Toon Link (SSBU)
Toon Link (トゥーンリンク, Toon Link) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was officially confirmed as playable on June 12th, 2018. Toon Link is classified as fighter #43.
How to unlock
Complete one of the following:
With the exception of the third method, Toon Link must then be defeated on Pirate Ship.
Differences from Young Link
Because both Toon Link and Young Link are lighter and faster clones of the original Link, Toon Link is considered a counterpart to Young Link. However, Toon Link has a fair share of unique attacks and animations that set him apart from both Links.
Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4
Inspite of being a high tier character in SSB4 (23rd out of 55 characters), Toon Link has received a mix of buffs and nerfs in the transition from Smash 4 to Ultimate, but it's currently unclear whether he has been nerfed or buffed overall. As with other characters, his mobility has been improved thanks to faster walking and dashing speeds, and he falls faster as well. Many of his grounded options have been improved: Jab can now jab lock and tech chase better, forward tilt has less ending lag and one hitbox is more consistent, down tilt launches lower, improving its tech chasing potential, dash attack is much faster, has more range and the sweetspots outprioritize the sourspot, and up smash is more consistent. These buffs have vastly improved his grounded game from Smash 4, especially due to the addition of using tilts out of a run. Toon Link's aerial game has also improved, with the reduced landing lag on his aerials making it easier for him to combo and land; his neutral aerial has more range, forward aerial can once again autocancel in a short hop, his up aerial is notably much safer to use, and his back aerial is faster and has regained some of its old combo potential. Toon Link's down smash also sees better usage with the changes to its hitboxes, making the move far more consistent and practical for offensive usage, with both hits having strong KO potential. Finally, Toon Link's Spin Attack has received the most improvements, with the grounded version now being one of the best out of shield options in the game due to it being much faster and gaining kill potential, while the aerial version's power and safety has improved, greatly improving his sword attacks overall.
However, Toon Link also received some noticeable nerfs. One of his biggest nerfs was to his Forward smash, which is slower, has lower damage potential, possesses no mixup or spacing potential with a second hit, and has a debatably worse hitbox that fails to strike short opponents or ones hanging to the ledge. His other major nerf was to his Bombs, which no longer beat weak projectiles; instead bouncing off of them. This massively worsens their potential in trade and projectile situations. His up smash has fewer active frames (although it has better consistency), his back aerial is no longer a KOing move (although it has some form of combo potential), and his up tilt has inferior combo potential due to the changes to its knockback.
These changes have significantly changed the way Toon Link must be played in competitive play, shifting from primarily a zoner and counter-zoner style, to a more movement and pressure based playstyle that utilizes his sword attacks more. Toon Link was initially thought to fare worse than in two previous games due to the changes, with most top professionals ranking him as a mid-tier, and notably lower than the two other Links. However, later on many dedicated Toon Link professionals such as Sigma, Hyuga, Ri-ma, Tsuna and Xcal have seen very strong results in-region with the character, indicating that Toon Link is still a potent character. As a result, his representation has been more positive than before, with most professionals ranking him as a high-tier character, with ESAM saying he is the best of the three Links.
Toon Link has been buffed overall from game updates.
For a gallery of Toon Link's hitboxes, see here.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
In competitive play
Toon Link was seen as one of the most underrated characters in the game because he has been overshadowed by the return of Young Link and Link's new Breath of the Wild design. In the early months of Ultimate's release, he was seen as a mid tier and the worst of the three Links. But over time, Toon Link's representation was huge in Japan through players, such as Ri-ma, Sigma, and Lv.1. These players have been consistently getting top 8's and top 16's at some of the biggest tournaments there, including the 2nd largest Japanese tournament, Umebura Japan Major 2019 and several Sumabatos and Umeburas.
Because of this, Toon Link is notably viewed as a high tier, with some, such as ESAM, Goblin, and Nairo, with the former placing him as the best of the three Links through his consistent damage output, KO confirms through his projectiles, and his results in Japan. Later Patch 7.0.0 gave him new combo opportunities with less endlag on dash attack and stronger knockback with down smash and down aerial. This allowed him more viability in the current meta of Ultimate with more players seeing his strengths over the other two Links.
Classic Mode: The Teamwork of Courage
Toon Link fights alongside two CPU Toon Link teammates in all of his battles, likely referencing The Legend of Zelda: Tri Force Heroes. Toon Link fights characters from different universes in each stage.
Note: When fighting Squirtle, Ivysaur, and Charizard, their respective Pokémon Trainers are absent.
Role in World of Light
Although Toon Link does not appear in the World of Light opening cutscene, he was vaporized and later imprisoned alongside the rest of the fighters (sans Kirby) when Galeem unleashed his beams of light.
Toon Link is unlocked in the Forest Hill sub-area of the Light Realm. To awaken him, the player must activate a nearby switch which extends the bridge and defeat the spirit of Zelda (Breath of the Wild) that's in front of him.
Toon Link's Fighter Spirit can be obtained by completing Classic Mode. It is also available periodically for purchase in the shop for 500 coins. Unlocking Toon Link in World of Light allows the player to preview the first spirit below in the Spirit List under the name "???". As a Fighter Spirit, it cannot be used in Spirit Battles and is purely aesthetic. Each Fighter Spirit has an alternate version that replaces them with their artwork in Ultimate.
Additionally, this incarnation of Link and others under the same artstyle appear in a few Primary and Support Spirits.
In Spirit battles
As the main opponent
As a minion
Character Showcase Video