Ivysaur lashes a vine from its flower, which functions as both an attack and a tether recovery. On the ground, Vine Whip hits at a forty-five degree angle in front of and above Ivysaur, with a powerful sweetspot at the end of the whip that deals slightly more damage and much more knockback. In the air, the move has the same attacking capability as on the ground, and also grants Ivysaur a small height boost.
The move can be used as a tether recovery in the air when it is within range of an edge. The tether range is even longer than the range that the move has as an attack. Like other tethers, when Ivysaur is hanging by its tether, it will pull itself up to grab the edge upon player input or automatically after it has been hanging for a few seconds.
In Brawl, Vine Whip will cause helplessness when used in the air if it does not tether to an edge. Due to the predictable nature of tether recoveries, Ivysaur can easily be edgehogged while attempting to use Vine Whip to recover.
In Ultimate, Vine Whip does not cause helplessness, allowing the move to be used an indefinite number of times in the air. However, the height boost granted by the move only applies once until Ivysaur grabs an edge or lands. The lack of edgehogging in the game removes a crucial weakness of Ivysaur's recovery with this move. Additionally, when the move is used as an attack, it can be angled with directional input, so that the whip covers more vertical range but less horizontal range, or vice-versa.
In the Pokémon series, Vine Whip is a physical Grass-type attack introduced in Generation I, which involves hitting the foe with an outstretched vine. It is a rather weak move, learned by the Bulbasaur family and several other Grass-type Pokémon at a low level. In the Pokémon animated series, some Grass-type Pokémon (including Bulbasaur) are sometimes depicted using their vines to grab and manipulate objects.