Special Flag (スペシャルフラッグ, Special Flag), also called S-Flag, is an item from numerous games developed by Namco. It appears in Super Smash Bros. 4 as an item. When used, the character will hold it in the air and become immobile for 3 seconds; the successful completion of its use will add a point to the user's score in a timed match, or give the user an additional stock in a stock match. If a character takes any hit while holding the Special Flag, they will automatically drop it (this resets the time needed to use the flag as well).
While holding the flag, all grounded up, down, and neutral standard attacks will activate the flag. A dash attack will not activate the flag. The flag can be tossed away without using it with the grab button.
Given the nature of the Special Flag's bonus, it can only appear in variations of Time and Stock matches, and will not appear at all in Coin or Stamina battles, even if it is enabled in the Item Switch. It also does not appear in Smash Tour battles.
Additionally, if a fighter has the maximum amount of stocks (99) and uses a Special Flag, nothing will happen. This will not stop a computer player from attempting to use it.
Special Flags have appeared in multiple games developed by Namco. The item debuted in the maze game Rally-X, acting as an item that had to be collected by the player alongside other flags scattered throughout levels; the Special Flag, however, gives double the score of a normal flag and would double the values of every flag collected for the rest of the level unless the player loses a life.
The item has appeared in more recent games by Namco, often acting as an easter egg to players; among these appearances include Star Fox: Assault and Tales of Vesperia. Similar to the various series symbols that have appeared in the Smash Bros. series, the Special Flag has also been a flagship symbol for the company, even being used as the favicon for its official website.
CPU players have notable behaviors for a Special Flag: if any other fighter attempts to use it, all CPU players will focus their attention on that fighter in attempt to knock the flag out of their hand. Low level CPUs generally dawdle for a few seconds before reacting, usually giving human players a free point/stock. If a CPU player grabs hold of it, however, it may proceed to use the flag if no other fighters are close by, but are extremely likely to throw the flag offstage as soon as possible even if the coast is clear. This makes the Special Flag one of the few items CPU players are willing to discard from play.
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