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Villager is the primary representative for Animal Crossing. He was made with love and care to fully express Animal Crossing and all of it's content, from the sapling in his dash attack, to his ability to pocket projectiles, to the shovel in his Down Smash, Villager's design is a love letter to Animal Crossing, and some people love Villager as much as they love Animal Crossing, or are interested in the character because of his unique design contrast to most of the cast. This is the people that this guide is aimed towards. Villager is a hardcore zoner, a zoner is a character that walls you out often with projectiles and disjointed moves in order to gain stage control and wear the opponent down from a distance. Villager will use his projectiles to force his opponent to pick an option in neutral, and depending on the option he will punish accordingly. He thrives offstage to kill the opponent at extremely low percentages with his aerials, specials, and even his Forward Smash. He rewards you for adapting and getting inside your opponent's head, by allowing you to completely control the pace of the game, but punishes you for making a mistake or guessing incorrectly. Villager has to find a way to poke an opponent shield due to not having a good grab, and can struggle to kill randomly, in order to effectively use this character, you must be able to read your opponent and keep control of the stage in order to force scenarios where Villager can find a kill. It's important to note that this guide relies on you knowing at least some Smash terminology along with knowing most, if not all the mechanics behind Ultimate and how it works.
I would like to thank MetalMusicMan for creating and allowing public use of ultimateframedata.com, which is where I got all of my framedata information.
Super Smash Brothers Ultimate runs at 60 frames per second unless an outside factor affects this, such as online connection. Frames are used to show time. For example, Little Mac's Jab 1 has it's hitboxes come out on Frame 1. This means it will come out on the very first frame when the game recognizes that you inputted a Jab. It takes 1/60th of a second. Ganondorf's Up-Tilt has it's hitboxes come out on Frame 60. It takes a full second for the attack to be able to deal damage, in other words, very slow. Understand how frames work is crucial to understanding this guide and Villager's moves.
Villager has a weight of 92, around a middleweight.
Villager has an air acceleration value of 0.06, causing Villager to take a while before reaching his maximum air speed.
Villager has a maximum airspeed of 0.987, making him slow in the air even at his top air speed.
Villager has a fall speed of 1.32, and the speed increases by 60% if you fastfall, making Villager very slow in the air.
Villager's initial dash speed is 1.815, very below average, causing him to be slow when he begins to run.
Villager's run speed is 1.397, in case you couldn't figure it out, Villager is rather slow.
Villager is also capable of doing a walljump, an input where if you press jump and tilt the L-Stick to the same direction as which side of the stage you are on, Villager will use the stage to bounce off of it and gain extra height.
Villager's spotdodge has invincibility frames (i-frames)for frames 3-17, a fresh spotdodge will last for 20 frames and a fully staled spotdodge will last 25 frames.
Villager's forward roll has i-frames on Frames 4-15 and will be 29 frames total fresh, and will be noticeably slower fully staled.
Villager's back roll has i frames on Frames 5-16, and will last 34 frames total fresh.
VIllager's Neutral airdodge has i-frames on Frames 3-30, and lasts 57 frames total, unlike rolls and spotdodges, airdodges do not have a staling factor.
I am not going to go into every single directional airdodge's individual framedata, but if you wish, you can check the source at the beginning of the guide.
Spotdodge-cancelling, a techinque where you input any grounded attack that cancels the latter half of your spotdodge animation is really good in this game, so using it a decent amount is fine, but overusing it can get very predictable and get you killed with a single charged smash attack if you're not careful. Villager is very floaty so using an airdodge in a wrong place can be very bad because it will leave you even more vulnearable than the average character. It's a good idea to mix up airdodging with your Neutral Air since the properties of both moves come out the same frame, allowing for a decent 50/50 that you can mix in with double jumps. You can use a directional airdodge to recover back to stage combined with a walljump, and if you whiff Villager's Balloon Trip will usually save you distance wise, but it will still leave you vulnerable to edge guards.
Every attack with a hitbox makes some sort of shieldstun. Shieldstun is represented by how many frames the opponent has to punish the attack. For example, Ryu's Neutral Aerial is -1 on shield, meaning the opponent has 1 frame to punish. However, most attacks you have to at drop your shield, which takes 11 frames, the exceptions to this rule being jumping out of shield, which will take three frames before you can do any aerial because of the three frames it takes for jumpsquat, Up-Smash out of shield, and Up-B's out of shield. Certain characters have better shield options than others. Mr.Game & Watch can punish a -4 attack on his shield, but Donkey Kong cannot.
Now that we understand how hitting and getting out of shield works, let's go over Villager's best Out-Of-Shield.(OOS)
Villager's best OOS option is Neutral Air, taking only six frames total, an excellent OOS option.
His second best OOS is Up Air, taking 9 frames total, followed by Up-Smash, taking 12 frames, much more of a commitment.
Grabbing out of shield is a horrible idea, taking 18 frames, almost taking, a third of a second, which doesn't sound bad, except that every character in the game has at least one grounded option faster than that and the slowest spotdoge is Frame 4.
It is important to note that all damage listed does not account for the 1v1 multipler or staled moves.
Jab 1 will come out on Frame 1, is -16 on shield, and will be active between Frames 3-4, you can also lead this into Jab 2.
Jab 2 also comes out on Frame 3, making it take 6 frames to do Jab 1 and 2, is -18 on shield, and is also active for frames 3-4.
After this you are able to do a rapid jab, which will start activating 3 frames after Jab 2 if you choose, so being Frame 3, the attack will linger for however long as you choose to hold, and will alternate though punches every four or five frames.
Once you release your Rapid Jab there will be a finisher attack that will activate on Frame 7, is -28 on shield. All stages of the move do 1%.
Jab is a good get-off-me tool that can also be used to pressure shield and do a nice amount of shield damage. Jab is also a good move to do when you land a down smash at low to mid percent because the opponent will be able to mash out of pretty much any other option.
Forward Tilt comes out on Frame 8. The hitbox is active for frames 8-11 and the move lasts 33 frames total. The move does 9% and is -16 on shield. However, it is still safe on shield against OOS options if spaced at the tip of the move.
Forward Tilt is a nice disjointed move that can be used to pressure shield when Slingshot isn't a good option whether it be because of reflectors or other reasons. It's also a good tool to catch people attempting to land on top of you by just moving to the opposite direction, catching neutral airdodge landings fairly well.
Up Tilt has a seven frame startup, the movie is active for frames 7-18, before having a finishing hitbox on Frame 22, active for Frames 22-25. The first hit does 5%, and the following hit does 6%. The first hit is -35 on shield, with the second being -19. The attack takes 47 frames total before resetting back to default.
Up-Tilt is a fairly niche move that can kill off the top around 135-140% depending on character and rage. It's an alright active hotbox to catch landings but generally using Up-Air is almost always a better option.
Down Tilt has a start up of 9 frames, and has a sweet spot and sour spot. It's active on Frames 9-11 and the animation lasts 37 frames total. The sweetspot does 12% and does much more knockback compared to the sourspot dealing only 10% and having less knockback.The sweet spot is -17 and the sourspot is -18.
Down Tilt is one of Villager's only kill moves. It can be difficult to hit and it has no reliable confirms into it but it has good knockback and good damage. Unlike Isabelle Villager has no confirms into it so you'll mostly be landing by reacting/guessing grounded ledge options and punishing accordingly. It quite obviously has no real use against aerial ledge options.
Dash Attack starts on Frame 9, and has two hitboxes. The strong hitbox will be active on Frames 9-14, and the sourspot is active for frames 15-22. The attack is -22 but it is strictly a projectile. The sweetspot will deal 10% and the sourspot will do 6%. The attack will last for 44 frames total.
This move can suprise people because it falls off at an angle that can catch people drifting mindlessly back to stage, it's a lot less of a commitment than bowling ball at the edge and can potentially lead into a Slingshot if you land it a certain way offstage.
Forward Smash at it's fastest will release on Frame 25, and it can be charged on Frame 16. Villager will be stuck in an animation for 44 frames, but the bowling ball can be active for 144 frames depending on where F-Smash is used. The move has two hitboxes. One does 15% and begins on Frame 25 and ends on Frame 30 uncharged, and the other half of the attack does 17% and is active for however long it is on the screen uncharged. Both hitboxes are -4 on shield, incredibly safe.
Forward Smash is a linear, but destructive edgeguarding option. It kills at low percentages and allows you to have an offstage presence without going offstage or setting up a tree. It being charageable allows you to bide your time and have the end result being extremely explosive. It's used when you land a Down Smash, however depending on the opponent's mashing abilities this may not work.
Up-Smash uncharged will start on Frame 12, and will be active for two frames each on Frames 12,17,21,25,29, and Frame 33, the latter having a finisher hitbox. The animation will last 53 frames total, and the charge hold is on Frame 7. The first hitbox will do 3%, the finisher will do 4%, and everything in between will do 1%. It is -8 on shield.
Up-Smash is typically your best option when you land a sweetspot bury from Down-Smash. It's a nice disjointed hitbox to occasionally cover bad landings, like a Bowser Bomb or a suicide down air.
The move has two hitboxs, a front hit and back hit, the front hit will come out on Frame 9 and the latter on Frame 29, the sweetspots will be active on Frames 9 and 29, and the sourspots are active on Frames 10-11 and 30-31. The front hit is -35 and the back hit is -15. The charge hold is Frame 3, and the move is 49 frames total. The sweetspot does 6% and the sourspot does 3%.
Down Smash is a high risk high reward kind of move. Usually you can get a reward off of it. Whether it's a Jab, an aerial, or a smash attack at high percent, it's always nice damage. Keep in mind certain attacks may be too laggy due to good mashing, which most good players are capable of.
Nair (Neutral Air) comes out on Frame 3, having a sweetspot active for frames 3-10, and a sourspot for frames 11-23. The move lasts 35 frames total, and has eight frames of landing lag. The move does 9% and 5% on the sweet and sour spot respectively. It autocancels before the startup of the move and will autocancel again on Frame 27 until the animation is over. It is -4 on shield with the sweetspot and -5 with the sourspot.
This is probably Villager's best non-projectile move. It's fast and your best OOS option. Both the sweetspot and sourspot have their uses, the sweetspot being used for shield pressure with how safe it is and OOS options, and the sourspot for a lingering offstage hitbox to gimp opponents. It's a very good move, however it doesn't have a lot of range so you don't want to throw it around too much in neutral, as you'll get stuffed out by bigger hitboxes, of which there is no shortage of.
Forward Air starts out on Frame 10 and has a 39 frame animation total. It is -4 on shield and has three hitboxes. The strongest hitbox does 7%, and is active for Frames 10-12. The second hitbox does 4%, is active for Frames 13-18, and the weakest hitbox is active for Frames 19-23, and does 2.5%. It has 14 frames of landing lag, and can be autocancelled on Frames 1-2 and Frame 30 onward.
Back Air starts up on Frame 13, it's strong hitbox activates for Frames 13-15, a weaker hitbox is active for Frames 16-21, and the weakest hitbox is active for Frames 22-26. The damage of the hitboxes in order are 9%, 5%, and 3%. The move has 14 frames of landing lag and lasts for 35 frames total. It autocancels on frames 1-2 and Frame 30 onwards, and is -3 on shield.
Fair and Bair are your best aerials. Slingshot is the main part of your neutral. They zone, pressure, and cover options incredibly well. Fair is the more common neutral option due to Villager not having to turn around or RAR unlike Bair and also is faster, it's also less powerful, being the better option to stale. Bair is still important to use as it hits a lot harder giving you more stage to work with than if you hit the opponent with Fair. The moves also catch jumps very well and Slingshot will often lead to an offstage sitiution, which Villager can capitalize on with more Slingshot or Nair.
Up Air has a random chance of pulling 1-3 turnips every time you use the move.
Up Air has three verisons of the move, depending on the amount of turnips. No matter the number of turnips, Up Air starts on Frame 6, the strong hitbox will be active for frames 6-7, and the weak hitbox will be active for Frames 8-21, it autocancels on Frames 1-5 and Frame 39 onward, has 12 frames of landing lag and lasts for 42 frames total. 3 Turnips does 13%, 2 Turnips does 10%, and 1 turnip does 8%. 3 Turnips is -7 on shield, and pulling any less is -8 on shield.
Up Air is a really fast juggling tool that stays out for a decently long time and racks up damage. Of course, the effectiveness of this move can vary to be very very good to rather underwhelming and somewhere in-between depending on how many turnips Villager pulls, but it'll still be just as fast and be active for just as long. it also can punish really really unsafe moves on shield, usually buffered single-hit aerials if they drift in.
Down Air has the same turnip properties as Up Air.
Down Air also has factors that depend on how many turnips you pull. The move comes out on Frame 14, it's strong hitbox is out for Frames 14-15, and the weak hitbox is active for Frames 16-29. The move lasts for 45 frames total, has 12 frames of landing lag, and is autocancelable on Frames 1-13 and Frame 39 onwards. The move is -7 if you pull 3 turnips, and -8 in all other cases. The move does 13% with 3 turnips, 10% with 2, and 8% with 1. The move also has a spike hitbox in the center of the turnips that gets stronger the more turnips you pull.
Down Air is a nice disjointed hitbox to 2-frame the opponent and can also spike, which getting a spike offstage is usually good. It's a much slower move than it used to be however and the spike hitbox is pretty small, so landing it can be pretty tough, especially with the varying random turnip sizes, so be careful with going for the move.