Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List: All fighters ranked plus the best melee, sword and ranged fighters explained

Fighting your friends in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has become more heated than ever, but with over 70 playable characters, it can be tough to choose which is the best Smash Bros Ultimate character to try.

We’ve done the hard work and worked out a Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List in order to help you get to grips with competitive play, updated to include all the latest Smash Bros DLC characters, up to the newly available Min Min, released July 2020.

On this page:

One of the first things that you should look out for is the general play style of the character. We’ve segmented these into three categories, Melee, Sword and Ranged. Be aware however, that some characters (such as Link and all of his variants) do not generally fit into this mould.

When you have settled on which character to play as, you need to get them first – which is where our Super Smash Bros Ultimate character unlock page comes in handy. We also have some Super Smash Bros Ultimate tips if you want to brush up on the essentials, plus everything we know about Super Smash Bros Ultimate DLC.

Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List

We’ve attempted to rank every current fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate into a single list, based on their strengths, weaknesses, options for attack, recovery and general attack power.

Patch 8.0 has finally arrived after six long months of no updates, and with it comes our first fighter from the second season of fighters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Min Min.

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Alongside Min Min, 8.0 comes with a slew of buffs and updates to existing characters. So, we’ve taken it upon ourselves to take a look at these brand-new balance changes, and review every single character in the current roster to find out who you should definitely pick, and which characters you don’t want to invest your time into.

Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List (Fighters ranked by Tier, last updated July 6th, 2020)

Tier Characters
Best Lucina, Peach, Daisy, Pikachu, Pichu, R.O.B, Hero, Chrom, Ridley, Inkling, Olimar, Ryu, Young Link, Toon Link, Wii Fit Trainer, Falco
Strong Roy, Marth, Mega Man, Yoshi, Mewtwo, Fox, Cloud, Bayonetta, Bowser, Donkey Kong, Isabelle, Villager, Ken, Link, Simon, Richter, Shulk, King K.Rool, Lucario, Joker, Corrin, Lucas, Robin, Incineroar, Terry, Ike, Snake
Good Pit, Dark Pit, Samus, Dark Samus, Wolf, Ness, Palutena, Pokemon Trainer, Rosalina and Luma, Sonic, Zero Suit Samus, Zelda, Greninja, Mr Game and Watch, Mii Brawler, Mii Gunner, Mii Swordfighter, Wario, Jigglypuff, King Dedede
Average Banjo, Bowser Jr., Diddy Kong, Duck Hunt Duo, Ice Climbers, Mario, Luigi, Dr. Mario, Meta Knight, Pac-Man, Piranha Plant, Sheik, Captain Falcon, Kirby, Byleth, Min Min
Weak Ganondorf, Little Mac

Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List changes at a glance

Between new characters and patches, here’s Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List has changed since the arrival of Min Min and the 8.0 update:

  • Min Min (NEW – Average)
  • Wii Fit Trainer (Strong to Best)
  • King Dedede (Average to Good)
  • Falco (Good to Best)
  • Ike (Good to Strong)
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Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List (Fighters listed alphabetically)

Smash Bros Fighter Tier ranking
Bayonetta Strong
Bowser Strong
Bowser Jr. Average
Byleth Average
Captain Falcon Average
Chrom Best
Cloud Strong
Corrin Strong
Daisy Best
Dark Pit Good
Dark Samus Good
Diddy Kong Average
Donkey Kong Strong
Dr Mario Average
Duck Hunt Duo Average
Falco Best
Fox Strong
Ganondorf Weak
Greninja Good
Hero Best
Ice Climbers Average
Ike Strong
Incineroar Strong
Inkling Best
Isabelle Strong
Jigglypuff Good
Joker Strong
Ken Strong
King Dedede Good
King K. Rool Strong
Kirby Average
Link Strong
Little Mac Weak
Lucario Strong
Lucas Strong
Lucina Best
Luigi Average
Mario Average
Marth Strong
Mega Man Average
Meta Knight Average
Mewtwo Strong
Mii Brawler Good
Mii Gunner Good
Mii Swordfighter Good
Min Min Average
Mr Game and Watch Good
Ness Good
Olimar Best
Pac-Man Average
Palutena Good
Peach Best
Piranha Plant Average
Pichu Best
Pikachu Best
Pit Good
Pokemon Trainer Good
R.O.B Best
Richter Strong
Ridley Best
Robin Strong
Rosalina and Luma Good
Roy Strong
Ryu Best
Samus Good
Sheik Average
Shulk Strong
Simon Strong
Snake Strong
Sonic Good
Terry Strong
Toon Link Best
Villager Strong
Wario Good
Wii Fit Trainer Best
Wolf Good
Yoshi Strong
Young Link Best
Zelda Good
Zero Suit Samus Good

How we settled on our Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List – and how it’s changed in the latest update

Patch 8.0 has finally arrived, and with it the first significant balance changes for almost half a year, so we’ve done the work and revisited every character on the balance changes sheet to see just what the real shakers and movers really are.

What we’ve seen in general in 8.0 is a general buff to many characters who are on our list in the lower to mid-tiers. These changes are mostly focused upon the characters who aren’t quite as strong, and who have now been brought in line.

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Since this balance change is pretty significant, we’ve found that with a lot of these changes, it’s only really brought most of the affected characters in line with the rest of the tier list, and their changes are not really significant enough to warrant a bump up in the tier list.

However, this doesn’t go for everyone. The common theme, as seen in the patch notes is that a lot of smash damage, and vulnerabilities have been reduced.

This affects some characters more so than others, so we’ve picked out the fighters who seem to have benefited the most here, and bumped them up in the tier list.

Let’s kick off with an old fan favourite, Falco. A great in almost every game that he’s appeared in, Falco is a top choice for many pro players, even in Super Smash Bros Ultimate.

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However, so far during the game’s lifecycle, we’ve not been too impressed with his current incarnation. That all changes in patch 8.0, where he’s received some significant buffs that extend Falco’s options quite a bit, where he ends up inching ever closer towards how he played in Melee.

His up smash is significantly easier to combo, and now launches enemies further, as well as his down tilt being buffed, and now, his iconic side special lasts a little bit longer, as well as being faster.

This all makes for Falco not only becoming a little bit better, but significantly so, especially when it comes to combos, this makes Falco feel a bit more like his old self, and that can only be a good thing. We think that this makes Falco not only a Strong character, but potentially one of the best to play as, as of patch 8.0.

It’s a similar story when it comes to Wii Fit Trainer. They have always been a good contender on our tier list, but these recent changes have only done more to push them up and into a higher tier.

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Their Up Smash comes out quicker, and their vulnerability has been reduced on a number of attacks. However, one of the most notable changes is their neutral special getting an extended launch distance, compounded with the reduced vulnerability specifically on the forward air makes for a potent combination.

We already knew that Wii Fit Trainer was a great character to play as, and these changes just eke them into the ‘Best’ tier.

It’s a slightly different story for our lad Ike, who has been shuffled across the list multiple times already, and this is because while Ike is a strong character, we’ve found that his speed can be a bit of an issue for many.

Ike is one character who has actually gotten a slight debuff, in a sea of buffed characters, but this is just limited to his neutral air attack, but when you look at the rest of the changes, Ike has actually been significantly buffed.

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Again, with a number of reduced vulnerabilities, and the up special now not being able to be neutralised,it’s made for a more deadly combination, as his dash attack and extended launches make for easier combos.

When you compound this with the fact that Ike hits like a truck, we think he’s not only a dead ringer for one of the higher tiers, but he now sits comfortably in the “Strong” tier.

Last but certainly not least is King Dedede, who has also enjoyed a range of buffs that we think slots him into a higher tier, and right into the ‘Good’ tier, instead of previously languishing in ‘Average’.

While King Dedede might not be our top choice when it comes to some of the slower characters, he’s certainly seen a significant boost in power. Some of his hard-hitting attacks like forward air, up air and up tilt have all had extended launch distance, with up tilt also enjoying some increased power.

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The range on his neutral special; Inhale has also had a slight extension of range, and also has its speed increased. While this makes it King Dedede slightly better, the limitations in speed make him settle in at a single jump in tiers from ‘Average’ to ‘Good’.

How good are Joker, Piranha Plant, Hero, Banjo and Kazooie, Terry Bogard, Byleth and Min Min in our Super Smash Bros Ultimate Tier List?

The addition of new characters always add new dimensions to the tier list ranking. Kicking off with Piranha Plant, its range of moves and attacks make it a slightly weaker ranged character, but it doesn’t quite give you the same sort of options as the most recent addition, Joker adds.

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Joker is incredibly versatile, with fantastic close range and melee attacks, in addition to a dynamic recovery. In addition to this, when you fill his gauge up and unleash his persona, Joker becomes a master of zone control, if you want to keep your enemies at bay, you can – but you can also stand toe-to-toe with some of the better melee fighters, but a change to the way that Arsene reacts to projectiles in 4.0 means that we’ve given him a slightly lower ranking.

That said, a Joker player just won Evo 2019. Sometimes, raw tiers don’t always count towards player skill!

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In update 4.0, we saw the addition of Dragon Quest’s Hero and his many cosmetic incarnations. And phwoar, he’s very strong. Being a swordfighter, Hero has an MP Bar, with a menu ability that allows you to use special attacks, that often do some incredible damage, including a movement and speed buff.

Additionally, you’re able to block projectiles with a forward tilt, and his special attacks consume a slight bit of MP. If you fully charge your side special, Zapple, you’re able to almost certainly thwack an enemy right off stage. With really strong normals, tilts and smashes, and to top it all off, a skill named Thwack, that has the potential to instantly KO enemies.

It’s likely that Hero may be banned in future tournaments, just because he’s that good.

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The fourth character, Banjo and Kazooie, is worth considering thanks to a decent range of attacks.

Banjo and Kazooie’s normal attacks and tilts can come across as slightly stubby, and as such they aren’t a great fighter when playing up close, with Banjo and Kazooie you’ll want to use their excellent throw and side special to do a big hunk of damage and close the gap.

If your opponent is at range, you’re also able to use their side special, which spouts eggs at the enemy. The trick with Banjo and Kazooie is that because their side special is so strong, they give you limited uses by the way of feathers, so use them wisely.

Banjo and Kazooie is an incredibly situational character, and not really the best all rounder, even with their range of attacks, which is why we have placed them in the average section of our tier list.

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Patch 6.0 introduced Fatal Fury and Garou: Mark of the Wolves legend, Terry Bogard.

This technical fighter is not for players who cannot quickly perform fighting game inputs, but if you handily know how to do Supers and special moves in Street Fighter, you’ll be fine.

Either way, you can practice in the training room until you’ve nailed it.

Terry has a lot of special moves, and with the right inputs you’ll be able to master them all. Tapping B does Power Wave, a short-ranged projectile that tracks across the floor, a quarter circle forward and B or A will do Burn Knuckle, a horizontal punch that covers a decent amount of ground.

Back, down back and down will perform Crack Shoot, an overhead kick that is a really good situational gap closer, which will help out with your zoning and distances.

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Power Dunk is forward, down and down forward which will launch your enemies into the air and smash them back down again, which is great for getting those high percentage spikes.

Terry’s final special Rising Tackle isn’t too useful we’ve found, and is an attack that launches you upwards, dealing a minimal amount of damage.

Just from these moves alone, Terry isn’t too powerful, and can be hard to close the gap with ranged fighters, but due to the amount of air attacks that Terry has, he can do excellently when fighting offstage.

The real interesting meat, and what tipped Terry from Good to Strong in our Tier list are the special moves that he gets when he hits 100% damage, where a ‘Go’ will appear near his character portrait.

Power Geyser requires you to input down, down back, back, down back, forward and A or B, this will make Terry perform a quick smash to the ground, which can kill at relatively low percentages, and launch your opponents into the air.