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Facing Mental Battles in Smash Ultimate

When players face off, there are many factors that add up to total the victor. Mental stamina is an important skill for any Smash player. The first player that falters in this regard is posed to take a big hit.

When a player’s mental stamina drops, they start playing worse. Not just in one area – everything starts to slow down and players even start to miss basic conversions. However, just as a mind can falter, so too can it just as easily be set back into its proper course. To learn from the mind, it’s important to look at three different key moments.

There are many ways to steer the mind back into the match and stay mentally intact throughout a set. However, one must learn how to best improve and maintain mental stamina before, during and after they step into the ring.

Before the Set

The mental battle starts before the match – a result of an inner battle that goes on between the player and their mind and pregame anxieties. The anticipation of a match may put many things in the player’s head. If a player is new to the scene, the thought of going against a tough opponent may be terrifying. Or the player just hasn’t had a good day. Yet, arriving at the set with a defeated mindset only assures the player’s downfall.

Every player should arrive at a set with the mindset of “I will do my best”. This way, the player’s mentality focuses knows to focus on its known strengths and shows willingness to experience continued growth. It puts the mind in a frame of overcoming the self and not the opponent. That way, in case of a tough defeat, the player can look clearly back at their mistakes and learn from them

During the Set

In a set, a lot will go wrong for both players. It’s only the natural flow the game takes when two minds try to best each other.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: The Mental Battle
It’s very important to focus on the match. Sounds simple, but many people tend to look back at mundane things. Image: Know When Know How

Maintaining mental fortitude through this clash of wills requires some refocusing. Self-reflection is important for everyone’s improvement cycle, but it must happen post-match. It’s easy letting the inner critic take the wheel. However, that critic doesn’t play Smash. Focusing on the negative sets the player back. Consequently, giving the opponent the higher ground in regards to mentality all but assures their victory.

To come out on top in a set, it’s very important to keep the focus on what is happening in the present. Even the slightest flashback will make the mental fortitude falter.

After the Set

A good player gets back up after falling down. All the greats have endured tons of losses before growing into their full potential. As previously stated, it’s important for players to not beat themselves up. After losing a match, everyone needs some time to cool off. It is only a normal way to feel after losing in a highly competitive game.

Yet the important part comes after that. Players need to gather strength to look back on their mistakes and learn. Only then will improvement occur. If the player accepts that the opponent is just purely better, then there’s no room for growth.

Keeping the sights set on a future goal helps fuel the mind. That way, the player makes sure the only way to go is up.


Keeping a positive mindset makes everyone perform better. To get the most out of the competitive experience, players need to keep a positive outlook on things. These mindsets discussed make or break a player. It’s important to keep learning as one progresses to hopefully someday be the EVO champion.



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Featured image provided by Nintendo

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