It’s almost been a month since patch 3.1.0 dropped for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, where most characters received notable additions. The influx of newer, up-and-coming players and the some of the world’s finest players consistently keep expanding the community’s views, showing what is possible for certain characters. Compared to the previous patch, there are some characters that rose in the ranks. Adding to this, the top tiers were slightly nerfed, directing the game towards an overall more balanced place than it was prior.
In this tier list, the A and B tiers are segmented in three different parts being the plus, neutral, and minus divisions. This gives more clarity to the list and adds a layer of certainty. Traditionally, tier lists only have the S, A, B, C, and D. However, this doesn’t sit well in a game as balanced as Smash Ultimate is.
This tier only has one tenant. Little Mac’s kit doesn’t suit this particular iteration of the game. His nonexistent aerial game and poor recovery game make his gameplay extremely linear. To compensate for his shortcomings, he has super armor on all his smash attacks. However, he falls short on almost every category. When looking into it, he has a poor combo game, lack of a decent recovery, and no aerial game. With this in mind, his possibilities of winning a major are virtually zero unless the balance team finds a way to make his kit work.
This section is full of characters that are missing a certain element to bump them up. As an example, Bayonetta doesn’t perform well after a big amount of landing lag got added to her specials. Characters like Piranha Plant, Isabelle and Samus are too slow to compete with most characters, consequently having an awful matchup spread.
Characters in this tier have the potential to perform well in the hands of great players. They are still way off when looking for results, but they still have a chance. They all have good sides to their kits but have fundamental flaws. A great showing of this is Ridley. He has combo tools, a decent neutral, but doesn’t have a good recovery.
Some characters from this tier have already gotten results at majors – most notably Mr. Game and Watch, Sonic and Meta Knight. They are carried by very talented players that built their metagame from the ground up. However, when competing with most high tiers (A-, A, A+), they struggle in different areas.
This tier is when characters start getting some ground. They have solid combo game, but their matchup spreads aren’t great. Most of them are carried by certain players, but their potential stands. Characters like Ryu, Luigi and Ike have deadly combo games with useful kill confirms.
Around here is where consistency starts to show. In major tournaments, these characters show up with elite representation. They have a high potential, and succeeding with them is easier than with the lower tiers. The tools they carry are solid, and they suffer from smaller weaknesses. However, they are far from being the ideal characters.
This tier contains characters which have performed excellently at majors. Most notably, Wario. A character which Gavin “Tweek” Dempsey has won majors with. Adding some contrast to this, it also carries characters like Falco and Greninja. Both characters that don’t have solid tournament performances in majors, but have the potential to perform in the future. All of them have solid tools and good matchup spreads.
Full of excellent performers in majors this tier has excellent characters. Wolf is among the easiest characters in the game to pick up, allowing many players to greatly perform with him. James “VoiD” Makekau-Tyson managed to perform greatly with Pichu. Leonardo “MKLeo” Lopez carries the Joker meta winning three majors in a row with the most recent addition to the cast. Everyone in this tier has solid matchup spreads and high potential.
The leaders of the pack all have excellent overall tools. They carry kill confirms, solid recoveries and a good amount of placings in majors. As an example, Eric “ESAM” Lew has shown that Pikachu can perform greatly in the game. Also, players like Nairoby “Nairo” Quesada and Yuta “Abadango” Kawamura play Palutena getting excellent placings along the way.