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Super Smash Bros./Link
Link is known in high level competitive play as a very defensive character, relying on bombs and boomerangs to prevent gimps and using back aerial, up tilt, and up aerial for combos while using down aerial, forward smash, down smash, and projectiles for edgeguarding. Link's recovery is that poor that he cannot ever be close to a ledge. Link's poor recovery and the fact that he is very easily comboed make it difficult for him to win. Link has poor match-ups due to this and is usually considered the worst character to use on Dreamland. For this he is second to last, 11th, on the tier list.
Normal Move Analysis
- Neutral attack- Sword Swipe, 5%, then another swipe, 3%, and a last stab for 4% before a series of quick sword stabs, 1% each. This move comes out fast and has decent range right in front on Link.
- Forward Tilt: Sword Chop. Link brings his sword up and slashes down. Somewhat slow but above average damage and knockback for a forward tilt. 18%
- Up Tilt: Overhead Sword Swipe. Link quickly swings his sword in a small arch above him. Can be chained together and good for leading into combos, usually forward tilt or neutral aerial. There is the slighted arch in the foe's upward trajectory; When facing right, there's a slight right angle, and vice versa. This move can usually KO a foe reliably above very high damages such as 200%. 10% damage.
- Down Tilt: Ground Swipe. He slashes his sword sluggishly below him. Usually knocks foes upwards. At lower percentages, this can be followed by a Forward Smash, a Forward Tilt, or even a grab attack. At higher damages, in most cases, it knocks the foe far enough such that there's no way to quickly follow it up. 12%
- Dash attack: Running Sword Swipe. He sticks his sword straight out mid-dash and stops. Good range and speed, and can KO usually around 150%. Great for combo finishers. There is, however, some cooldown lag. 16%
- Side Smash: Super Sword Slice. He quickly twirls his sword twice and then slashes forward in a similar fashion to his Forward Tilt, but has a bigger blue effect if it hits. Good finisher. 9-20%
- Up Smash: Triple Vertical Sword Slice, 22% total. Good move for damage racking, as long as the foe doesn't DI out of it. Best suited for heavier characters. This move is somewhat weak for KO-ing, however, at lower percentages it can lead into itself, and aerial follow up, or Up B. In most other cases, though, a up aerial or simply some other juggling plan (usually a Bomb readied before the move) is recommended or used. The range of the move itself isn't that far, it resembles a bunch of Link's up tilts in rapid succession, though with less of an arch.
- Down Smash: Grass Cutter, 16% damage. Link swiftly slashes in front of him and then back. The move is a good close up defensive move but also has a good KO-ing property. This move is one of Link's few moves that come out near-instantaneously, and the ending lag is also rather low. Assuming the Link player is facing right, when the foe is hit on either side while being closest to Link, they will be sent upwards at a slightly angled trajectory. When hit at the end of Link's blade, it'll knock the foe in a 45° angle in the direction depending on what side they were hit on.
- Ledge attack: Flips over and slashes outwards. Decent range. 4% damage.
- 100% ledge attack: Slowly picks himself up and stabs at a slight upward angle. 4% damage.
- Floor attack: Slashes on both sides and gets up. 6% damage.
- Neutral aerial: Sex Kick. Link's neutral aerial is best used as a defensive move, seeing how even when it first comes out, there is not much KO power unless used in the air for an edgeguard. 6-10% when it first comes out.
- Forward aerial: Spin Sword, 9-20%. Link slashes once in front of him, swirls in a complete circle and sticks out his sword again (best viewed on 1/4 speed in training). The first hit does 20% damage with a good amount of knockback, whereas the second doing 60% of that amount, but still with strength. It is not possible that the two hits will combine into each other.
- Up aerial: Upwards Thrust, 16%. Decent KO power, can also juggle. The hitbox of this move is Link's blade, which is directly aimed up.
- Back aerial: Double kick. They both combine into each other for a good amount of knockback, though the second hit can be DI'd out of. In addition, it is risky going for a Link player to use this move near a ledge due to the length of this move, as Link's recovery may not always be good enough to make it back to the stage. 20% total damage.
- Down aerial: Downward Sword. Link aims his sword directly below him for a long duration. This does 16% and has great knockback. It is possible to hit the same enemy twice to have this move inflict 32% altogether. This move can be used to KO recovering foes by jumping directly at them, but this is only safe if the bounce of the connected hit allows Link to return to the stage. It should be noted that this move's downwards descent can be hastened by fast falling, although doing so is not a good idea near ledge, as this move will most likely doom Link players who use this move off a ledge. Also has substantial landing lag when the player lands on the ground whilst using the move if not L-cancelled.
Grabs & Throws
- Link, along with Samus, has an "extended grab"- meaning they use a grappler in order to increase their grab length, leading to various combos due to the large grab range.
- Forward Throw: Kick. Link violently kicks his foe forward with good power. Often throws the foe far enough to set up a quick boomerang or bomb-based edgeguard, or simply one of Link's aerials. 14%
- Back Throw: Kick back, 16% damage. Link takes the foe and kicks them directly behind him. Somewhat better KOing power than his forward throw.
Special Move Analysis
One can tap the control stick while doing this move to increase its range, and tilt the stick up or down to aim it towards those directions. If the player dodges the Boomerang as it comes back to them, it will continue going, arcing in the direction they dodged in. Link can only have one Boomerang on screen at any time; trying the attack again while a boomerang is out only results in Link doing his boomerang throwing animation without actually throwing anything.
Spin Attack: Link's Spin Attack has nearly identical knockback and damage whether used on the ground and in the air, with extremely similar animation (the size of the circle made by the attack while in the air is smaller). Both versions deal substantial knockback, making them good combo finishers. As a recovery move, though, it is lacking in both horizontal and vertical range; while, as an attack, it has a strictly horizontal hitbox, leaving Link vulnerable from above and below.
Link's bomb, a character-specific item, can be thrown at other opponents, where it will explode on impact. The character hit by the bomb will take about 6% damage. If the bomb is dropped, then other characters can pick it up and use it as an item. The bomb can also be caught by other characters. When the bomb is flashing red, that indicates that it is about to explode. If a bomb explodes on the character holding it, then they will take a minor amount of damage. As the bomb is an item, Link cannot use the move if he is already holding another item. Link's bomb is unique in the fact that it can deal damage to anyone, including the user's team members.
Link's boomerang (neutral special attack) goes farther if it is treated as a smash attack. Quickly tap the control stick to the side while hitting B to extend the range.
Like Samus, Link can use his bombs to aid his recovery. However, unlike Samus, Link must use a bit of technical skill and timing. While recovering, pull out a bomb and drop it slowly below Link. Continue to DI toward the stage and then use his back aerial. This will cause Link to explode toward the platform. Use his Up B and land back safely. Note that Link will not be able to grab the edge because the explosion causes him to face the other direction. To counter this, throw his boomerang before using his Up B. This technique is extremely situational and extremely difficult to perform. Even if one could perform it poorly helps to recover in very few cases.