Zero Suit Samus (SSB4)

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This article is about Zero Suit Samus's appearance in Super Smash Bros. 4. For the character in other contexts, see Zero Suit Samus.
Zero Suit Samus
in Super Smash Bros. 4
Zero Suit Samus
MetroidSymbol.svg
Universe Metroid
Other Smash Bros. appearance in Brawl

Availability Starter
Final Smash Gunship
Tier A (6)
ZeroSuitSamusHeadSSB4-U.png
Zero Suit Samus Zeroes In!
—Introduction Tagline

Zero Suit Samus (ゼロスーツサムス, Zero Suit Samus) is a playable character in Super Smash Bros. 4. Her return to the series was announced during a Super Smash Bros. Direct on April 8th, 2014,[1] which coincided with the 10th anniversary of the European release of Metroid: Zero Mission. Like Sheik, Zero Suit Samus is now a standalone character, which means that she cannot activate or deactivate her Power Suit under any circumstances. Alésia Glidewell reprises her role as Zero Suit Samus' voice actor, albeit via recycled voice clips from Super Smash Bros. Brawl.

Zero Suit Samus is currently ranked 6th out of 55 on the tier list. This is a slight improvement from her high-tier placement in Brawl, where she was ranked 9th out of 38. Zero Suit Samus possesses a dominant air game: her neutral and back aerials are safe and reliable set-up and KOing options, respectively, whereas her up aerial is an incredibly effective juggling option that also boasts KO potential.

Zero Suit Samus' punishment potential is also one of the greatest among the cast, courtesy of her fast and nimble mobility, a paralyzing projectile in Paralyzer, and a potent combo game that can quickly rack up damage or even KO outright. In addition, she possesses a long-distanced and varied recovery, thanks to having two tether recoveries, a third jump in Flip Jump and her new up special, Boost Kick.

Although she has outstanding strengths, Zero Suit Samus nevertheless has some noticeable weaknesses. Her ground game is unimpressive compared to her air game, which is most evident with her grab game: her grabs' long ranges are offset by their extreme amounts of start-up and ending lag, while her forward, back and up throws have very minimal utility outside of dealing damage.

By extension, many of Zero Suit Samus' hitboxes are positioned high above the ground, which can make it very difficult for her to fight against small characters. Even though Zero Suit Samus' air game is excellent, none of her aerials are effective combo breakers, which is further compounded by her susceptibility to combos. Altogether, these traits give Zero Suit Samus a weak neutral game.

Regardless of her flaws, Zero Suit Samus is widely considered to be a very viable character in competitive play, as shown by Nairo and Marss winning numerous national and regional tournaments, respectively.

Attributes[edit]

Zero Suit Samus is a tall lightweight who boasts overall excellent mobility, thanks to several of her attributes being among the top 10 of their respective categories. Her walking speed is tied with Sheik's for the fifth fastest, her dashing speed is the fifth fastest, her air speed is tied with the default Mii Brawler's for the sixth fastest, her traction is tied with Little Mac and Wario's for the third highest, her air acceleration is tied with Lucas and Bayonetta's for the eighth fastest, and her jump is the third highest. Unlike most lightweights, Zero Suit Samus has very quick falling speed, high gravity and, like in her home series, is able to crawl and wall jump.

Zero Suit Samus' greatest asset is her superb air game. In addition to her excellent aerial attributes, her short hop is tied with Bayonetta's for the second highest in the game, which collectively supplement her useful aerial attacks. Neutral aerial has long range, low landing lag and launches at 55°, all of which make it very useful for follow-ups. Forward aerial is quick and fairly powerful, making it useful as part of a combo at low percentages, and a dependable off-stage KOing option. Back aerial has long range and high power, making it her most reliable aerial KOing option. Up aerial is very quick, has very low base knockback, very high knockback scaling, and launches opponents vertically, all of which make it excellent at juggling and capable of KOing. Down aerial is able to meteor smash and possesses a strong landing hitbox, though it is dangerous to use off-stage due to being a stall-then-fall. Unlike in Brawl, she now has a grab aerial, which can be used for spacing, set-ups, or as a tether recovery.

Zero Suit Samus' special moves also possess considerable versatility. Paralyzer is quick, has decent range and paralyzes the opponent, granting it excellent follow-up potential. Plasma Whip has long range and, like her grab aerial, can be used for spacing or as a tether recovery. Boost Kick is decent for recovery, but thanks to it hitting on frame 4 and boasting impressive power, it is actually one of Zero Suit Samus' most viable KOing options, especially from out of shield. Lastly, Flip Jump functions like a third jump, but also grants intangibility at its start and allows her to move unpredictably. As such, it can enable her to avoid attacks or mix up her recovery, the latter of which is supplemented by its ability to automatically wall jump upon making contact with a wall. Like Boost Kick, it also boasts impressive offensive potential: its inputted kick is strong enough to KO easily and can meteor smash aerial opponents, whereas its footstool stomp is now capable of both burying grounded opponents and meteor smashing aerial ones.

Lastly, Zero Suit Samus possesses a few invaluable KO set-ups aside from Paralyzer. Down smash is one of the few smash attacks of its kind that only hits in one direction, but it is very quick and paralyzes an opponent like Paralyzer, allowing her to follow it up with a forward smash, back aerial, a grab, Boost Kick or Flip Jump, with the last KOing at very low percentages. In addition, down throw itself has guaranteed follow-ups at any percentage below 160%. Depending on the opponent's DI, it can combo into forward or up aerial, and sometimes back aerial and Boost Kick. This throw is also notorious for its ability to score very early KOs. Without proper DI, a series of up aerials leading into a Boost Kick can KO the majority of the cast at 50% while near the upper blast line. The latter's loop hits also have high base knockback and can KO if its last hit does not land due to SDI, even with perfect DI. Even with proper DI, this combo can also KO earlier if the opponent is near an edge. Due to its speed, neutral attack's first hit can also function as a surprisingly effective set-up into Boost Kick at medium to high percentages. Altogether, these traits make Zero Suit Samus' punishment potential one of the most potent in the game.

However, Zero Suit Samus has some noticeable weaknesses. She can be KO'd fairly early because of her status as a lightweight, but unlike the majority of her fellow lightweights, she is also burdened with a susceptibility to combos because of her tall frame, very quick falling speed, and high gravity. Aside from her pummel's speed and her down throw's excellent combo potential, the rest of Zero Suit Samus' grab game is poor. Her grabs' long ranges are offset by their overall lag: they are tied with Grapple Beam for the highest amount of start-up lag in the game, and their ending lag is the third highest in the game, surpassed only by Pac-Man's grabs and her Power Suit's Grapple Beam. Despite having respectable damage outputs, her forward, back and up throws have no guaranteed follow-ups; although back throw has some semblance of mix-up potential, its mix-ups are very situational and require hard reads.

The overwhelming majority of Zero Suit Samus' attacks have hitbox placements that are high above the ground, making it easy for short characters to avoid getting hit, especially while crouching. Despite Paralyzer's paralysis effect, its range is decent at best, and it does not stay out for very long. As a result, her approach against most defensive and zoning characters is limited to dodging their projectiles with her mobility, powershielding, and either coming in from above with an aerial, or fast falling and then immediately grabbing. All of these drawbacks also make Zero Suit Samus susceptible to momentum shifts, which in turn gives her a weak neutral game.

Zero Suit Samus' custom moves are among the most polarized in the game. New advantages are gained from using them, but each one has a noticeable disadvantage to go alongside them, to the point that some are inferior to her default specials because of their disadvantages outweighing their advantages. Blast Shot is faster and Electromagnetic Net lasts longer, but both sacrifice Paralyzer's excellent utility. Plasma Dash has better offensive potential and Whip Lash has excellent set-up potential, but they both have distinct flaws: the former is less reliable at edge trumping and lacks recovery potential, whereas the latter requires precises spacing to be effective. Impact Kick is much stronger and Lateral Kick travels farther, but each has noticeable flaws: Impact Kick is much slower, which removes its status as a follow-up entirely and often makes it unable to connecting with itself, whereas Lateral Kick KOs much later, which hinders Zero Suit Samus' KO potential. Lastly, Shooting Star Flip Kick and Low Flip have much less utility overall: the former is difficult to hit with, whereas the latter is less reliable for both recovering and KOing.

Overall, Zero Suit Samus' very potent air and punishment games allow her to reliably set-up combos and KOs like in Brawl, while her KO potential has improved thanks to her newfound KOing options. However, she must nevertheless be wary of characters with strong neutral games, due to the poor quality of her own neutral game. Despite retaining her initial flaws and receiving subsequent ones from game updates, Zero Suit Samus has nevertheless achieved very impressive tournament representation and results, as evident with players such as Nairo and Marss having won national and regional tournaments, respectively.

Changes from Brawl[edit]

Despite being a high-tier character in Brawl, Zero Suit Samus has been buffed in the transition to SSB4. Her KO potential has improved, most notably thanks to her new forward smash and her new up special, Boost Kick, the latter of which is especially potent from out of shield. Zero Suit Samus' combo game has also improved, thanks to her buffed down throw and the changes to hitstun canceling. Lastly, her spacing and recovery potential benefit from her new grab aerial.

However, Zero Suit Samus also received some nerfs. The most noticeable of these was to her Plasma Whip, which is much less reliable for KOing, while her aerial prowess has also slightly worsened. Lastly, her down smash's stun duration was decreased and thus slightly worsened its follow-up potential, while Paralyzer was slightly nerfed in update 1.0.4.

Aesthetics[edit]

  • Change Zero Suit Samus' design is now a combination of her appearance in Metroid: Other M, and her official artwork for Metroid Fusion and Metroid: Zero Mission. Her bangs, beauty mark, shorter height, larger bust/waist/hip measurements and Zero Suit are from Other M. Additionally, her lean musculature is from Fusion and Zero Mission, her facial structure and greenish blue eyes are from Zero Mission,[2] and her flaxen blonde hair is from Fusion. Lastly, the aesthetic used in SSB4 has resulted in Zero Suit Samus' hair being of a significantly higher visual quality than in Brawl.
  • Change The Paralyzer's design is now from Other M. Its plasma-based attacks also have updated visual effects and are lower pitched.
  • Change The Zero Suit's segments are now navy blue instead of blue, and it is now equipped with a matching set of Jet Boots and metal bracelets. The Paralyzer also features magenta accents within its interior. These changes are original to SSB4.
  • Change Zero Suit Samus is more expressive. She now winces with one eye closed when being hit or launched, winces with both eyes closed when screen KO'd, and frowns depressingly after tripping.
  • Change Zero Suit Samus now speaks during her taunts, instead of at the end of their animations.
  • Change Forward jump's animation has slightly changed. Zero Suit Samus now somersaults twice, instead of once.
  • Change Dash's animation has slightly changed. Zero Suit Samus now keeps her right arm steady, instead of swinging both arms.

Attributes[edit]

  • Change Zero Suit Samus is slightly shorter. While this would shorten her hurtbox, this is largely mitigated by her Jet Boots elevating her. The Jet Boots have also translated to Zero Suit Samus' moveset, be it through a tweaked animation or a completely new move. However, her metal bracelets are merely aesthetic.
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus walks faster (1.33 → 1.4).
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus dashes faster (1.93 → 2.1).
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus' air speed is faster (1.034 → 1.2).
  • Change Zero Suit Samus falls faster (1.43 → 1.7). This improves her vertical endurance, but makes her more susceptible to combos.
  • Change Zero Suit Samus' gravity is higher (0.0884 → 0.12). This improves her aerial mobility, but hinders her horizontal endurance.
  • Buff Sidestep has decreased ending lag (frame 26 → 25).
  • Nerf Jump is lower.
  • Nerf Due to the limitations of the Nintendo 3DS' processing power,[3] Zero Suit Samus is no longer connected to Samus via Final Smash or character selection screen input. As a result, she cannot use Power Suit Pieces.

Ground attacks[edit]

  • Buff Neutral attack's first and second hits deal 0.5% less damage (2% → 1.5%), although their fixed knockback was compensated (10 (both) → 23/45 (hit 1), 34/50 (hit 2)). These changes make its hits connect together better, and decreases the possibility of opponents powershielding the second and third hits in spite of its increased ending lag. Its last hit also has increased base knockback (45 → 60), improving its spacing potential.
  • Nerf Neutral attack has increased ending lag (frame 18 → 21 (hit 1), frame 21 → 26 (hit 2), frame 23 → 32 (hit 3)).
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus has a new dash attack, a jet-propelled knee strike. Compared to the previous dash attack, its clean hit deals 1% more damage (7% → 8%) and it has a longer duration (9 frames → 12).
  • Change Dash attack has different knockback (30 (base)/80 (scaling) → 100/40) compared to the previous dash attack. This makes it more effective for spacing and cross-ups, but incapable of being followed up with tilt attacks.
  • Nerf Dash attack has more start-up (frame 6 → 7) and ending lag (frame 32 → 52), less range and its sweetspot has a shorter duration (4 frames → 3) compared to the previous dash attack.
  • Change Due to consisting of a sweetspot and a sourspot instead of a consistent hitbox, forward tilt no longer deals consistent damage (6% (upward angled)/6% (non-angled)/9% (downward angled) → 8%/7%/8% (foot)/6.5%/6%/6.5% (leg)).
  • Buff Forward tilt has increased base knockback (8 (upward angled/non-angled)/12 (downward angled) → 30), improving its spacing potential.
  • Buff Up tilt's second hit deals 1% more damage (6% → 7%) and has increased knockback scaling (80 → 90), giving it KO potential at higher potential. Its first hit also has decreased knockback (55/80 (base)/70 (scaling) → 55/85/30 (aerial)/50 (grounded)), which makes its hits connect together better at high percentages.
  • Nerf Up tilt's second hit has increased start-up lag (frame 7 → 9).
  • Change Up tilt has increased hitlag (1× → 1.2×). This makes it safer on shield, but easier to DI.
  • Buff Down tilt has received an additional sweetspot that deals 8%. It also has increased knockback scaling (70 → 85).
  • Nerf Down tilt has increased start-up (frame 5 → 8) and ending lag (frame 25 → 36), significantly hindering its combo potential.
  • Buff Down tilt's animation has slightly changed. Zero Suit Samus now moves forward when performing the legsweep. This new animation increases its range.
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus has a new forward smash, a mid-level side kick followed by a spinning side kick at a slightly higher angle. Compared to the previous forward smash, it has faster start-up (frame 21 → 13) and deals more damage because of it consisting of two hits instead of one (10% (front)/6% (back) → 5% (hit 1)/11% (hit 2)), and its second hit has different knockback (30/35 (base)/100 (scaling) → 28/106/109). These changes make it significantly more effective at KOing.
  • Nerf Forward smash has less reach compared to the previous forward smash. Unlike the previous forward smash, it also cannot hit opponents standing directly behind Zero Suit Samus.
  • Change Forward smash has a normal and flame effect, whereas the previous forward smash has an electric effect.
  • Change Up smash's loop hits deal 0.2% less damage (1% → 0.8%), but it has received an additional loop hitbox. This results in its overall damage output remaining unchanged.
  • Buff Up smash's last hit has increased knockback scaling (133 → 145), improving its KO potential. It also has larger hitboxes (6u (hit 1)/5u (hits 2-6)/5u, 6.5u, 8u (hit 7) → 6u/5.2u, 5.6u, 6.5u/6u, 7.5u, 9.6u).
  • Nerf Up smash has slightly increased ending lag (frame 47 → 49).
  • Buff The weakening of SDI makes up smash significantly more difficult to escape from.
  • Nerf Down smash deals less damage (11% → 8% (near)/6% (far)), although its near hit's knockback was significantly compensated (40 (base)/50 (growth) → 50/90). It also now consists of two hitboxes that are smaller than its previous hitbox (9u → 4u/7u).
  • Nerf Down smash has increased ending lag (frame 36 → 42).
  • Change Down smash's paralysis effect has a shorter duration. This makes it more difficult for opponents to DI correctly, but slightly hinders its set-up potential.

Aerial attacks[edit]

  • Change Neutral aerial deals less damage (10% → 8%), although its knockback was compensated (40 (base)/80 (scaling) → 38/96). These changes improve its combo potential, but hinder its spacing potential.
  • Change Neutral aerial is now properly affected by stale-move negation.
  • Buff Forward aerial's first hit deals 1% less damage (6% → 5%), and its knockback was lowered overall (35 (base)/70 (scaling) → 50/50). Forward aerial also has larger hitboxes (5.5u/4.8u/5u → 6.4u/5.5u). Altogether, these changes make its hits connect together much better.
  • Buff Forward aerial has decreased ending lag (frame 49 → 47).
  • Nerf Due to having a consistent hitbox instead of a clean hitbox and a late hitbox, forward aerial's second hit now deals consistent damage (10%/11% (clean)/7% (late) → 7%). Its knockback scaling was also slightly compensated (105 → 116).
  • Nerf Forward aerial has a shorter duration (4 frames (hit 1)/5 frames (hit 2) → 2 (both)).
  • Nerf Back aerial deals less damage (13% (foot)/12% (leg) → 12/10%), although its knockback was mostly compensated (33 (base)/100 (scaling) → 42/98), KO'ing 4%-5% later.
  • Nerf Back aerial has increased ending lag (frame 38 → 40), landing lag (9 frames → 11) and a shorter duration (3 frames → 2).
  • Change Up aerial deals less damage (10% (clean)/7% (late) → 6.5%), although its knockback was somewhat compensated (40 (base)/100 (scaling) → 30/125). These changes improve its juggling and combo potential, but hinder its KO potential.
  • Nerf Up aerial has increased start-up lag (frame 4 → 6).
  • Buff Up aerial has a longer duration (5 frames → 7) and auto-cancels earlier (frame 34> → 25>).
  • Change Up aerial now has a normal effect, instead of a slash effect.
  • Buff Down aerial deals more damage (5% (aerial)/4% (grounded)/5% (landing) → 6%/5%/5.5%). Additionally, its landing hitbox has increased knockback scaling (90 → 110). Lastly, it has larger hitboxes (6u/5u → 6.3u/5.2u) and decreased landing lag (40 frames → 30).
  • Change Down aerial's aerial hit's angle has been altered (275° → 278°).
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus now has a grab aerial.

Throws/other attacks[edit]

  • Buff All grabs have decreased ending lag (frame 85 (all) → 69 (standing)/72 (dash)/80 (pivot)).
  • Nerf All grabs have shorter durations (13 frames → 9). Pivot grab also has increased start-up lag (frame 16 → 17).
  • Nerf Grab has decreased range.
  • Nerf The removal of chain grabbing significantly hinders forward throw's damage racking potential.
  • Buff Back throw deals 2% more damage (6% → 8%), although its knockback was somewhat compensated (70 (base)/60 (scaling) → 72/45). These changes grant it set-up potential.
  • Buff Down throw deals 2% less damage (7% → 5%), although its knockback was somewhat compensated (100 (base)/25 (scaling) → 90/60). Down throw also transitions faster. When coupled with the changes to hitstun canceling, these changes improve its combo potential at low to high percentages.

Special moves[edit]

  • Change Fully charged Paralyzer's angle has been altered (361° (both) → 65° (aerial)/315° (grounded)).
  • Nerf Plasma Whip deals less damage (3% (whip)/16% (tip) → 2% (whip near)/1.2% (whip far)/7.5% (tip)), although its tip's knockback was somewhat compensated (60 (base)/75 (scaling) → 45/105).
  • Buff Plasma Whip has decreased start-up lag (frame 24 → 22).
  • Buff The weakening of SDI makes Plasma Whip significantly more difficult to escape from.
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus has a new up special, Boost Kick. It is a jet-propelled, diagonal split-legged flying kick, followed by a spinning hook kick. Compared to Plasma Wire, Boost Kick deals overall more damage (4%-6% → 5% (hit 1)/1.3% (hits 2-7)/4% (hit 8)) and has different knockback (60 (base)/40 (scaling) → 50/209), making it significantly more effective at KOing. Like Plasma Wire, it has mindgame potential. Unlike Plasma Wire, it can punish rolls. It also grants more horizontal distance than Plasma Wire.
  • Nerf Compared to Plasma Wire, Boost Kick covers less vertical distance. Unlike Plasma Wire, it cannot meteor smash opponents. It also puts her into a helpless state.
  • Buff Flip Jump's kick deals more damage (12% (clean)/9% (late) → 14%), although its base knockback was compensated (60 (both) → 30 (aerial)/45 (grounded)). This significantly improves its KO potential in spite of its lower base knockback. Its footstool stomp has also received a hitbox that deals 8% and buries grounded opponents and meteor smashes aerial ones, significantly improving its reliability.
  • Nerf Flip Jump has increased ending lag. The sweetspot is also significantly harder to land.
  • Change Flip Jump now requires pressing the jump button upon contact with a wall in order to wall jump, instead of doing so automatically.
  • Change Flip Jump's visual effects have changed. Zero Suit Samus now produces afterimages during its arc.
  • Buff The removal of the grab release glitch allows Zero Suit Samus to re-use Flip Jump if she has been grabbed in midair.
  • Buff Zero Suit Samus has a new Final Smash, Gunship. She boards her Gunship and fires energy blasts from its cannons toward the stage, similarly to Grenade Launcher. Compared to Power Suit Samus, it has a significantly longer duration, which makes it significantly more effective at damage racking in spite of its overall lower damage output (25% (spin)/10% (discharge) → 0.8% (hits 1-9)/10% (hit 10)). Unlike Power Suit Samus, it can be used for stage control.

Update history[edit]

Zero Suit Samus has been nerfed via game updates. Update 1.0.4 standardized her air dodge's animation in order for it to match the rest of the cast's, which increased its landing lag, while up smash and Paralyzer had their start-up and ending lag increased, respectively. Update 1.1.4 decreased Boost Kick's knockback scaling, which results in it now KOing slightly later. Her most substantial nerfs came about in update 1.1.5, which affected her damage racking potential by decreasing the damage outputs of her neutral aerial, up aerial and down throw, while all of her grabs had their active frames decreased.

Despite these direct nerfs, Zero Suit Samus also received indirect buffs because of the changes to shield mechanics brought about by updates 1.1.0 and 1.1.1. These changes make her most damaging attacks and Paralyzer's electric attacks safer on shield. Overall, Zero Suit Samus' viability has remained largely intact in spite of her nerfs.

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS 1.0.4

  • Nerf Air dodge's landing lag standardized: 15 → 22.
  • Nerf Up smash has increased start-up: 9 frames → 11
  • Buff Up smash first hitbox length: 1 frame → 2
  • Change Up smash timing: hits on 8, 11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 28-29 → hits on 10-11, 14, 17, 20, 23, 26, 28-29
  • Nerf Paralyzer has slightly increased ending lag.
  • Change Paralyzer (default), when fully charged, now has different effect on grounded versus aerial opponents.
    • Change Grounded opponent angle: 60 → 315

Super Smash Bros. 4 1.1.4

  • Change Weight slightly decreased: 81 → 80.
  • Change Boost Kick has slightly lower launch angle (50° → 48°). While it allows opponents to DI downward more effectively to avoid upper blast line early KOs from the center of the stage combined with slightly less knockback, this makes it easy for opponents to be KOed offstage and slightly more difficult to survive by DIing upward at high percent.
  • Nerf Boost Kick's knockback growth decreased (220 → 209), making it slightly weaker, now KOing 5% later from the center stage and 2% later near the ledge.

Super Smash Bros. 4 1.1.5

  • Nerf Neutral aerial deals less damage: 10% → 8%, though with its knockback compensated (40 base/80 scaling → 38/96). Additionally, some of its hitboxes have less range (hitbox 1 front: 6u → 5.7u, hitbox 1 back: 6u → 5.6u).
  • Change Neutral aerial has modified stretch positioning (hitbox 1 front X-axis: 11 → 10, hitbox 2 front X/Y-axis: 20/7.5 → 19/7, hitbox 1 back X/Y-axis: 9/14.6 → 6.6/13.8, hitbox 2 back X/Y-axis: 16/17 → 15/16.5). This gives it less horizontal range, but it can now hit small characters on the ground.
  • Nerf Up aerial deals less damage: 8% → 6.5%, though with its knockback scaling compensated (110 → 125).
  • Nerf The last active frames for all of her grabs are 4 frames shorter without its ending lag compensated: frame 29 → 25. This makes it more difficult to grab opponents out of their rolls or sidesteps with all of her grabs.
  • Buff Back throw's second hit deals more damage (4% hit 2/8% total → 6%/8% total). It also has increased knockback (25 base/70 scaling → 45/72).
  • Nerf Down throw's second hit deals less damage (5%/7% total → 3%/5% total), though its knockback was also slightly increased (100 base/25 scaling → 90/60), making it somewhat more difficult to combo opponents at high percents.
  • Buff Plasma Whip has been improved: the first hit has more base knockback (80 → 100), the loops hits deal slightly more damage (.8% → 1.2%), the final hit deals more damage (6% → 7.5%), and various adjustments have been made to allow all of its hits to connect better. It also has less ending lag (27 → 24 frames).

Moveset[edit]

  Name Damage Description
Neutral attack   1.5% A knifehand strike, followed by a pistol-whip, followed by a 12-6 elbow. Despite its unimpressive damage output, it hits on frame 1, which ties it with Little Mac's neutral attack for the lowest amount of start-up lag of any neutral attack in the game. This gives it a useful amount of utility, as it can interrupt attacks, act as an out of shield option, or use its first hit to jab cancel into Boost Kick, which is a viable KO combo even at high percentages.
1.5%
3%
Forward tilt   8% (leg), 6.5% (body) A roundhouse kick. It is useful for spacing and can be angled, with its downward angle being capable of trip opponents at low percentages.
7% (leg), 6% (body)
8% (leg), 6.5% (body)
Up tilt   5% (hit 1), 7% (hit 2) A butterfly kick-styled scissor kick performed from a variation of the 2000, a breakdancing move. It hits on frame 3, which is the lowest amount of start-up lag out of Zero Suit Samus' tilt attacks. It is also one of only two moves that hits in front of and behind her, with the other being neutral aerial. Its first hit grants intangibility to Zero Suit Samus' legs, while both hits have anti-rebounding priority. It is primarily used to set up juggles, but its second hit's high knockback scaling enables it to function as a situational KOing option. Its second hit KOs aerial middleweights at 161% from anywhere on Final Destination in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS, and at 154% in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U. However, it has high ending lag and cannot hit grounded short characters, such as Kirby.
Down tilt   8% (leg), 6% (foot) A legsweep. It slightly moves Zero Suit Samus forward and can be used for edge-guarding. When timed precisely, it can even allow her to dodge projectiles and other attacks. Unlike in Brawl, however, it has almost nonexistent combo potential because of its high ending lag. As a result, it is Zero Suit Samus' least effective tilt attack.
Dash attack   8% (clean), 5% (late) Activates her Jet Boots to perform a jet-propelled knee strike. It can lead into a successful cross-up against opponents who try to grab her after powershielding. Although it is fast, it does not have much range and has high ending lag.
Forward smash   5% (hit 1), 11% (hit 2) A mid-level side kick, followed by a spinning side kick at a slightly higher angle. Due to it activating her Jet Boots, the second hit has a visible sweetspot in the form of a small, fiery blast at the tip of her foot. Unlike typical sweetspots, it has the same damage output as the sourspot and only very slightly higher knockback scaling, which makes either one reliable for KOing. As a result, it is her strongest smash attack and one of her most reliable KOing options. Its second hit KOs middleweights at 122% while near the edge of Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 110% in the Wii U version.
Up smash   4% (hit 1), 0.8% (hits 2-6), 3% (hit 7) Spins in place while twirling a whip of plasma overhead. It hits multiple times, has very minimal start-up lag, very long vertical range, and decent horizontal range near the tip of the whip. Altogether, these traits make it a useful anti-air attack. It can also act as a follow-up from down throw at low percentages. Although its last hit has very high knockback scaling, this is offset by said hit's very low damage output. As a result, its last hit does not KO aerial middleweights until 165% from anywhere on Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 154% in the Wii U version.
Down smash   8% (near), 6% (far) Aims her Paralyzer downward in front of herself and fires a paralyzing energy blast at the ground. When spaced correctly, it is safe on shield. It is a useful set-up option thanks to it briefly paralyzing the opponent, with notable follow-ups including forward smash, a grab, or Boost Kick. With precise timing off-stage, it can also be used as a set-up into Flip Jump in order to meteor smash an opponent. At 60%-150%, two consecutive uncharged down smashes can lead into forward aerial, reverse aerial rushed back aerial, up aerial, Flip Jump, and Boost Kick. However, these particular follow-ups require precise timing and for Zero Suit Samus to be very close to the opponent. It also lacks KO potential and, like Mewtwo and Ryu's down smashes, only hits on one side. Due to being a projectile, the blast can be absorbed, but not reflected because of it being fired downward.
Neutral aerial   8% (both hits) Spins around to swing a whip of plasma from her Paralyzer laterally around herself. It has long range, low landing lag and launches at 55°, which allow it to function as a useful set-up option when SHFF'd, particularly into other aerials. However, it can be easily be punished against shielding opponents if it is not spaced properly.
Forward aerial   5% (hit 1), 7% (hit 2) A hook kick followed by a roundhouse kick. Its first hit can function as a set-up when SHFF'd, thanks to it launching the opponent into their reeling animation. In comparison, its second hit is slightly faster and has very high knockbackk scaling. Its second hit can also be used independently of its first hit, but requires precise timing to do so. It is a very useful follow-up from down throw if the opponent's DI has been read properly. Its second hit KOs middleweights at 115% while near the left/right blast line of Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 95% in the Wii U version. However, it is difficult to land both hits without taking advantage of upward and forward momentum from a jump.
Back aerial   12% (foot), 10% (leg) A spinning hook kick. It hits on frame 8 and has long range, high knockback scaling and a sweetspot located at her foot. Altogether, these traits make it one of Zero Suit Samus' most viable KOing options. Its sweetspot KOs middleweights at 112% while near the edge of Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 101% in the Wii U version. Although its sourspot KOs later because of its slightly lower damage output, it is still reliable for KOing regardless.
Up aerial   6.5% A bicycle kick. Thanks to its minimal start-up and ending lag, very low base knockback and very high knockback scaling, it boasts excellent juggling potential. It can combo into itself at low percentages and, with sufficient rage, it can combo into Boost Kick after a second one has been landed, leading to a KO. By extension, its very knockback scaling also grants it KO potential in spite of its low damage output. It KOs middleweights at 144% while near the upper blast line of Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 136% in the Wii U version. However, its very low base knockback makes it unsafe on hit against characters that have a fast aerial attack to counter with.
Down aerial   6% (aerial), 5% (grounded), 5.5% (landing) A diagonal flying kick, similar to Sonic and Sheik's down aerials. It is a meteor smash if her foot hits the opponent. However, it has the highest start-up lag out of her aerials. It is also a stall-then-fall, which makes it extremely risky to use off-stage. Despite this, its extremely fast descent speed can enable it to counter a juggle if there is sufficient distance between Zero Suit Samus and the opponent.
Grab aerial Plasma Whip 3% (early), 6% (clean) Lunges in order to unleash a whip of plasma forward. It is the longest grab aerial in the game, making it excellent for spacing, recovering, edge-guarding and follow-ups. However, it has high ending lag in the air, and only the tip of the whip has a hitbox.
Grab Plasma Whip Performs a kneeling lunge to unfurl a whip of plasma. The tip has more vertical range, which makes it useful even against small characters, who can otherwise crouch under the rest of the whip. Thanks to its duration, it can even grab opponents out of their rolls and sidesteps when timed precisely. Although Zero Suit Samus' grabs have long horizontal ranges, they are tied with Grapple Beam for having the highest amount of start-up lag in the game, and have the third highest amount of ending lag in the game.
Pummel   2% A knee strike. A fairly fast pummel.
Forward throw   2% (hit 1), 7% (throw) A point-blank energy blast. At medium percentages and depending on the opponent's DI and reaction, it can act as a set-up into Flip Jump, which can lead into an early KO if its meteor smash hitbox connects. Outside of this, its only other purpose is to deal damage.
Back throw   2% (hit 1), 6% (throw) A mid-level roundhouse kick. It is an infamous set-up for Flip Jump while near the edge because of Flip Jump's meteor smash hitbox. It can also be used as a set-up into back aerial until around 90%-110% as a DI mix-up against opponents attempting to DI away. However, these follow-ups are not guaranteed and require hard reads.
Up throw   2% (hit 1), 8% (throw) A bicycle kick. It is her most damaging throw, but lacks KO potential because of its below average knockback scaling. Although its knockback values and launching angle are nearly identical to down throw's, it has almost nonexistent combo potential because of its fairly high ending lag.
Down throw   2% (hit 1), 3% (throw) Pins the opponent to the ground and then performs an axe kick. It is one of her best combo starters, with follow-ups including a dashing up smash, forward, back (if the opponent's DI is read properly) and up aerials, and Boost Kick, with the latter combo KOing at high percentages. At high percentages and depending on rage, it can also set up a semi-guaranteed KO combo with up aerial against opponents attempting to jump out or air dodge, or Boost Kick against opponents attempting to air dodge.
Floor attack (front)   7% A modified butterfly kick performed from the windmill, a breakdancing move.
Floor attack (back)   7% A modified butterfly kick performed from the windmill.
Floor attack (trip)   5% Spins around to perform a low-level roundhouse kick.
Edge attack   7% Performs a low-angle, one-legged dropkick while climbing up.
Neutral special Default Paralyzer 4% (uncharged), 6% (charged) Assumes a kneeling position to fire a paralyzing energy blast. It can be charged, which increases its damage output the duration of its paralysis, but at the cost of lowered speed.
Custom 1 Blast Shot 2% (uncharged), 3.5% (charged) The energy blast is faster and has more range, but deals less damage and does not inflict paralysis.
Custom 2 Electromagnetic Net 0.8% (uncharged most), 1% (uncharged end), 1% (charged most), 2% (charged end) The energy blast explodes in an ever-increasing range. However, it has minimal range prior to exploding.
Side special Default Plasma Whip 2% (whip near hits 1-4), 1.2% (whip far hits 1-4), 7.5% (tip) Performs a kneeling lunge to unleash a whip of plasma forward in a swirling motion. The whip hits repeatedly, while its sweetspot is located at the whip's tip. It is useful for spacing and can function as a tether recovery like her grab aerial.
Custom 1 Plasma Dash 2% (hit 1), 1% (hits 2-5), 4% (hit 6) A dashing pistol-whip, similar to Bayonetta's dash attack. Due to not emitting a whip of plasma, it cannot be used as a tether recovery.
Custom 2 Whip Lash — (whip), 6% (tip) The whip's tip launches the opponent toward Zero Suit Samus instead of away, similarly to Plasma Wire. This grants it set-up potential even up to high percentages. However, only the whip's tip deals damage.
Up special Default Boost Kick 5% (hit 1), 1.3% (hits 2-7), 4% (hit 8) Activates her Jet Boots to perform a jet-propelled diagonal split-legged flying kick, followed by a spinning hook kick. It is one of Zero Suit Samus' best KOing options, especially from out of shield, thanks to it hitting multiple times and its last hits extremely high knockback scaling. Its last hit KO aerial middleweights at 111% while near the edge of Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 103% in the Wii U version. It can also be angled forward or backward, which allows it to catch an opponent's air dodge, rolls and edge get-up reactions.
Custom 1 Impact Kick 6% (hit 1), 14% (hit 2) The hits deal more damage and have higher knockback. However, the first kick does not consist of loop hits, which decreases its reliability of connecting with the second kick.
Custom 2 Lateral Kick 5% (hit 1), 1.3% (hits 2-6), 5% (hit 7) The last hit deals slightly more damage, is a semi-spike and grants significantly more horizontal distance. However, the first hit covers much less vertical distance.
Down special Default Flip Jump 8% (stomp), 14% (kick) A 720° Ce Kong Fan, a jumping technique used in contemporary Wushu. It functions as a third jump and grants intangibility on frames 3-12. It can deal damage in two ways: upon contact at the end of the jump, or by pressing either the attack button or special button during the jump. Upon contact, Zero Suit Samus performs a footstool stomp, which buries grounded opponents and meteor smashes aerial opponents. Zero Suit Samus will bounce off of teammates with this move, even if Team Attack is off. Pressing the attack or special buttons makes her perform a diagonal flying kick, which is very powerful. The flying kick also has a sweetspot at her foot that can meteor smash aerial opponents, but has slightly less knockback against aerial opponents. Flip Jump's kick KOs middleweights at 98% while near the edge of Final Destination in the 3DS version, and at 88% in the Wii U version. However, the move has high ending lag overall.
Custom 1 Shooting Star Flip Kick 8% (stomp), 17% (clean kick), 14% (late kick) The flying kick's sweetspot deals more damage and it functions similarly to down aerial, albeit propelling Zero Suit Samus at a more horizontal angle. However, the jump covers less horizontal distance.
Custom 2 Low Kick 4% (stomp), 8% (clean kick), 6% (late kick) The jump grants much more horizontal distance and jumping while flipping helps Zero Suit Samus land faster. However, the jump covers much less vertical distance and grants no intangibility, while the stomp and kick both deal less damage.
Final Smash Gunship 0.8% (hits 1-9), 10% (hit 10) Summons her Gunship from the background, and jumps into it as it flies off-screen. While Zero Suit Samus is piloting it, crosshairs appear on-screen, allowing her to fire a maximum of five energy blasts from her Gunship's cannons at any spot she chooses. When 15 seconds have passed, or when she has fired five shots, Zero Suit Samus will eject from her Gunship and descend from the sky.

On-screen appearance[edit]

  • Jumps out of her Gunship and uses her Jet Boots to briefly hover before landing.
ZeroSuitSamusOnScreenAppearanceSSB4.gif

Taunts[edit]

  • Up taunt: Tosses her Paralyzer into the air, spins once, and catches it behind herself while saying "Is that all?"
  • Side taunt: Swings a whip of plasma in a circular motion while saying "Try me."
  • Down taunt: Holds her Paralyzer near her waist, and then performs a pirouette while twirling a whip of plasma around herself and saying "You're mine!"
Up taunt Side taunt Down taunt
ZSSUpTauntSSB4.jpg ZSSSideTauntSSB4.jpg ZSSDownTauntSSB4.jpg

Idle poses[edit]

  • Configures her Paralyzer.
  • Stands up straight and looks around, holding her Paralyzer up to her face.
ZeroSuitSamusIdlePose2WiiU.jpg ZeroSuitSamusIdlePose1WiiU.jpg

Crowd cheer[edit]

English Japanese
Cheer
Zero Suit Samus Cheer NTSC SSB4.ogg
Zero Suit Samus Cheer JP SSB4.ogg
Description Ze-ro Suit! Ze-ro Suit! Samus!
Pitch Group chant Group chant

Victory poses[edit]

A flourished remix based on the Item Obtainment Jingle, which plays when Samus Aran obtains an upgrade to her Power Suit, or when a Metroid game is resumed from a Save Station.
  • Uses Flip Jump and then performs a jet-propelled somersault while grunting.
  • Swings a whip of plasma from her Paralyzer before saying "Be still."
  • Performs a stretch kick and then swings her leg into position to perform a modified passé while grunting.
ZeroSuitSamusPose1WiiU.gif ZeroSuitSamusPose2WiiU.gif ZeroSuitSamusPose3WiiU.gif

In competitive play[edit]

Official Custom Moveset Project[edit]

Character Custom sets available
ZeroSuitSamusHeadSSB4-U.png Zero Suit Samus 1311 1312 1112 2311 2111
2312 2112 1211 1332 1132


Notable players[edit]

Active[edit]

Inactive[edit]

  • USA Ned - The best Zero Suit Samus player in the Midwest before switching to Cloud.

Tier placement and history[edit]

Zero Suit Samus has been widely been viewed as a top-tier character ever since SSB4 was released. She became infamous for her highly rewarding grab combos that could lead into early KOs, varied methods of setting up KOs with her back and down throws, down smash, and Paralyzer, her ability to escape pressure with her aerial mobility and down special, and, as of update 1.1.1, the incredible safety of her electric attacks like her neutral aerial. However, she also has a few weaknesses, such as her laggy grab and lackluster ground game. Although players would often point out both her weaknesses and her representation only being above average for a perceived top-tier character, Zero Suit Samus' weaknesses were also perceived as negligible. Additionally, her top-tier status was supplemented by the efforts of dedicated professionals, most notably Marss, Nairo, Nick Riddle, Remzi and V115, who dominated their respective regions with her and whose tournament results had been sufficient enough to position her as the second best character in the game in the eyes of most players.

Nairo's efforts in particular have demonstrated the former points: he is one of the best SSB4 players in the world, consistently achieves top 8 placings at major tournaments (most notably winning MLG World Finals 2015) and became the first person to eliminate ZeRo, the undisputed best player in the world at the time, from a tournament. Other notable placings included Nick Riddle placing 2nd at Paragon Orlando 2015 and 7th at CEO 2015, and Marss placing 7th at GENESIS 3. Thanks to these very strong tournament results, Zero Suit Samus was ranked 2nd on the first tier list.

However, Zero Suit Samus received nerfs from game updates, with update 1.1.5 providing her most significant ones by exacerbating her grab game's lag issues, and somewhat toning down her immense strengths. These nerfs ultimately affected her results, with some of her main players eventually being outperformed by other characters, such as Cloud, which in turn saw her playerbase slightly shrink. Zero Suit Samus' downturn was reflected in her subsequent tier placements, as she lost her top 3 status by being ranked 8th on the second tier list, and then lost her top 10 status by being ranked 11th on the third and current tier list.

However as of recently, Zero Suit Samus has had a huge spike in results thanks to Marss and Nairo placing top 2 at many major tournaments and most notably Nairo's win at Super Smash Con 2017 while using Zero Suit Samus a majority of the tournament. Due to these impressive results and her ladder combos still being very frightening. Her tier spot has been debated once again as many smashers claim that she should be ranked much higher due to her most recent results and these results being more impressive that characters ranked above her such as Sheik, Mario, Rosalina, Mewtwo, and Marth.

Trophies[edit]

Zero Suit Samus
ntsc Samus is far from helpless when her Power Suit is deactivated. Sure, she loses a lot of the moves and weapons she had access to before, but her Jet Boots pick up the slack! She also has the Paralyzer, a versatile weapon that can shock her rivals or change into a Plasma Whip to grab edges and enemies.
pal Without her Power Suit, Samus Aran may not have her usual strength, specials moves or over-powered arm cannon, but her Jet Boots definitely kick things up a notch in their own way. The Paralyzer, her gun, does just what you'd expect it to, but it can also turn into a whip for attacking and grabbing onto edges while falling.
GB Advance: Metroid: Zero Mission (02/2004)
Wii: Metroid: Other M (08/2010)
Zero Suit Samus (Alt.)
ntsc Zero Suit Samus's up special Boost Kick involves a series of fast kicks that end with a swift, sideways-launching one. A perfectly executed attack will hit eight times! Her down special Flip Jump can bury a grounded fighter in the dirt. She can kick midflip by pressing the special button.
pal Zero Suit Samus's Boost Kick up special finishes with a swift sideways kick. If you start the move close to an opponent, you can hit them up to eight times and launch them sideways! Her main down special, Flip Jump, buries opponents if you land on them at the end of it. Alternatively, press the button again mid-flip for a drop kick.
GB Advance: Metroid: Zero Mission (02/2004)
Wii: Metroid: Other M (08/2010)
Gunship (Zero Suit Samus)
ntsc Samus's Gunship is her way of travelling through space and her base of operations when exploring hostile planets. In Zero Suit Samus's Final Smash, she can use her Gunship to fire powerful beams at other fighters, hitting them multiple times, even if they're hiding off-screen! At least they can be thankful it doesn't go on forever.
pal Samus's spaceship carries her through space and serves as her base of operations during her missions. Zero Suit Samus will call down and board her Gunship with her Final Smash. Once she's in the pilot's seat, she has a short time to unleash up to five powerful shots from the ship's weapons. Foes aren't safe even hiding off-screen!

In Event Matches[edit]

Solo Events[edit]

Co-op Events[edit]

Alternate costumes[edit]

Zero Suit Samus Palette (SSB4).png
ZeroSuitSamusHeadSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadBlueSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadRedSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadBlackSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadGreenSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadWhiteSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadShortsOrangeSSB4-U.png ZeroSuitSamusHeadShortsBlueSSB4-U.png

Gallery[edit]

Trivia[edit]

  • Zero Suit Samus is the only character who has more than one method of accessing her tether recovery.
  • Although Zelda and Sheik have alternate costumes that correspond to their costumes' respective orders, Samus and Zero Suit Samus do not follow this trend. Zero Suit Samus lacks a purple alternate costume to match Samus' Gravity Suit, while her last two alternate costumes consist of her civilian clothes instead of variations of the Zero Suit.


  1. Super Smash Bros. Direct 4.8.2014
  2. Metroid: Zero Mission's Development Room Gallery 2
  3. "I Answer Some Questions" Sakurai Famitsu column vol. 461-464, on Ice Climbers, clones, and Smash Run
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