of these attacks also cover a plethora of angles, though these are perhaps most notable in his aerials as a result of Sora's aforementioned ability to negate his upward momentum through fast falling. Because of this, Sora has a deadly juggling game and can keep opponents above him trapped in disadvantage for extended periods of time.
When combining the fixed knockback of several of his single hit natural combo strings with the unique traits of his jump, these traits open up potent combo loops through the usage of the instant double jump technique, allowing Sora the ability to cancel his attacks and hit confirm into longer combos, stronger attacks, and even KOs. As a result of these factors, Sora has a number of ways to cover tech chases, air dodges, and multiple committal ground and aerial recovery options when he is pushing advantage, in particular sporting a strong edge trapping game, and in many cases they may be the difference maker between an opponent's survival and them being KO'd.
However, for as many strengths as Sora has, he also has several flaws. His low weight and below-average falling speed make him very susceptible to vertical KOs. Despite his high amount of active attack frames, he has below-average frame data on his moveset, making it hard for him to escape from combos. With all of these factors considered, he is particularly susceptible to wall of pain combos, as he has no realistic ways of defending himself.
Sora's range is arguably his biggest weakness. Despite being a swordsman, the Kingdom Key's range is among the shortest of any weapon in Ultimate. This leaves Sora at a disadvantage against other fighters who sport disjointed ranges, such as Shulk and Sephiroth (especially given their respective sword attacks). When combined with his aforementioned frame data, he is unable to keep maximum distance from other characters as effectively as other spacing-oriented characters (such as Marth and Simon) and can result in opponents being able to chase him down more easily.
Despite his grabs being quick, they also suffer from abysmal range like many other swordfighters, but to an even larger extent; Sora's standing grab, in particular, is tied with Pikachu's for one of the worst grab ranges among the entire cast. This means Sora needs to rely on a lot of defensive play to convert into his advantage state, spacing aerial attacks and using Magic attacks like Firaga as neutral coverage. His lackluster range and mobility also limit his disadvantage somewhat, forcing him to rely on certain momentum-stalling moves like Magic attacks and down aerial to maneuver his way back into neutral.
Lastly, Sora's special moves all have certain unique flaws that force him to maintain a patient playstyle. Magic cannot freely swap between its spells (unlike other multi-weapon attacks, such as Peach's forward smash), forcing him to repeatedly use his spells to cycle through the most optimal one for a given situation. Transitioning also leaves Sora vulnerable since he cannot move on the ground until his current spell concludes, making him whiff punishable unless the player mitigates it through aerial usage. Since all three spells are projectiles they can also be reflected, though this is suboptimal against Thundaga. Sonic Blade slows down slightly upon hitting a shield (although given the short amount of time it takes to transition between hits, punishing the move can prove to be difficult), while Sora cannot input any actions if the move concludes in the air, making him very vulnerable. Aerial Sweep does not hit behind Sora on startup, and Sora is vulnerable to meteor smashes since the move does not hit directly above him. Counterattack's aforementioned ineffectiveness against projectiles makes it infeasible for reflected projectiles to KO opponents. Like Scintilla and Gut Check, it also leaves the area directly behind Sora unprotected.
Overall, Sora's playstyle is reminiscent of Jigglypuff where his light weight and somewhat lackluster direct range force him to play very patiently in order to get the most out of his combos and strong air game. His ability to reliably edge-guard the majority of the cast alongside his wide array of combo routes give him the potential to KO at very early percentages. However, he must be very careful to not overextend or whiff too much as he has the potential to be KO'd at very early percentages.
Sora received no major changes via in-game updates by virtue of being the final DLC fighter and the development team not having enough time to properly observe player behavior and apply any necessary tweaks before sunsetting active development. The only change he received was in update 13.0.1, where his jab reset animation was adjusted to match the rest of the cast.
- Adjusted jab resets animation to match other fighters.
- Sora can crawl.
- Sora has a special double jump that propels him in a floatier, curved trajectory with significantly more height. This trait is shared with Ness, Mewtwo, Lucas, and Kazuya.
- The Kingdom Key's hits generate a cartoony star effect and a unique hit sound, emulating the Kingdom Key's hit effects from the Kingdom Hearts series. The cartoony star effects are carried over for when Sora uses bladed battering items, such as Death's Scythe's neutral and dash attacks, as well as all attacks that use the Beam Sword and Killing Edge.
- Upon Sora landing the final hit in Stamina Mode, a slow-motion zoom effect occurs that fades the screen to white before the Announcer says "Game!" This is a callback to the visual effects seen when landing the finishing blow against a major enemy in the Kingdom Hearts games. If Sora KOs more than one opponent with the final blow, the Announcer will instead say "Game!" first while the slowdown takes place after. If both Sora and his opponent are offscreen when the slowdown is supposed to occur, Finish Zoom will happen instead.
For a gallery of Sora's hitboxes, see here.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
|Neutral attack||2.8%||A lunging downward strike, followed by a forward thrust, followed by a spinning outward strike. Unlike other neutral attacks, holding the attack button will automatically transition into the second and third hits. Its first hit comes out at frame 5, and it has a hitbox that extends so high above Sora that it can even hit opponents on the lower platforms of Battlefield. This perk also makes it useful for catching jumps. Although it deals respectable damage, the third hit is weak, and the move's overall frame data is rather lacking. It resembles the standard attack combo as it appears in the original Kingdom Hearts.|
|Forward tilt||7.2% (single), 5.2% (combo)||An upward strike. Part of a 3-hit combo: if tapped or held, he then performs a forward thrust and a lunging downward strike. A bit slower than his neutral attack, but much stronger. Uniquely for a natural combo, the first hit launches the opponent away if it is canceled, but continuing with the second hit allows the rest of the hits to connect. When canceled, the first hit deals more damage and knockback, to the point that it KOs at high percentages while near the edge. Holding the attack button is recommended if the player wishes to use the 3-hit combo, as tapping it is not as consistent and may stop on the first hit. Its first hit heavily resembles the Slapshot.|
|Up tilt||0.8% (hits 1-5), 1.2% (hit 6), 4.6% (hit 7)||Twirls the Kingdom Key overhead before catching it. Deals multiple hits, similarly to Palutena's up tilt. Although its vertical range is lacking, the first hit has a hitbox in front of Sora that launches an opponent into the subsequent hits, similarly to Sephiroth's up tilt. Its final hit's launching angle and knockback make it reliable for starting combos at low percentages, and decent for setting up aerial pressure beginning at medium percentages. It resembles one of Sora's actions when performing the "Reflect" Reaction Command against Final Xemnas in Kingdom Hearts II, the Tornado as it appears in Kingdom Hearts Re:Chain of Memories, and the Chain Rave.|
|Down tilt||5.2%||A kneeling inward swipe. Alongside down throw, it is one of Sora's most reliable combo starters. At low percentages, it can combo into neutral attack, forward tilt, up tilt, forward smash and up smash, depending on DI. At medium to high percentages, it can combo into neutral, forward and up aerials. Its up smash combo is able to connect until KO percentages, though this can be avoided with inward DI.|
|Dash attack||9.6% (clean), 7.6% (mid), 7.2% (late)||A modified baseball slide. It propels Sora a fairly long distance, which makes it effective both as a burst option and as a 2 frame punish. Although situational, its clean hit can KO at very high percentages while near the edge. It heavily resembles the Sliding Dash as it appears in Kingdom Hearts Final Mix.|
|Forward smash||15.4% (clean), 13.8% (late)||A lunging, outward strike. Compared to the rest of Sora's moveset, it is very strong, thus making it a go-to finisher. Like Toon Link's forward smash, its range can be rather misleading; in Sora's case, it is because the clean hit lasts for only 2 frames, and its hitboxes have very mediocre horizontal range. KOs Mario at 74% at the edge. It resembles the Rising Strike.|
|Up smash||0.6% (hit 1), 14.6% (hit 2)||An upward thrust that emits a burst of magical light at the tip of the Kingdom Key. Like up tilt, it has a hitbox in front of Sora that launches opponents into the main hit. However, this hitbox cannot hit prone opponents. The second hit is quite large and has a sweetspot at the tip of the Kingdom Key that deals more knockback. As a trade-off, the second hit does not have much horizontal range. In addition to having decent startup (hitting at frame 11), it is among the stronger up smashes in the game, KOing Mario at 100% from ground level, though it does possess considerable ending lag. It resembles the Magic Flash.|
|Down smash||15.2% (near), 14.2% (far)||Hops and then thrusts the Kingdom Key into the ground, emitting a shockwave. The sweetspot is near the Kingdom Key, whereas the sourspot is the remainder of the shockwave. Like King K. Rool, Ridley and Incineroar's down smashes, Sora's hurtbox shifts upward during his hop, allowing him to evade attacks with low hitboxes. It also renders Sora intangible upon startup, making it even easier to evade opposing attacks. However, the hop makes the attack slow to start, thus making it more effective for edge getups or reads. The sweetspot is powerful enough to KO Mario at 82% while near the edge and inflicts considerable shield damage. To match its animation, the Kingdom Key's hitbox actually enters the ground upon hitting it, which allows it to hit through shallow surfaces. On the other hand, the sourspot is less effective for KOing. It heavily resembles the Finishing Leap.|
|Neutral aerial||3.8%||A somersaulting strike. Part of a 3-hit combo: if tapped or held, he then performs an upward strike and a downward strike. Each hit causes him to float slightly, similarly to Bayonetta's forward aerial. The first hitbox has a wide, lasting hitbox, allowing it to be used out of a short hop to initiate aerial combos. While the first hit reaches all the way behind Sora, the back hit (after the Kingdom Key is directly under Sora) does not chain properly into the second and third hits, as it has an altered angle that knocks opponents away. Falling during either the first or second hit allows Sora to extend his combo using other moves, including forward smash for a KO combo at around 100%. Hitting all three hits usually requires Sora to stay in place, as the opponent may fall out if he drifts forward. Repeatedly using the first two hits can let Sora constantly juggle an opponent offstage, and thus exhaust their recovery options. Its first hit resembles the Air Spiral.|
|Forward aerial||4.8%||A downward strike. Part of a 3-hit combo: if tapped or held, he then performs an upward strike and a somersaulting strike. Each hit causes him to float slightly, similarly to Bayonetta's forward aerial. Falling during the first two hits allow Sora to extend his combo using other moves. Hitting all 3 hits usually requires Sora to drift forward; this property easily allows it to drag opponents near the side blast lines. The third hit deals decent diagonal knockback, making it extremely effective as an offstage finisher. The first hit can be canceled by fast falling, which can combo into forward smash for a KO combo at around 100%.|
|Back aerial||13.2%||Turns around to perform an outward strike. Its respectable damage output and decent knockback make it a useful KO option, as it KOs Mario at 104% at the edge. Its relatively low landing lag also allows it to be used for a wall of pain in some situations.|
|Up aerial||12.2%||Backflips to perform an overhead arcing strike. It has surprisingly high knockback, making it a strong KO option especially due to Sora's high aerial mobility, and allows it to KO out of a down throw or down tilt. Its hitbox remains active until the very end of the strike, similarly to Roy's up aerial. When coupled with its relatively low landing lag, its final frames can reliably and quite easily initiate combos while Sora is falling, such as into Aerial Sweep.|
|Down aerial||Hurricane Blast (ハリケーンピリオド, Hurricane Period)||9.8% (hit), 5.5% (landing)||Backflips rapidly and repeatedly while holding the Kingdom Key horizontally in front of himself in order to perform a buzzsaw-like series of strikes. Upon landing, Sora poses with the Kingdom Key against his shoulder. It is a stall-then-fall and has a long-lasting hitbox. Sora can recover if he uses the move offstage, so long as he does not initiate it at the edge. As a result, the move is an effective yet risky edge-guarding option, since Sora can go extremely deep offstage with it and then use his double jump, Aerial Sweep, and/or Sonic Blade in order to recover. KOs Mario at 154% while at ground level.|
|Grab||—||Reaches out with one hand. Sora's grab range is poor, even compared to other swordfighters. However, it has quick startup.|
|Pummel||1.3%||Hits the opponent with the Kingdom Key's hilt.|
|Forward throw||5% (hit), 3% (throw)||Swings the Kingdom Key downward teeth-first. Due to its mediocre power making it unsuitable for KOing, it is best suited for creating space and setting up edge-guards.|
|Back throw||11.8% (throw), 7.6% (collateral)||A giant swing. It can deal collateral damage to bystanders and is an effective KO option at reasonable percentages. It KOs Mario at 120% near the edge. It heavily resembles the Blow-off, and vaguely resembles the second portion of the "Merge" Reaction Command from Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix.|
|Up throw||6.8%||Heaves the opponent upward with his free hand. KOs Mario at 182% and somewhat earlier on platforms, which makes it better suited for initiating juggles. It can also start reaction-based combos at low percentages, though these are not guaranteed. It resembles the first portion of the "Merge" Reaction Command from Kingdom Hearts II Final Mix.|
|Down throw||4.6%||A one-handed body slam. Alongside down tilt, it is one of Sora's most reliable combo starters. It can combo into aerials at various percentages, and even dashing up smash at low percentages. It vaguely resembles the "Fail-Safe" Reaction Command in Kingdom Hearts II.|
|Floor attack (front)||7%||Spins around and swings the Kingdom Key behind himself, then in front of himself while getting up.|
|Floor attack (back)||7%||Spins around and swings the Kingdom Key behind himself, then in front of himself while getting up.|
|Floor attack (trip)||5%||Spins around and swings the Kingdom Key behind himself, then in front of himself while getting up.|
|Edge attack||9%||Crawls forward from the edge and thrusts the Kingdom Key at a low angle.|
|Neutral special||Magic||Firaga: 5.6% (clean), 5.2% (mid), 4.8% (late)
Thundaga: 5.2% (each hit)
Blizzaga: 2.4%/3.6% (particle), 1.8% (melee)
|Casts 1 of 3 different magic spells (Firaga, Thundaga and Blizzaga), with each use cycling through the spells in the list according to the command icon above his damage meter. The spell list does not reset upon Sora being KO'd, and each first midair use of each spell causes Sora to stall his descent, allowing for a maximum of 3 stalls before landing. Firaga is a fireball that travels horizontally and, when tapped, can be launched continuously. Firaga acts as a conventional projectile and is capable of locking, though it does not have high knockback and does not travel very far. Firaga also has high hitstun and relatively low ending lag, allowing it to be used as part of combos. Thundaga generates 3 thunderbolts that descend in front of Sora in a subsequent order, which can result in them comboing into each other. The thunderbolts cover less distance in the air, but are very effective for edge-guarding or coverage in front of Sora due to their vertical range and proximity to one another. The final bolt KOs Mario at the edge at 155%, though it can potentially KO significantly earlier offstage if the opponent is hit by the upper half of the first two bolts. Blizzaga fires a short-ranged, conical stream of ice crystals; like Blizzard, it has a very high chance of freezing opponents and granting an opening, even if only 1 segment of Blizzaga connects. Blizzaga can also combo into Aerial Sweep and KO at around 120%. All 3 moves are counted as energy projectiles, and can thus be absorbed, reflected and Pocketed. However, the Pocketed versions are unwieldy to use, since they are either weak or possess vertical hitboxes.|
|Side special||Sonic Blade||5.2% (hit 1, lock-on hits 2-3), 3% (free aim hits 2-3)||A high-speed thrust. Like Quick Attack, Sonic Blade allows Sora to change his travel trajectory more than once in order to increase his travel distance by moving to the chosen direction, with a maximum of three thrusts. The first thrust will always travel horizontally. Holding different buttons lets Sora control his travel: If the directional keys are held, Sora aims towards that direction. If the special button is held, the move automatically locks onto the nearest enemy with a target and automatically tracks them, while slightly increasing the knockback of the final hit. Letting go of the directional keys and special buttons cancels the move early. Each thrust travels less distance and increases the ending lag, though its combined distance grants Sora a good recovery. However, it is rather slow, making it interruptible by opponents. Sora is rendered helpless at the end of the move.|
|Up special||Aerial Sweep||3.8% (hit 1), 2.1% (hits 2-6), 4.6% (hit 7)||Leaps in a spinning motion to perform a series of alternating inward and outward strikes. Although it is very similar to Spin Attack, Aerial Sweep deviates from it by propelling Sora into the air, even if it is initiated on the ground. Its last hit has impressively high knockback, which makes it a potent KO option. It can also function as a combo finisher, which can KO early in the air, especially due to Sora's effective aerial prowess. KOs Mario at 112% when initiated from the ground. However, its hitboxes are slightly inconsistent to the point that they are not guaranteed to link together, and opponents can fall out of it. Aerial Sweep also grants Sora a strong recovery, thanks to its ability to be canceled into Sonic Blade to maximize his recovery distance if it is used right before it renders Sora helpless.|
|Down special||Counterattack||9% (minimum), 1.5× (counter) 1.4× (reflection)||Parries and then counterattacks any incoming attacks with an upward strike. Against non-projectile attacks, Sora briefly rears back while the victim is momentarily thrown off balance in the form of their grab release animation (similarly to Blade Counter) before he retaliates with the upward swing. Against projectiles, Sora immediately retaliates and reflects the projectile with a 1.4× damage multiplier. However, it is unique as it deflects projectiles behind him, meaning it is mainly used to negate projectiles in 1-on-1 situations unless the opponent is close enough to get hit by the Kingdom Key's strike. Like Gut Check and Scintilla, the counter detection for Counterattack is placed in front of Sora, which can leave him vulnerable to attacks from behind. However, unlike those moves, Counterattack does not check for the direction of the attack. As a result, hitboxes that reach the detection box from behind can still trigger Counterattack and cause Sora to automatically turn around. The counterattack staggering enemies is a reference to gaining a Tech Point when Guarding in the original Kingdom Hearts.|
|Final Smash||Sealing the Keyhole||16% (initial, direct), 7% (initial, late), 24% (cutscene), 10% (ending)||Fires a beam of magical light from the tip of the Kingdom Key that summons a huge Keyhole. Anyone trapped inside is locked behind by a Super Smash Bros. variant of the Door to Darkness, and Sora seals the Keyhole with the same beam, causing the Door to explode. Any opponents whose damage has accumulated to 100% by the time the explosion occurs is automatically KO'd.|
- Glides in from the background, lands, and hops happily while hoisting the Kingdom Key in the air before assuming his battle stance.
- Up taunt: Casts Stopga, Aeroga, or Curaga, which cycle similarly to Magic. However, these spells are merely aesthetic and do not have any effect on gameplay. Sora calls out "Time!" (時よ！, O' Time!), "Wind!" (風よ！, O' Wind!), and "Heal!" (癒しよ！, O' Healing!) for each respective spell.
- Side taunt: Faces the screen and twirls his Kingdom Key in front of himself while grunting. This resembles one of his victory animations in the Olympus Coliseum.
- Down taunt: Hops while raising his fist in the air and saying "Here we go!" (行くよ！, Let's go!). This resembles his animation after successfully hitting star-marked notes in Kingdom Hearts Melody of Memory.
- Twirls the Kingdom Key around, adjusting his hands as necessary to hold it again.
- Looks around, referencing how he looks around when engaged in combat in the Kingdom Hearts series.
|Cheer (English)||Cheer (Japanese/Chinese)||Cheer (Italian)||Cheer (Dutch)||Cheer (French)|
|Description||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!|
|Cheer (German)||Cheer (Spanish)||Cheer (Russian)||Cheer (Korean)|
|Description||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!||Soooo - ra!|
- Left: Hops while raising his fist in the air, similarly to his down taunt. Upon landing, he spins the Kingdom Key around, and then rests it on his shoulder while saying "Yes." (良し, Alright.) This is similar to one of his victory animations when he wins a round in one of the cups from the Olympus Coliseum area in the original Kingdom Hearts, which in turn resembles Cloud Strife's victory animation in Final Fantasy VII. The pose at the end is similar to the one he assumes in Tetsuya Nomura's artwork from Kingdom Hearts and, by extension, his P1/P5 fighter renders. Uniquely, if Sora uses his Timeless River costume, he'll briefly close his eyes after resting his Kingdom Key on his shoulder.
- Up: Swings the Kingdom Key forward once, then twirls it while turning around before resting it on his shoulder while showing his back toward the screen. This is also another one of his victory animations in the Coliseum, which in turn references Squall Leonhart's victory pose in Final Fantasy VIII.
- Right: Thrusts the Kingdom Key forward and turns it (as if locking/unlocking something), then quickly spins it around and points it upward while holding it with both hands. This slightly resembles the summoning animations in Kingdom Hearts.
In competitive play
Tier placement and history
Initial perceptions towards Sora were rather positive, with many top players pointing out his potent combo potential from his neutral and forward aerials, as well as his versatile recovery. Initial results matched these perceptions thanks to the efforts of Zackray, who notably won Kagaribi 5 two weeks after the character was released. As a result, many players were confident that Sora had the potential to be a high-tier fighter.
However, no other Sora player has yet to match Zackray's achievement. In fact, most of Zackray's other results with Sora were more mixed, while a couple of other players who tried to main Sora, including Aaron, saw limited success; both players have since dropped Sora. In North America, despite confidence from players such as Maister and Dabuz, Sora garnered a reputation for being pulled out and used unsuccessfully in last-ditch efforts at majors, and both players have since saw little success when using the character.
On the other hand, despite Zackray dropping the character, Sora saw continued success in Japan thanks to the efforts of kameme, who by mid-2022 had achieved multiple top 8 placements with the character, and komorikiri, who has achieved respectable placements regionally despite being semi-active. kameme especially was able to travel to North America for several tournaments and placed top 8 at almost all of them. kameme's success with the character helped improve Sora's reputation in North America: currently, the general perception of Sora is that he is a viable, yet unpopular character in the metagame with ESAM and kameme both ranking him in top tier, though time will tell how he fares in the long run. Regardless, he is ranked 31st on the first and current tier list.
Most historically significant players
See also: Category:Sora players (SSBU)
- kameme - The best Sora player in the world. Placed 2nd at Glitch - Regen, 4th at Umebura SP 9, 5th at both Kagaribi 6 and Maesuma TOP 8, and 7th at The Big House 10 with wins over players such as MkLeo, acola, and ProtoBanham.
- komorikiri - The second-best Sora player in Japan. Placed 3rd at Sumabato SP 22, 4th at Sumabato SP 27, 5th at Sumabato SP 35, 7th at Sumabato SP 32, and 17th at Maesuma TOP 8 with wins over players such as Umeki, Kome, and Shirayuki.
- Zackray - The first and only player to win a supermajor with Sora, winning Kagaribi 5.
Classic Mode: The Light That Clears the Darkness
In reference to the Kingdom Hearts series, Sora's opponents are analogous to various antagonists featured in his home series. This theme is further reinforced by Rounds 1 through 6 being Stamina Mode battles (in reference to the Kingdom Hearts series' hit points system) and each Round playing a song from the Kingdom Hearts series (regardless of what universe the stage originates from).
|1||Link and Young Link||Hollow Bastion||Fragments of Sorrow||Stamina battle. Sora has 100 HP, whereas Dark Link and Dark Young Link have 50 HP apiece.|
Dark Link and Dark Young Link represent the two battles against Riku at Hollow Bastion in the original Kingdom Hearts, the second of which saw Riku possessed by the game's antagonist, Ansem, Seeker of Darkness.
|2||Mr. Game & Watch (normal-sized ×5, large ×2, giant ×1)||Skyworld (Battlefield form)||Night of Fate||Horde battle.|
Sora has 100 HP, whereas the normal-sized Mr. Game & Watches have 20 HP, the large ones have 50 HP, and the giant one has 70 HP.
The Mr. Game & Watches represent Shadow, Neoshadow, and Invisible Heartless.
|3||Cloud||Coliseum||Shrouding Dark Cloud||Stamina battle. Sora and Cloud have 100 HP apiece.|
This Round references Sora's battle against Cloud at the Olympus Coliseum in the original Kingdom Hearts. Cloud uses his "Cloudy Wolf" alternate costume from Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children, which he also wears for his appearance in Kingdom Hearts II.
|4||Robin (normal-sized ×1, large ×1) and Robin||Kalos Pokémon League||Hollow Bastion||Stamina battle. Sora has 100 HP, whereas the Robins have 50 HP apiece.|
This Round references the events of Kingdom Hearts Chain of Memories. The Robins represent Organization XIII, with the female representing Larxene, the normal-sized male representing Vexen, and the large male representing Marluxia. The stage references Castle Oblivion, which is the game's primary setting.
|5||Giant Ganondorf||Find Mii (Ω form)||Destiny's Force||Stamina battle. Sora and Ganondorf have 100 HP apiece.|
Giant Ganondorf represents the Darkside Heartless fought at the destruction of Destiny Islands, which is further referenced by Destiny's Force being played like in the original Kingdom Hearts. Ganondorf's alternate costume also vaguely resembles Xehanort, the white-haired overarching antagonist of the Kingdom Hearts series. The stage could also reference the Keyblade Graveyard, where Xehanort is fought in Kingdom Hearts Birth by Sleep and Kingdom Hearts III.
|6||Metal Sora||Hollow Bastion (Dive to the Heart, Sora's Station)||Destati||Stamina battle. Sora and the CPU Sora have 100 HP apiece.|
This Round references Riku's battle against the Armored Ventus Nightmare in Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance. Metal Sora references Ventus' Keyblade Armor protecting him before being turned into a Nightmare. Metal Sora will also use Sora's default appearance, albeit while clad in metal, even if the player is also using Sora's default appearance.
|Final||Master Hand and Crazy Hand||Final Destination||Destati||Both Hands are fought, regardless of the difficulty selected.|
Credits roll after completing Classic Mode. Completing it as Sora has Blast Away! -Gummi Ship II- accompany the credits, in reference to the Gummi Ship sections in the Kingdom Hearts series.
Role in World of Light
Due to his status as downloadable content, Sora does not have a legitimate role in World of Light. Instead, he is unlocked for use in the mode after freeing ten fighters from Galeem's control. If loading an existing save file that meets this condition before downloading Sora, he is immediately unlocked.
Sora's default fighter spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 300 Gold, but only after Sora has been downloaded. Unlocking Sora 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. His Kingdom Hearts II, Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, Kingdom Hearts III, and Timeless River outfits have fighter spirits of their own, available through the shop. Each fighter spirit has an alternate version that replaces them with their artwork in Ultimate.
In Spirit Battles
As the main opponent
|1,507||Roxas||KINGDOM HEARTS Series||•Sora (160 HP)||13,800||Hollow Bastion (Dive to the Heart, Roxas)||•Health Recovery
•Move Speed ↑
•Attack Power ↑
•The enemy has increased attack power after a little while
•The enemy has increased move speed after a little while
•The enemy starts the battle with a Killing Edge
|Fragments of Sorrow|
|1,511||Ventus||KINGDOM HEARTS Series||•Sora (100 HP)
•Dark Samus (80 HP)
|3,900||Gerudo Valley (Battlefield form)||N/A||•Defeat the main fighter to win
•Reinforcements will appear during the battle
|Shrouding Dark Cloud|
As a minion
|1,506||Kairi||KINGDOM HEARTS Series||•Daisy
|2,100||Tortimer Island||N/A||•Defeat the main fighter to win
•The enemy starts the battle with a Lip's Stick
|Hand in Hand||Sora|
Conditions in italic are not listed on the Spirit Battle preview screen.
Sora's unlock notice after downloading him from the Nintendo eShop.
Sora shaking hands with Mario in front of the fiery Super Smash Bros. logo.
Sora assuming a readied stance on Hollow Bastion.
Sora using Aerial Sweep on Tortimer Island.
Sora using Sonic Blade toward Metal Face on Gaur Plain.
Sora using the third hit of his neutral aerial on Bowser.
Sora with Kirby, Mr. Game & Watch, and Link on PictoChat 2.
Sora interacting with Duck Hunt on Battlefield.
Sora waking up next to Jigglypuff on Cloud Sea of Alrest.
Sora, Captain Falcon, and Zero Suit Samus facing off against the Dark Emperor at Find Mii.
Sora alongside all of the other DLC fighters of Fighters Pass Vol. 2.
- Sora's fighter tagline, "Sora Is Finally Here!", is a reference to both his massive and long-term popularity as a fighter candidate, and his status as the final fighter of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's roster.
- Sora is referred to within the game files with the codename "trail".
- Sora's moveset was designed primarily to emphasize the aerial combat and tightly timed combos within the Kingdom Hearts series.
- Several of Sora's promotional images contain references to the Kingdom Hearts series:
- Sora appearing on Tortimer Island is a reference to his birthplace, the Destiny Islands.
- Sora attacking Metal Face references the Guard Armor, a recurring Heartless boss.
- Sora fighting Sephiroth on Coliseum references their encounter at the Olympus Coliseum. However, Sora is wearing his Kingdom Hearts II outfit in the picture despite only fighting Sephiroth at the Olympus Coliseum in the original Kingdom Hearts.
- Sora standing next to Duck Hunt references his allies Goofy and Donald Duck, who are also a dog and duck duo.
- Sora waking up next to Jigglypuff is a reference to Meow Wow, a balloon-like monster known as a Dream Eater that features the characteristics of both a cat and a dog. Meow Wow was Sora's first companion in Kingdom Hearts 3D: Dream Drop Distance, and even returned as a Summon in Kingdom Hearts III, being the first one that he obtains.
- Sora's various animations hold references to the Kingdom Hearts series as well:
- He hovers above the ground while dashing, which is similar to his Glide ability.
- While holding crates, he holds them above his head, as he does when carrying crates and barrels in the original Kingdom Hearts.
- His swimming and ladder climbing animations are effectively carried over from the original Kingdom Hearts.
- When holding one-handed items, his stance changes so that he holds the Kingdom Key with his raised right arm and the item in his left, while tapping his left foot, resembling his Valor Form's battle stance. Both his tiptoeing and walking animations are altered to match.
- If the item is a battering item, Sora's animations for his neutral attack, forward tilt, dash attack, and forward smash will also change to resemble Valor Form's various dual-wielding attacks.
- When teching on a wall, Sora performs a similar animation to when performing a wall bounce while utilizing Flowmotion in Dream Drop Distance.
- Sora's jumping animation replicates his jumping animation from the original Kingdom Hearts, and his backwards double jump animation replicates his High Jump animation from Kingdom Hearts II.
- Mario tossing the Kingdom Key to summon Sora and both of them shaking hands at the end of his reveal trailer are references to them being the first and last numbered fighters on Ultimate's roster, respectively.
- The connection between both characters is also much more intricate beyond this. According to Tetsuya Nomura, the director of the Kingdom Hearts series, the 3D graphics and sandbox-style gameplay of Super Mario 64 inspired him to create a game similar to it. Upon being told that the only characters that could rival Mario in regard to popularity would have to be from a company like Disney, Nomura took this to heart and sought to implement Disney characters into his game after Disney approved Squaresoft's usage of their characters for such a project. Ultimately, this turn of events led to the groundwork of the Kingdom Hearts series' gameplay and story.
- Sora's reveal trailer has different lip syncing between the English and Japanese versions. When he flies by the camera to chuckle in the Japanese version, his mouth is already open. In the English version, he grins before chuckling. This goes along with the lip-syncing changes in most English versions of Kingdom Hearts.
- Each of Sora's official renders resemble his official artworks from each respective iteration of Kingdom Hearts. Said renders are also used for his fighter spirits.
- Unlike in the Kingdom Hearts series, Sora's P1 and P5 renders have him hold the Kingdom Key so that the teeth face upward, in contrast to how the teeth face downward in his other renders and his P1 fighter spirit. This is to reflect his 2D artwork from the original Kingdom Hearts, in which he holds the Kingdom Key similarly.
- If one counts Bowser Jr. and the Koopalings as separate fighters, Sora has the most Fighter Spirits in the game, with five.
- Despite having his proportions from the original Kingdom Hearts, Sora's stance and crouch height resemble his battle pose from Kingdom Hearts II and Kingdom Hearts III.
- Sora is the third DLC character in Ultimate whose voice clips are repurposed from another game, following Banjo & Kazooie and Min Min.
- Sora and Mythra are the only DLC characters in Ultimate who lack a meteor smash. If counting Pyra's moveset, Sora is the only DLC character, as well as Ultimate newcomer in general, to completely lack a meteor smash in any capacity.
- When KO'd by reaching 0 HP during his final stock in Stamina Mode, Sora uses one of his heavy knockback voice clips instead of his standard KO voice clip. This trait is shared with Mario, Dr. Mario and all vocal DLC fighters except for Joker, Banjo & Kazooie, and the Japanese voice for Byleth.
- When fighting both Master Hand and Crazy Hand in Classic Mode, Sora will start on the far-left side of the stage instead of in the center. This also occurs with Sephiroth, Pyra and Mythra in their respective Classic Mode routes.
- When facing to the left, Sora's up and side taunts feature him smoothly turning towards the screen for the animation; when facing to the right, he instead snaps into position.
- ^ a b c d Super Smash Bros.™ Ultimate – Battling with Sora – Nintendo Switch
- ^ Kody NOKOLO on Twitter: "Sora’s playstyle in his games emphasizes aerial combat and tight timing for combos. It doesn’t exactly translate 1 to 1, but you might be able to get some of that feeling in Smash."
- ^ Iwata Asks | 1. The Impact of Super Mario 64
|Kingdom Hearts universe|
|Related universe||Final Fantasy|