Wario (ワリオ, Wario) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He was officially revealed on June 12th, 2018 alongside Little Mac and the rest of the returning roster. Wario is classified as Fighter #30.
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Wario is a short heavyweight character with a great air game and surprisingly fantastic movement in the air. He boasts the 8th fastest air speed in the game, in addition to being tied for the 2nd best air acceleration. Wario also sports an above average falling speed and the 26th highest gravity, which alongside the previous attributes gives him an amazing aerial prowess despite having low jumps. However, his grounded mobility pales in comparison, as his dashing speed and traction are average at best, and his walking speed is the 12th slowest in the game. Using his high mobility and versatile aerial attacks, Wario is able to dip in and out of the fray to bait attacks and punish. Wario's attacks in general also tend to be disjointed, as his hands don't have a hurtbox. He's also fairly hard to hit since he's relatively nimble and short for a heavy character, though fairly wide, meaning he can still be vulnerable to combos and juggles.
Furthermore, Wario boasts strong aerials, with his down, and back aerials being potent kill moves, while the up aerial is a highly damaging juggling and combo extension tool, with limited killing ability as well. Thanks to Ultimate's universal 3-frame jumpsquat, he can finally utilize his forward and neutral aerials as fast moves that can combo and pressure his opponents. Wario's air control and quick aerials also make him very effective at edgeguarding.
Wario's ground game contrasts with his air game in that it focuses more on power than speed. His forward tilt and forward smash are among the strongest in the cast, although both are rather slow, and the latter is best suited for hard reads. His up and down tilts are great combo tools that could potentially lead into kill moves, and his new shoulder tackle dash attack is both extremely fast in terms of startup and one of the strongest dash attacks in the game.
Wario's grabs are not particularly fast but have above average range. His throws have their fair share utility, with his up throw being able to combo into his up aerial and his down throw being both quite damaging and great for keeping opponents close to pressure them further. Forward throw deals decent damage, and back throw having a strong collateral hitbox that is good at knocking away other combatants.
Wario's special moves are also very unorthodox, and they demand practice to be usable at their highest potentials. Chomp is one of the best command grabs in the game, having deceptively long range and decent startup. It heals Wario if it connects, can effectively cover certain edge recoveries and even kill at high percents, negate certain attacks such as Wonderwing, and absorb many projectiles, often with the benefit of further healing him and slightly increasing the charge of his Wario Waft. His Waft is his most significant move because, with time, it is a highly damaging kill move with an extremely fast startup. With Waft in his arsenal, any match can be turned around with the right read. Wario Bike gives Wario an unorthodox approach option that covers for his fairly slow ground movement, and the bike itself continues to move forward and hit opposing fighters even after Wario dismounts it. This gives him a large pseudo-projectile which can apply pressure when used effectively, but the bike has a respawn time which prevents this from being used as a normal projectile. It can be used to surprise unsuspecting players as an approach tool that can blow past some projectiles, dismounted and thrown like an item with kill power, a very effective recovery tool, and a way for Wario to heal and charge his Waft when he eats it. On the flip side, Wario cannot shield or dodge while on the bike and is vulnerable, opponents can throw it right back at him, and if it's destroyed, he has to wait six seconds before using it again, which can leave him helpless while recovering as his up special, the Corkscrew is rather lackluster as a recovery on its own (although it is a decent out-of-shield option as it is his fastest recovery move).
For all of his strengths, Wario does have several weaknesses to counterbalance them. His range is rather mediocre, especially in moves such as neutral aerial and forward aerial, and he lacks projectile attacks outside of a dismounted Wario Bike and thus must take a risk to deal damage. While his bike recovery can go a far distance, it is fairly easy to gimp him when he uses it, so Wario players have to be careful with when and how it is used. While Wario does have some fast moves, he is certainly slower and heavier on average than most characters that share his weaknesses, so he can sometimes be overwhelmed in the neutral against small characters with better range than him. Wario will have to use his overall high mobility to bait his opponents into making mistakes and capitalize on them with his highly damaging combos and powerful kill moves.
Despite having a variety of KO moves, Wario can have a difficult time landing them. Firstly, he is burdened with a rather poor set of smash attacks. All three have extremely high ending lag and are very unsafe on shield making them easily punishable while only having average or slightly above average power. Forward smash is very strong but suffers from slow startup and very high ending lag with deceptively short range, up smash has decent startup and grants Wario head intangibility, but has massive ending lag to the point where Wario will be standing at the end of the animation of the move and still be in lag. Finally, down smash has fast startup coming out on frame 8, but has extreme ending lag and very mediocre power which makes it one of Wario's least useful moves. His other KO moves such as his Back aerial, forward tilt and Dash attack also suffer from being sluggish or predictable on top of lacking legitimate kill throws as his forward throw has had its knockback reduced from its previous iteration. This means Wario can often be reliant on Wario Waft for an easier, early KO and is left with a more difficult process of finishing off opponents should it miss.
All in all, Wario is a quite mobile and versatile heavyweight brawler that rewards patient players who know how to use his movement and signature Waft to their fullest potentials. His damage-racking ability and kill power also rewards players heavily for finding creative ways to get around his rather poor range and lack of a proper projectile, and his versatile options and movement give players just the tools to do it.
Changes from Super Smash Bros. 4
Possibly due to his lower tier status in Smash 4 (41st out of 55), Wario has been significantly buffed in his transition to Ultimate. As with the rest of the returning cast, Wario's overall mobility has been improved, allowing for safer approaches and recovery. Directional air dodges also add a new option to his already great and versatile recovery. Changes to game mechanics have also benefited him, as the universal 3-frame jumpsquat allows him to utilize his strong air game better than he previously could in addition to giving him more viable out of shield options in his neutral and forward aerials, while the lower landing lag on aerial attacks makes Wario's neutral, forward and up aerials more reliable for starting combos. His neutral aerial has also been altered, as it has more range, its two hits linger for much longer, and the move now has an extremely lenient amount of ending lag of only four frames. Wario has also received multiple new kill moves, most notably his new dash attack, which deals greater knockback, and can also be used as an effective tech-chasing tool; his back aerial has also received increased knockback, making it more powerful. Chomp also now heals damage from Wario when biting an opponent or eating projectiles, overall improving his already good survivability. Lastly, some of Wario's attacks have more range due to better hitbox placements.
Wario did receive a few nerfs, however, with the most notable being to the Wario Bike. Similarly to its Brawl incarnation, the bike can no longer be used immediately after despawning or being destroyed, forcing Wario to wait 6 seconds before it can be used again. As such, Wario cannot always rely on the bike for recovery, should he end up offstage while its cooldown is in effect. However, the bike's new scaled knockback helps compensate when used offensively as a projectile. Another notable nerf Wario received is that his forward throw, previously his only throw with consistently good KO potential, is much weaker due to its redistributed damage output. As a result, his grab game has become more limited, as he no longer has any reasonably viable kill throws.
Overall, Wario's buffs drastically outweigh his nerfs, and he has been a very high-placing character in many top-level Ultimate tournaments thanks to fantastic results from players Tweek, Glutonny, Abadango, Zackray, and kameme utilizing him to win or place high at multiple major tournaments. Due to his fantastic results and strengths, Wario is widely regarded as a top-tier character, in stark contrast to his mediocre SSB4 iteration, and likely his best incarnation in the entire series.
Throws and other attacks
Wario received buffs, nerfs and a few glitch fixes, but was moderately nerfed overall. Update 2.0.0 made Wario grab the ledge sooner after using down aerial. Update 3.0.0 brought slight buffs to Chomp, increasing its swallow box size and giving it less ending lag after eating a small projectile. 3.0.0 also made it so Wario would flash yellow when Wario Bike was ready to use again. Update 8.0.0 fixed Wario's forward throw so that the hitbox no longer blatantly misses characters like Ganondorf, and lowered the ending lag when Wario ate food using Chomp. Update 9.0.0 buffed Corkscrew so that now it links more reliably and deals more damage overall.
While most changes were negligible, patch 11.0.0 affected Wario the most. His up tilt was given less active frames, and the third and max level of Wario Waft have more startup and ending lag. Though as compensation, the super armor on the max Waft now starts earlier and lasts longer. All these changes together nerfed one of Wario's notoriously dangerous and easiest set-ups, and making Wario Waft less effective overall.
Update 13.0.1 graced Wario with small buffs for one last time, making his neutral attack deal more damage and have less ending lag.
While Wario was made a less effective character overall, it was not enough to massively dent Wario's status and prowess in competitive play, and Wario is still seen as a top tier character with fantastic results to this day.
For a gallery of Wario's hitboxes, see here.
Note: All numbers are listed as base damage, without the 1v1 multiplier.
In competitive play
Since the beginning of Ultimate's metagame, Wario was commonly said to be superior to his previous iterations due to his more consistent KO options, his already fast speed being further increased, and his stronger, more reliable combo game. His waft is also notorious as a comeback mechanic for closing out stocks when in a dire or last stock situation. Wario also benefits from having a frame 3 jumpsquat greatly as he can now make more use out of his air game.
Unlike in Smash 4 where Wario's results diminished as the metagame went on, he has maintained the same level of success from all of his top players. Tweek, in particular, has won several majors with the character, winning Let's Make Moves, Glitch 6, Frostbite 2019, and Glitch 8. Glutonny is also the best player in Europe by a large margin, having won almost every European major and placing consistently high at majors in North America, most notably winning Pound 2022 and getting 2nd at GENESIS 8 with the character. Japan developed Wario's potential even further as he is one of the most represented characters in Japan, with many players such as Abadango, kameme, and Nietono using him as a main or secondary. Due to his dominance across the world, opinions on Wario have been extremely positive as ESAM, Leffen, MkLeo, Maister, Marss, and VoiD believe that the character is among top 5 in the game with Dabuz and Tea claiming that he is the absolute best character in the game.
However, this is slightly debatable due to nerfs that Wario received in patch 11.0.0 which nerfed his up tilt and his Wario Waft. These nerfs have made it noticeably harder for Wario to land his easiest confirms into waft. On top of that, Wario's notorious combo game is worse due to up tilt's nerf. Therefore Wario is seen as a less effective character than before; the extent of which is currently unknown, however.
Despite this, Wario is still seen as a top tier and is much better than his iteration in Smash 4.
Most historically significant players
Any number following the Smasher name indicates placement on the Fall 2019 PGRU, which recognizes the official top 50 players in the world in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate from July 13th, 2019 to December 15th, 2019.
See also: Category:Wario professionals (SSBU)
Classic Mode: I'm-a Gonna Win!
While the English title refers to Wario's catchphrase in the international version of Mario Kart 64: "I'm-a Wario! I'm-a gonna win!", the Japanese title (オレ様怪力ナンバーワン！) more accurately reflects the theme of the route, translating roughly to "My super strength is number one!"
Role in World of Light
Although Wario does not appear in the World of Light opening cutscene, he was vaporized and later imprisoned alongside the rest of the fighters (except Kirby) when Galeem unleashed his beams of light.
Wario was one of the many fighters that fell under Dharkon's control upon Galeem's first defeat. He can be found in the Dracula's Castle sub-area. A switch must be pressed to change the orientation of the lever blocking him.
Wario'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 Wario has been unlocked. Unlocking Wario 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 classic outfit has a fighter spirit of its own, available through the shop. Each fighter spirit has an alternate version that replaces them with their artwork in Ultimate.
Wario also makes an appearance as a legend-class primary spirit as his alter ego, Wario-Man.
In Spirit battles
As the main opponent
As a minion
Fighter Showcase Video