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SSBU spirit Tabuu.png

A boss in Brawl
Universe Super Smash Bros.
Location The Great Maze

Tabuu (タブー, Tabuu) is the main antagonist, the leader of the Subspace Army and the final boss of Super Smash Bros. Brawl's Adventure Mode: The Subspace Emissary. He is the powerful god-like embodiment of the dimension of Subspace. He uses the Subspace Bombs to send entire locations to his dimension, where he absorbs their power to increase his own, pursuing his plan to conquer and subjugate the universe. His name is a corruption of the word taboo, referring to something forbidden.

Aside from his appearance in Brawl, Tabuu appears in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as a spirit.

Role in The Subspace Emissary[edit]

Close-up of Tabuu in The Subspace Emissary.

Tabuu is the embodiment of Subspace who plotted to transport areas of the World of Trophies into Subspace for his world. However, he himself cannot leave Subspace, which is why he created the Subspace Army to act in his stead. Tabuu took over the Isle of the Ancients, the home of the R.O.B.s and forced them to serve him under the threat of annihilation. Tabuu first discovered that Mr. Game & Watch had Shadow Bugs in him and captured him to harness the power and thus the Subspace Army was born. Tabuu studied and took control of the master of the world, Master Hand, and used his powers to control him like a puppet. Tabuu used Master Hand to enlist the help of Bowser, Ganondorf and Wario. These three were sent to hunt down any fighters that would stand in the way of Tabuu's plans, while remaining unaware of Tabuu's existence. However, King Dedede learned the truth about Tabuu and began interfering with his plans.[1]

Later in the story, after the heroes destroy the Subspace Gunship and enter Subspace, Ganondorf betrays Bowser by blasting him with a Dark Cannon. Ganondorf then goes to greet Master Hand, but soon discovers Tabuu's control over him and realizes he was tricked. Enraged, he charges a futile attack at Tabuu, who effortlessly knocks him away and causes him to land on Master Hand, freeing him from Tabuu's control (and turning Ganondorf into a trophy in the process). Now freed, Master Hand also attempts to fight back, but to no avail. After Master Hand is defeated, Tabuu uses his Off Waves to turn everyone into trophies as soon as they approach. With the only threats to his plans seemingly neutralized, a satisfied Tabuu then creates a maze out of the areas that were transported into Subspace.

Master Hand being controlled by the Chains of Light.

However, thanks to the Dedede Brooches, two trophies who had been left behind - Luigi and Ness - were later revived and they proceed to revive Dedede himself after Ness realized that it was thanks to him that they were restored. Dedede joins their team and they rescue everyone, including Bowser, who had a fight with Dedede and soon joined the team when he learned about Master Hand's defeat. Around the same time, Kirby was revived by the brooch the captured princess had when he swallowed it and went out on his own to save the rest of the fighters, between the characters, there are Wario and Link and Zelda, the latter of which revive Ganondorf and suggest him to join them, which he begrudgingly agrees, Wario does as well and all the characters enter to the maze and battling the remainder of Tabuu's forces that reside within it. Upon reaching Tabuu, he attempts to turn everyone back into trophies again, but is ambushed by Sonic, who destroys his wings before he can do so. As a result, Tabuu's Off Waves are weakened, becoming "only" a one-hit KO attack instead of causing immediate trophification for any fighter in reach.

Tabuu's defeat.

A selection of characters from Sonic, Bowser, Kirby, Luigi's group and those revived by these two groups (first: Luigi, Ness and King Dedede; second: Kirby), then fight Tabuu. After his defeat, the Subspace Army is seemingly rendered defunct, the areas consumed by Subspace are restored and the Isle of the Ancients disappears afterwards because of the effect of so many Subspace Bombs going off at once (commanded by Ganondorf so Tabuu could get a Subspace Gunship into the world) making it impossible for the island to escape Subspace. A luminous cross is left in its place.

Tabuu is last seen contorting in pain shortly before the Great Maze was restored to its original places and forms. The events of World of Light suggest he survived.


As the final boss of The Subspace Emissary, Tabuu possesses a wide variety of dangerous attacks, which increase in power and speed on the higher difficulties. Several of his moves are guaranteed OHKOs at least on Intense difficulty. Additionally, Tabuu's attacks are faster and stronger in The Subspace Emissary than in Boss Battles at comparable difficulty ratings - as usual. The gap is wider on the lower difficulties (Easy overall) than on the highest ones (Intense in particular). Like any other boss, Tabuu's attacks get progressively slightly weaker the more continues the player uses, losing 2% damage up to 4 times. Likewise, Tabuu’s attacks become considerably more powerful in both damage and knockback when he has less than half HP remaining (this mechanic also works in Boss Battles).

Tabuu's attacks are considered to be extremely powerful but predictable. Even on Easy difficulty in Boss Battles, almost all his moves will KO middleweights not over 70% (usually below), and some will even OHKO if properly executed (with the exception of Eye Lasers, which KOs below 110%). However, dodging most of his attacks can be very easy if the player knows what is coming; this doesn't apply to Off Waves, which are very hard to avoid, cover the entire screen and required the use of very well-timed dodges. Without the Off Waves, many people consider Tabuu to be an easy boss due to his predictable moves and how he needs to wait until he can attack again, although some attacks are very difficult to prevent or avoid (such as Golden Bracket, Ghost Projection and Explosive Teleport).

Some of Tabuu's moves share a unique property: they could potentially OHKO the same players twice in a row, on the proper difficulty, if they are hit at the beginning and then immediately after they respawn. Off Waves are usually too fast to fulfil the required conditions but, if the players intentionally jump into the third ring, they can suffer a second OHKO. Notice that these attacks require a very strict timing to OHKO twice in a row, and are not guaranteed to do so.

The names of the attacks are sourced from the book Dairantō Smash Bros. X: The Complete Guide, save for "Teleport", which is not given a name.

First moves[edit]

  • Blade Charge (ブレードチャージ) - Tabuu transforms into a wide, somewhat shark-shaped blade, which flies horizontally across the stage with very high speed. Touching Tabuu during the transformation has the same effect of the hit itself, dealing enormous vertical knockback and very high damage (reaching 59% on Intense). It is dodgeable by performing an air dodge or, if at ground level, ducking (unless playing as Meta Knight). A perfectly timed sidestep dodge may also work. It is possible to perfect shield the attack, but a miss will result in the shield breaking, stunning the character in the process and leaving it vulnerable to further attacks. In the Subspace Emissary, it is an OHKO on Very Hard on middleweights if Tabuu has less than half HP remaining, and a guaranteed OHKO on Intense. In Boss Battles, it is one of Tabuu's strongest attacks, KOing below 20% on Intense. Since Tabuu frequently uses this move in midair, it is possible to avoid it simply by crouching or even without moving.
  • Tabuu Charge (タブーチャージ) - Tabuu teleports high above one side of the stage, turns his arm into a rainbow energy blade, and then dives at the player in a set curved arc while glowing in a golden and pearl aura. Because he will always go near the ground, it can be dodged by jumping over his attack in the middle of the stage or going on the edge of the stage. On higher difficulties Tabuu's body can KO middleweights at very low percentages (20%) it also acts very swift and is quite difficult to predict. Tabuu can be damaged by projectiles while performing this move, but touching it deals high knockback and damage (up to 42%). The sweetspot deals a maximum of 49%.
Tabuu's Movement Throw attack.
  • Movement Throw (移動投げ) - Tabuu transforms into an energy cage (resembling two glowing yellow brackets or butterfly wings) and flies across the stage, grabbing the character and slamming it into the floor for a semi-spike of immense power. This attack has low horizontal knockback on every difficulty, and can deal enormous damage on Intense: a huge 60%. On Hard or higher difficulties it becomes a guaranteed OHKO (on Hard, only if Tabuu has more than half HP left, heavyweights may survive at 0%). Characters with a grab aerial can survive by DI'ing downwards and attaching to the edge of the stage as they pass by, but this technique requires very strict timing, especially on Intense difficulty. There is no predetermined way the brackets fly, and when the player is not able to make a jump, they should try an air-dodge. It is one of the least predictable attacks of Tabuu and the second more powerful behind Off Waves (at least in knockback terms), making it really dangerous. On Very Hard difficulty and above, its power is more than enough to one-hit KO even metal or giant characters, making survival nearly impossible. This move resembles Tabuu's wings as seen in the background of the Portal in The Great Maze.

Second moves[edit]

  • Chain Throw (鎖で投げ) - Tabuu produces a Chain of Light (軽鎖) and throws it in front of him in an attempt to catch the player. Despite its range, it cannot catch those too close to him. If he succeeds, he will swing the player around before smashing them into the ground, with high knockback and considerable damage (up to 45%, or 47% at low HP). If played in co-op mode, the other player can be damaged by the hitbox generated by the attack. If Tabuu is defeated while grabbing a character with the Chain of Light, the Tabuu Whip glitch will occur. Additionally, if one uses a heavyweight fighter with a strong flinch resistance sticker, and uses a Super Mushroom or a Metal Box, at very low percentages on Easy difficulty the attack will not cause the player to flinch, and they will remain stuck on the chain in the T-pose until Tabuu teleports. This move is very swift and unpredictable: on higher difficulties, it requires less than a second to land, making it one of the most dangerous.
  • Discharge Attack (放電攻撃) - Tabuu teleports right next to the player. The purple sphere inside his torso splits into several fragments, which fly in circles around him for a short time while emitting electricity. This attack has a decent range that changes over time (rapidly increasing until it reaches its maximum for around five seconds, and then slowly decreasing), but leaves Tabuu wide open for projectile weapons. It somewhat resembles an atom, with Tabuu being the nucleus and his fragmented energy core being electrons; in fact, the spark rings attract the player with a very strong vacuum. Touching the sparkles or Tabuu's body deals a single powerful hit and up to 64%. Poor recovery characters will be KOed at 0%, since its knockback is perfectly horizontal or spiked (depending on how the hitboxes land). It is possible for the player to be damaged by the sparks without taking knockback or being sucked into Tabuu's body, but only if they are near enough to Tabuu; in this case, they will take up to 36% per hit instead of the direct damage, which can result in a huge combined damage output (over 200% on Intense). If the player is on the exact endpoint of the move's range, they will probably suffer multiple hits by the sparks before flinching and getting sucked in by the vacuum, which results in a guaranteed OHKO after touching Tabuu's body on Intense (damage can exceed 250%). However, this is unlikely, unless they are on the precise endpoint. Since the attack has a very powerful vacuum effect, it is possible for the player to be sucked again repeatedly until they is KOed. Another dangerous property of this move is that it has a very fast beginning, and also Tabuu's body will continue to have KO power even when the last sparks fades: this means that Tabuu can be directly attacked only after he uses Teleport. Eventually, if the player is offstage before the attack begins, Tabuu himself will probably appear offstage while executing the move, in some cases cancelling every possibility to harm the player.
  • Tabuu Smash (タブースマッシュ) - Tabuu teleports behind the player and repeatedly slashes the area in front of him with extremely swift karate chops, creating visible purple slashes. This move can easily catch and juggle players, but it has less range than the large visible slashes would indicate. Again, Tabuu leaves himself wide open to projectiles, and if the player gets behind him he can be hit - although it is dangerous, as the player can be trapped in the attack or hit by the chops with higher range. Certain melee attacks are also viable. It deals extremely high damage if all hits connect (quite over 300% in a less than three seconds on Intense). Even on Easy difficulty this attack can inflict up to 121% if all hits chain (or 132% if Tabuu has less than half HP remaining). Although Tabuu slashes a total of 13 times, the maximum number of hits is only 11, due to the rehit rate of the hitboxes. It can be easily SDI'd out of, also its activation is slow and very easy to prevent, except for the higher difficulties. However, if the player is hit and survives (avoiding the last slash), they will be left unharmed to further attacks, due to suffering a ludicrous damage output.
  • Tabuu Fire (タブーファイヤー) - From one side of the stage, Tabuu makes a pointing gesture. Five locations along a line leading to the player's current location will flash once and explode after about two seconds, creating huge fiery bursts in a very brief time (less than half a second for the whole sequence). The line is not straight and varies in height, also the explosions last for around a second. This move can easily be avoided by noting and staying away from the flashes, or crouching if the pointing line is high. Can also be shielded with perfect timing. It is an OHKO on Intense and deals up to 60%. Since its knockback is perfectly horizontal or a semi-spike, poor recovery characters are very likely to be KOed even on the lower difficulties. This attack is very predictable, but its speed and extremely large hitbox can make it difficult to avoid in time, considering that it covers the entire length of Tabuu's Residence and the bursts will always hit at different heights.
  • Clone Attack (分身攻撃) - Tabuu splits his body in half and shoots out many ghost images of himself in all directions, which burst after achieving a certain distance. The player can dodge the projections, but take note that they explode upon making contact with the ground, so combatants can still receive damage while sidestepping the projection itself (although severely reducing their knockback and damage). They can also be destroyed, preferably by projectiles. The number of projections is not constant, although it tends to increase with the difficulty and is usually set between ten and seventeen. Clones' knockback also varies, and can be either angled, vertical, spiked or horizontal; if perfectly horizontal or semi-spiked, it drastically increases the chances of a KO or even an OHKO for poor recovery characters. The distance they cover can also vary, slightly increasing with difficulty: on Easy, they cover more than half the length of Tabuu's Residence, while on Intense they almost cover the entire stage. Notice that each projection has a different direction, seemingly not always related to the player's position, and that Tabuu can shoot a maximum of two clones at the same time (up to four clones in a second on Intense). When the clones' explode touching the ground, their burst has a little hitbox and is much less dangerous than contact with the projection itself; however, it can still deal up to 24% damage and KO below 40% on Intense. Tabuu can be attacked with projectiles while performing this move, but not touched: contact with his sparkling body during the attack deals the same massive knockback of the initial explosion. This move is considered one of Tabuu's most dangerous attacks, and its swift, unpredictable beginning forces the player to pay attention before attacking Tabuu. A glitch can occur in the Subspace Emissary if Tabuu is hit by a Green Shell while performing this attack. The Shell will remain stuck into Tabuu's body, which completely nullifies and blocks the move, instantly destroying every projection he shoots until the attack ends (regardless of clones' direction). This allows the player to stay still without taking any damage or knockback by the attack, preventing its ludicrous damage and very high KO power. An interesting fact of this glitch is that the Green Shell doesn't get destroyed, but remains freezed for some seconds, until Tabuu uses Teleport and vanishes.

Third moves[edit]

  • Shadow Laser (シャドーレーザー) - Tabuu appears on the side of the stage and manifests a dragon head (also bearing similarities to the Dark Cannons), which floats beneath Tabuu as it spits out a powerful, bright azure laser horizontally across the stage. The beam has a huge hitbox and lasts for about three seconds, although only dealing a single hit when the player touches it. Jumping is advisable, although some characters may have a harder time dodging it this way. This move is a OHKO on Intense, dealing up to 67% (1-2% fresh). It is usually a semi-spike, but angled and not horizontal. Tabuu can be attacked while performing this move, although it is very dangerous; hitting the cannon will also damage Tabuu himself. The attack is predictable, but the laser can be really swift, and characters with low jump or recovery are quite more likely to get caught by the blast.
Tabuu using Tabuu Shot on Captain Falcon.
  • Tabuu Shot (タブーショット) - Tabuu appears in a random area in the air and fires a barrage of small bullets, finishing with a huge energy sphere. Easily avoided by keeping a safe distance from him; the bullet chain always lasts for less than three seconds, with a brief additional time for the huge energy sphere (about one second on Intense). It seems to be the least frequently used attack of the Third Moves, but punishes overzealous jumping that would be done to avoid the other two attacks. Still, pattern memorization will give his location away if he's about to use this attack; namely, if Tabuu appears anywhere not off the edge of the stage, he will use Tabuu Shot. On Intense, a player fully hit by all hitboxes can sustain almost 400% damage before being invariably KOed. The huge energy sphere inflicts up to 54% and immense vertical knockback, being a guaranteed OHKO on Very Hard or higher difficulties; however, despite being enormous in size (much larger than Zelda's Din's Fire), its hitbox has roughly the same dimension of the sphere itself, not more - even though it explodes on the ground. The bullets inflict small set knockback but deal extremely high damage (quite over 300% on Intense if all hits connect); they are also very dangerous, since the player gets trapped and suffers multiple hits before being released. Apparently, their maximum combined damage increases by 44% per difficulty, except for Very Hard to Intense in the Subspace Emissary (where the gap is reduced to 29%). Tabuu can be attacked while performing this move, but it becomes very dangerous when the first hitbox ends, since touching the electrical sphere on his hand (noticed due to a red flash) can KO early on every difficulty (because Tabuu is high and closer to the upper blast line, and this move's knockback is almost straight up).
  • Tabuu Boomerang (タブーブーメラン) - Tabuu appears on one side of the stage and throws a huge, circular, three-bladed shuriken, which flies across the stage like a boomerang before he catches it. Avoided by jumping and using the up special move (depending on character) to avoid the second swing. The boomerang only has three blades, but the speed of its spin makes it look like it has about nine. At higher levels, the player may need to dodge both the throw and the return in one jump, due to its very high speed (it could cover the entire length of Tabuu's Residence in roughly three seconds, including throw and catch phases). Players with poor recovery or low jump will have much more difficulty in dodging. The first swing deals massive angled or semi-spiked knockback, KOing at very low percentages, and inflicts slightly more damage than the second one (48% against 44% on Intense). Tabuu can be attacked while performing this move, with some risks.

Fourth moves[edit]

Unlike the other three sets, where the moves are picked at random, Tabuu will always alternate between Off Waves and Eye Lasers for his fourth set (i.e. Off Waves on 4th and 12th move, Eye Lasers on 8th and 16th move), making it easy to predict. Due to this repeated scheme, it seems that Tabuu needs to charge his power for a while before unleashing either one.

Tabuu with his wings.
  • Off Waves (OFF波動) (also called Winged Tabuu) - Tabuu warps to the background and unfolds his wings (resembling a butterfly's in shape, but made of intricate curving symbols). He then charges up before flashing a large orange symbol and releasing three red circular shockwaves from his chest. They encompass the entire stage, dealing extreme damage and knockback. In The Subspace Emissary, even on Easy difficulty a single wave will deal 73%-78% damage and massive knockback, enough to OHKO middleweights if Tabuu has less than half HP remaining, while on Normal and above it's a guaranteed OHKO on everyone, inflicting 139% damage, and 143% damage when Tabuu has less than half HP left. As he is in the background, Tabuu can't take damage in his Winged form. Off Waves are so powerful that even metal or giant characters will be OHKOed, usually starting from Hard difficulty. This infamous attack is not easy to dodge but is most straightforwardly possible by either sidestepping, rolling three times in a row with accurate timing, or quick air dodges (such as air dodging into Sonic's Spring Jump spring). If playing as Pokémon Trainer or Zelda/Sheik, the temporary invulnerability granted by using the down special transformation at the right time (the instant Tabuu extends his wings) also works. It can also be survived by using moves with armor, but the timing required is extremely difficult. It is possible to actually survive being hit by a wave if the player is in the air under the stage, where they can DI and ceiling tech, but this requires very high precision to pull off, and the character must also have a good recovery to make it back. When faced in Boss Battles, Tabuu's Off Waves are made much weaker, to compensate for the player only having one stock instead of six, and no continues, items or stickers. On Easy difficulty, one wave will deal 29% damage with moderate knockback, no longer being Tabuu's strongest attack (knockback-wise). On higher difficulties, both damage and knockback rapidly increase, becoming Tabuu's strongest attack again on Hard difficulty, and regaining the ability to one-hit KO on Intense difficulty. This makes it the only guaranteed OHKO in Boss Battles.
  • Eye Laser (アイレーザー) - Tabuu grows to a size so large that only his head appears on the side of the screen (either left or right). He then fires a red laser from each eye, and only the lasers' hitboxes inflict damage. On Intense it can KO well below 50%, even around 32% for lighter characters (but on Easy difficulty in Boss Battles it KOs slightly over 100% from the center of the stage). However, being hit while midair can drastically increase the chances of an early KO, due to the beams' perfectly vertical knockback, also it is a very good combo, easily hitting a character twice in a row after launching them in midair. For these reasons, airborne characters are much more likely to be KOed at low percentages. Each hit can also deal massive damage: up to 48% on Intense (reduced to 32% on the same difficulty in Boss Battles). It can be very easily avoided by hiding right at the end of the stage, literally under Tabuu's chin, allowing the player to easily damage him, mainly by using up tilts or up smashes (though some moves that push the fighter backwards may move the player into the beams). Every damage Tabuu takes in this status is halved. Unlike Master Hand and Crazy Hand's lasers, Tabuu's ones do not drift off the stage, so one will be hit as long as they are in front of him. They have also a much larger hitbox, and can reach almost three quarters of Tabuu's Residence's height. A glitch can occur if the character defeats Tabuu when he's using Eye Lasers. When the battle shows him flying off into the Subspace background, in pain, his head will be covered in the same red colored light that shot out from his eyes. This results in a sort of crimson "aura" surrounding his head. This effect lasts until the screen fades to black.


  • Teleport - Tabuu teleports around the stage and appears at a set spawn which is randomly decided from the large amount of spawns available. He can spawn at different heights, up to around three quarters of Tabuu's Residence's height. This move can be randomly used once or multiple times in a row (up to five). He also sometimes teleports behind the character and attacks with one of the available attacks. Tabuu makes a distinctive sound on his final teleport.
  • Explosion Attack (爆発攻撃) - Tabuu teleports around, leaving a red explosion everywhere he teleports from. Touching the burst deals perfectly vertical knockback, with enormous KO potential and high damage (up to 45% on Intense). Since it KOs at very low percentages even on average difficulties, the player must not be too eager to attack Tabuu during his teleports and must always pay attention before attacking him. Crouching or simply staying still is the best way to avoid every hit, since this move cannot harm grounded players. Due to being extremely unpredictable and powerful, this attack is usually considered one of the most dangerous of Tabuu's moveset. The only weakness is that the bursts last for a brief time and have a very small hitbox but, since they can appear at different heights, attention must always be payed. Notice that this Teleport is always used five times in a row, and that the final teleport lacks the usual distinctive sound.


Data.png This article or section may require additional technical data.
The editor who added this tag elaborates: Move order numbers (eg. Rayquaza#Moveset)
You can discuss this issue on the talk page or edit this page to improve it.

Though not playable, Tabuu is controllable by hacking the game in Boss Battles Mode. After hacking the game, the controller used must be a GameCube Controller and must be plugged into the player 3 slot. The start button will cause him to self-destruct, as it does for all other bosses.

Move Input Description
Blade Charge A Tabuu turns into a shark shape and flies across the stage.
Eye Laser A+D-Pad Tabuu shoots lasers from his eyes.
Tabuu Charge A+D-Pad Tabuu swoops down onto the stage holding a blade.
Tabuu Smash A+D-Pad Tabuu rapidly slashes the air with karate chops.
Discharge Attack A+D-Pad Electricity swirls around Tabuu in multiple rings.
Tabuu Fire B Tabuu points and causes multiple explosions.
Tabuu Shot B+D-Pad Tabuu shoots a chain of bullets, followed by a huge fireball.
Tabuu Boomerang B+D-Pad Tabuu throws a boomerang.
Shadow Laser B+D-Pad Tabuu summons a dark dragon that shoots a huge, azure horizontal laser across the stage.
Clone Attack B+D-Pad Tabuu shoots multiple projections of himself. The amount of projections is not always the same.
Off Waves X Tabuu opens his wings and blasts three red rings outward from the background. It is always a one-hit KO.
Chain Throw L Tabuu uses his chain. If he grabs the player with it, he will slam them into the ground. If two players are playing, he will slam the caught player into the other player.
Movement Throw R Tabuu turns into golden brackets. If he grabs the player, he will slam them into the ground.
Explosion Attack Unusable move 1 Tabuu teleports and explosions suddenly occur wherever he teleports.
Teleport Unusable move 2 Tabuu teleports around the stage.

Moveset gallery[edit]

HP and damage taken[edit]

HP Values Lowest difficulty Below-middle difficulty Middle difficulty Above-middle difficulty Highest difficulty
The Great Maze 335 455 535 635 745
Boss Battles 111 160 212.5 265 405
  EffectIcon(Normal).png EffectIcon(Slash).png EffectIcon(Electric).png EffectIcon(Freezing).png EffectIcon(Flame).png The icon for the grass effect. EffectIcon(Water).png EffectIcon(Darkness).png EffectIcon(Aura).png Specials: Direct Specials: Indirect
Damage taken ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0 ×1.0

Like all bosses in Brawl, Tabuu gains an additional ×0.6 damage resistance modifier when fought in co-op mode, effectively gaining 67% more health. This modifier is applied whenever the second player is in-game, and is no longer applied if the second player loses all their stocks. In Boss Battles Mode, the same change is applied without any difference, but either player being KO'd results in a game over. Notice that the health gap between the Subspace Emissary and Boss Battles Mode is higher on lower difficulties (around two thirds on Easy) than on the higher ones (around 40% on Intense).


Tabuu's main trophy is unlocked by using a Trophy Stand on Tabuu. The "Tabuu (Wings)" trophy is obtained by beating Boss Battles Mode with all characters, and can't be unlocked with a hammer, except for the PAL version. In the original Japanese version and several translations, this trophy is called "Winged Tabuu" instead.

Tabuu's trophy in Brawl
The ruler of Subspace and master of operations. Tabuu controls Master Hand with chains of light to excise this world and build up his great maze. He used Shadow Bugs to form Subspace and manipulates the servants of Master Hand to his heart's content. Born in a vastly foreign realm, he also possesses great leadership powers. Tabuu... No name is more suitable.
Wii: Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Tabuu (Wings)'s trophy in Brawl
Tabuu (Wings)
Tabuu with wings extended. The dreadful energy surges cast from these wings instantly turn all fighters back into trophies. Knowing this, King Dedede assembles all able-bodied troops and sets a timed device on each of them. This device is a brooch that, after the designated time runs out, revives all fighters wiped out by Tabuu.
Wii: Super Smash Bros. Brawl


Tabuu appears in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as a Legend-class primary spirit.

In Adventure Mode: World of Light, Tabuu is presumably one of the countless spirits captured by Galeem during his takeover of the universe. After Galeem's defeat, Dharkon takes control of Galeem's spirits, including Tabuu. Tabuu's spirit is located in the Mysterious Dimension sub-dungeon of The Dark Realm as the penultimate battle before Marx. Prior to his battle, the player is quizzed on which spirit was the mastermind behind the Subspace Army.

Tabuu's Spirit Battle uses a giant Metal Bayonetta puppet fighter, referencing how Tabuu and Bayonetta feature butterfly wings, and is fought on the Final Destination stage. During the battle, the player's fighter will be occasionally inflicted with sudden damage, referencing Tabuu's damaging Off-Waves.

No. Image Name Type Class Slots Base Power Max Power Base Attack Max Attack Base Defense Max Defense Ability Series
SSBU spirit Tabuu.png
★★★★ 3 4208 10522 2353 5883 1473 3683 PSI Attack ↑ Super Smash Bros. Series


At least three glitches can occur during the battle against Tabuu:

  • Tabuu Whip glitch occurs when the player air techs or dodges into his Chain Throw. If properly done, they will get stuck beneath Tabuu's legs and be unable to free themself until Tabuu KOs the character. Being under the effects of a Metal Box, Super Mushroom or a strong flinch resistance sticker attacked will also cause this glitch; it can potentially occur on Easy difficulty in Boss Battles but it's very unlikely. A variation of the glitch can be performed in co-op mode by having one character land the final blow on Tabuu while the other is caught by the Chain Throw. Doing this, Tabuu will be defeated without releasing the character from his grab, resulting in that character being frozen in a tumbling pose in the center of the stage while Tabuu falls away, and disappearing at the same time the boss does if a loose explosive does not knock them out. [2]
  • Another glitch can occur in the Subspace Emissary if Tabuu is hit by a Green Shell while performing Clone Attack. The shell will remain stuck and completely nullify Tabuu's move, instantly destroying every clone he shoots until the attack ends. The glitch finishes when Tabuu teleports away.
  • A third glitch can occur if the player defeats Tabuu while he is using Eye Laser. When the battle shows him flying off into the Subspace background, his head will be covered in the same red light that shot out from his eyes. [3]

Names in other languages[edit]

Language Name
Japan Japanese タブー, Tabuu
UK English Tabuu
France French Tabbou
Germany German Tabuh
Spain Spanish Tabuu
Italy Italian Tabuu
China Chinese 禁忌
South Korea Korean 타부, Tabuu
Netherlands Dutch Tabuu
Russia Russian Табуу


A close up on Tabuu's Blade Charge, showing the circuit board pattern
  • Tabuu's wings, along with his body in the shark blade attack, have a circuit board pattern on them. Some sections even appear to have chips on them.
  • The dragon head summoned during the "Shadow Laser" attack resembles a Dark Cannon. Its attack is also somewhat like Marx's mouth laser.
  • Tabuu is the only boss in Brawl to lack an official artwork.
  • In Super Smash Bros. 4, if the final transformation of Master Core isn't defeated after 45 seconds, it will shake rapidly and rise to the center of the screen, then flash the same symbol from Tabuu's Off Waves, and unleash five shock waves. This attack will similarly one-hit KO the player, but only on 8.0 or higher difficulty.
  • In the Mysterious Dimension of World of Light, Tabuu's spirit guards Marx's boss fight. This may reference how Marx and Tabuu share several attacks, such as their tendency to rapidly teleport and fire laser beams.
  • Tabuu seemingly possesses two attacks which are not used during the final battle. In the cutscenes, it is seen using a powerful azure shield to defeat Master Hand, and even without the wings he unleashes a rainbow circling wave (potentially similar to an Off Wave) that turns Ganondorf into a trophy. Tabuu also uses multiple Chains of Light to subjugate Master Hand, and his Off Waves are much stronger while the wings are intact.

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