Official Competitive Character Impressions 2.0

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MG_3989

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I mean, Pikachu's definitely a good character, and I'm not trying to put down the dude's skill, but isn't it pretty much a meme at this point that ESAM habitually overrates the character? "Only loses to Olimar and sort-of-kind-of Ness" makes me suspicious -- I'd expect more people to pick him up if that were really the case.
I mean I think he truly believes this is the matchup chart but why did he lose in top 8 to Light 3-0 if Fox is a +1 matchup? He could say Light is just that much better a player than him but I don’t think he believes that’s true either

I think a lot of the -1 matchups are probably even and Pikachu probably loses a few more matchups. I don’t know enough about Pikachu to have a deep comment on this but ESAM has always been quite biased. He’s a great player but his biggest flaw might be his bias
 
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Only Olimar has a winning MU against Pika and Ness is close.

What is your opinion in this MU?
Sounds plausible to me. When comparing Pikachu and Pichu, it's pretty clear that while Pichu has greater strengths, he also has greater weaknesses. Pikachu's extra range and hitbox on Quick Attack and lack of self-damage has the potential to turn some MUs that are bad for Pichu into Even for Pikachu. As such, I think Pikachu has the potential to be a better solo main. However, Pichu still has greater strengths than Pichu, so if a player mains Pichu and has a good secondary that combination is potentially stronger than solo Pikachu, assuming the player is able to juggle two characters. We've been seeing many Pichu's do well but, let's be honest, how many of Pichu's potentially bad MUs have they been running into?

I'm still on the fence on who's better, Pichu or Pikachu, and I think one can make a strong case for either (Pichu being easier and arguably more fun to play* probably plays a role too).

*Subjective, but many people do seem to prefer Pichu over Pikachu.

I mean I think he truly believes this is the matchup chart but why did he lose in top 8 to Light 3-0 if Fox is a +1 matchup? He could say Light is just that much better a player than him but I don’t think he believes that’s true either
A +1 is a slight advantage, emphasis on slight. You make it sound like Pikachu-Fox is +3 for Pikachu, but it's +1 at most.
 

MG_3989

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Sounds plausible to me. When comparing Pikachu and Pichu, it's pretty clear that while Pichu has greater strengths, he also has greater weaknesses. Pikachu's extra range and hitbox on Quick Attack and lack of self-damage has the potential to turn some MUs that are bad for Pichu into Even for Pikachu. As such, I think Pikachu has the potential to be a better solo main. However, Pichu still has greater strengths than Pichu, so if a player mains Pichu and has a good secondary that combination is potentially stronger than solo Pikachu, assuming the player is able to juggle two characters. We've been seeing many Pichu's do well but, let's be honest, how many of Pichu's potentially bad MUs have they been running into?

I'm still on the fence on who's better, Pichu or Pikachu, and I think one can make a strong case for either (Pichu being easier and arguably more fun to play* probably plays a role too).

*Subjective, but many people do seem to prefer Pichu over Pikachu.

A +1 is a slight advantage, emphasis on slight. You make it sound like Pikachu-Fox is +3 for Pikachu, but it's +1 at most.
Yeah but with a slight advantage, unless Light is a far better player, it shouldn’t have been a 3-0. I mean of course somebody can go into a +1 against a simarly skilled player and just play badly, and it’s not like I’m saying he shoud always win a +1 set, but going 0-3 isn’t something that should often happen in an advantage matchup even if it’s only a slight advantage. It should at least play out more even. I know it’s a slight advantage but he should’ve at least taken a game off of that slight advantage unless he was just overmatched completely by the other player

If this is true it’s lucky we have a good amount of Ness’s and a couple Olimars or else Pikachu would show much more dominant results
 
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Emblem Lord

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The idea that playing high-skill-floor characters like Peach and Olimar instead of low-skill-floor characters like Wolf and Lucina takes more effort is ridiculous. The skill floor doesn't matter in a tournament setting because no one plays at the skill floor. To play any character at a high or top level you need to be way beyond the point where you're actively thinking about and engaging with the technical requirements of the character that you're playing. In a high-stakes match, you're only engaging with your opponent and your own mindset.

The best players play for thousands and thousands of games with their mains. Awkward character X might be difficult to use for the first 50 games, or the first 100, or even the first 200, but after 1k or 2k games, the awkwardness should have been stamped out by muscle memory.

This is all a clever john in disguise.
Who said anything about top level?

The reality is that most people are not true competitors, warriors, or students of the game they play.

They simply want to win and stroke their own ego.
 
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Yeah but with a slight advantage, unless Light is a far better player, it shouldn’t have been a 3-0. I mean of course somebody can go into a +1 against a simarly skilled player and just play badly, and it’s not like I’m saying he shoud always win a +1 set, but going 0-3 isn’t something that should often happen in an advantage matchup even if it’s only a slight advantage. It should at least play out more even
Light actually could have been the better player during that set. Being a top level player doesn't mean you're always playing optimally in every stock/match/set, you might be getting tournament nerves or you have a personal hang up against a specific character or player. Besides they were all pretty close matches anyway. Its not like Esam ever got demolished during any of those games.
 
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I find it amusing that while everyone is jumping on Wolf Zackray took a tournament with Wario in Japan.

Also it's best to just ignore esam when he's talking about Pikachu. I think in brawl he claimed pika had no losing MUs and went even vs MK. Definitely likes to hype up his main. Honestly don't know if he's ever not considered Pikachu top tier.
 

Nah

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It's entirely possible for a 3-0 to happen in a +1 MU, especially if you only look at one particular set.

On a different note, I'm not sure what's with the repeated phrase that "Lucina doesn't have to space". All characters have to space--spacing is a fundamental part of all forms of combat. Though I think that maybe (maybe) people get this and are just improperly phrasing it when what they mean to say is "Lucina gets punished less hard than Marth does for poor positioning".
 

MG_3989

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Light actually could have been the better player during that set. Being a top level player doesn't mean you're always playing optimally in every stock/match/set, you might be getting tournament nerves or you have a personal hang up against a specific character or player. Besides they were all pretty close matches anyway. Its not like Esam ever got demolished during any of those games.
I mean it’s obvious Light was the better player during that set, he won it. And I’m not saying that Pikachu definitely doesn’t have a slight advantage over Fox. All of the matches were close and fun to watch and I actually thought ESAM was gonna pull a couple out. I think player skill and who ever is the better player on a particular day is much more important than a slight advantage in a match up

All I’m saying is that with ESAM’s track record of bias and his 3-0 lose in that set he doesn’t have much basis at this moment to put Fox at disadvantage against Pikachu assuming they’re the best Fox and Pikachu players in the world and around equal in skill. And no I don’t think ESAM was at his best that set, I just threw it out there as something to think about
 

fozzy fosbourne

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Something Machabo, a top level Japanese guilty gear player, said about improving and standard characters: “By the way, it’s often said that you’ll get stronger faster by using a standard character. The reason for that is that you get to play the mind games and learn them. If you use peculiar characters, and win because the opponent didn’t understand your character, there are no mind games involved. In this case, you won’t be trained in mind games, and it’ll hinder your ability to get strong. Standard characters are easy to understand, so basically you need to play at least some sort of mind games with them to win. The reason why I recommend standard characters to new players apart from them being easy to control, is this.”
 
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Yeah but with a slight advantage, unless Light is a far better player, it shouldn’t have been a 3-0. I mean of course somebody can go into a +1 against a simarly skilled player and just play badly, and it’s not like I’m saying he shoud always win a +1 set, but going 0-3 isn’t something that should often happen in an advantage matchup even if it’s only a slight advantage. It should at least play out more even. I know it’s a slight advantage but he should’ve at least taken a game off of that slight advantage unless he was just overmatched completely by the other player
It doesn't work like this, a 3-0 in a +1 MU isn't even all that unlikely. If ESAM keep going 3-0 to Fox players then we have something to talk about. One set is statistically insignificant.

“By the way, it’s often said that you’ll get stronger faster by using a standard character.
I'm inclindes to agree with this. Using a niche, gimmicky character will often teach you how to play that particular niche, gimmicky character, but it might not give you good fundamentals of the game. I've seen many players who mained low tier, gimicky characters struggle to play any character that wasn't their main (or at least show deep flaws in their gameplay).
 

MG_3989

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Something Machabo, a top level Japanese guilty gear player, said about improving and standard characters: “By the way, it’s often said that you’ll get stronger faster by using a standard character. The reason for that is that you get to play the mind games and learn them. If you use peculiar characters, and win because the opponent didn’t understand your character, there are no mind games involved. In this case, you won’t be trained in mind games, and it’ll hinder your ability to get strong. Standard characters are easy to understand, so basically you need to play at least some sort of mind games with them to win. The reason why I recommend standard characters to new players apart from them being easy to control, is this.”
I think there’s some truth there. Everyone knows how Mario or Fox for example work so most players won’t go into the matchup with a knowledge disadvantage and the Mario or Fox player has to rely on their skill more than anything else. If somebody gets good at Olimar and nobody else they’d probably have trouble picking up the rest of the roster

Also was just watching Plup vs MKLeo play friendlies. Leo was using Lucina and Ike and Plup was using Megaman. Plup was taking a good amount of games off of Leo and Leo has nothing but praise for him saying how a lot of the Melee players are really good. Maybe Plup is someone to watch out for especially now that he quit Melee
 
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AxelVDP

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Something Machabo, a top level Japanese guilty gear player, said about improving and standard characters: “By the way, it’s often said that you’ll get stronger faster by using a standard character. The reason for that is that you get to play the mind games and learn them. If you use peculiar characters, and win because the opponent didn’t understand your character, there are no mind games involved. In this case, you won’t be trained in mind games, and it’ll hinder your ability to get strong. Standard characters are easy to understand, so basically you need to play at least some sort of mind games with them to win. The reason why I recommend standard characters to new players apart from them being easy to control, is this.”
I can see where he's coming from but there's a difference between gimmicky character and "not a top tier" character.
You could make a similar argument with melee Falco, most lower level Falco players just learn the character instead of learning the game and go in some sort of autopilot.
One could even argue that using "bad" characters forces you to learn how to play around your weaknesses and be smarter overall...

What I wanted to say is: he's not wrong BUT you have to be careful on the actual context, taking this statement for granted could be somewhat misleading
 
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This isn't the first I heard of this and I'm curious which tournament was this? Cuz I can't find anything on this.
https://youtu.be/nO4m_zZP3c0

Those are some highlights maybe the full tournament will be uploaded soon. I find it difficult to find uploads from tournaments in Japan. Maybe on shi G twitch.
 
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I mean, Pikachu's definitely a good character, and I'm not trying to put down the dude's skill, but isn't it pretty much a meme at this point that ESAM habitually overrates the character? "Only loses to Olimar and sort-of-kind-of Ness" makes me suspicious -- I'd expect more people to pick him up if that were really the case.
I don't think that ESAM's match-up spread is ever really meant to be an accurate representation of the matchups themselves, but rather, a way to give Pikachu players an idea of what they could be doing in the matchup by generalizing what the other character can do and how Pikachu can play around it. In that sense, I think his match-up videos are the best in terms of content since they encourage Pikachu players to develop their meta and playstyle against different characters, rather than just give up and pick a secondary.
 

Ffamran

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and yeah the hitboxes and intangibility on Fire Wolf is pretty nuts. It is a lot harder to challenge while it is actually active than say Fox's.
Fire Wolf doesn't have invincibility. None of the frame data spreadsheets say this and it would have been noted early on considering we can see invincibility using training mode.

Wolf's page on the Japanese spreadsheet: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet...f1GGIteH35UX3IM7-mnbdG6eE/edit#gid=1509906936. Check under " 上B (ウルフシュート) ".
 

fozzy fosbourne

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I can see where he's coming from but there's a difference between gimmicky character and "not a top tier" character.
You could make a similar argument with melee Falco, most lower level Falco players just learn the character instead of learning the game and go in some sort of autopilot.
One could even argue that using "bad" characters forces you to learn how to play around your weaknesses and be smarter overall...

What I wanted to say is: he's not wrong BUT you have to be careful on the actual context, taking this statement for granted could be somewhat misleading
Oh, yeah, I think his point is independent of tiers. I was just reminded of it when reading posts about basic, easy to learn characters. I think that just because someone picks a character with less technical things to lab doesn’t mean that the player can’t still be putting in the same amount of practice and effort learning. It will just be on different stuff.

The post that that machabo quote came from though includes something about “weak or troll characters” by another top jp player, minami:

“Tendencies in people who have difficulties in getting better at games by Minami:

Thickheaded/close-minded
Autopilot the same stuff over and over again
Too much pride
Doesn’t listen to advice
Often blames the opponent when losing
Doesn’t research stuff
Weird fixations
Prefers weak or troll characters
Doesn’t accept situations where the opponent forces mindgames/rps on them
Too fixated on the current ongoing match instead of long term
More fixated on winning, than the contents of a match
Prioritizes winning over learning
Narrow field of vision
Likes wakarangoroshi (beating the opponent with things they don’t know about/understand)
Having excess confidence in ability to read the opponent
Low patience
Getting mad and having that affect the game in a negative manner
Not thinking from the opponent’s point of view

Tendencies found in people who improve fast:

Open-minded
Honest
Flexible way of thinking
Always trying out new stuff
Very patient
Steadily training without a hurry
Doesn’t dislike losing to the extreme
Focuses more on the contents of a match than the outcome
Objectively looks at their own merits and demerits and overcomes them
Enjoys the game
Is interested in other characters and other people’s matches”

Full post here: https://www.reddit.com/r/Guiltygear...ng_in_fighting_games/?st=JRZO50IM&sh=58d5e1fe

Anyways, this might be a derail, sorry if this is going way off course. I just think that people flocking to Lucina or Wolf is nothing to be ashamed of if they want to git gud.
 

Megamang

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Zero, during his reign, was grinding Diddy dittos for hours a day. Switching to meta characters is nothing new. I do wish we had more discussion regarding neutral and related stuff and not just advantage. The shift towards neutral airdodging shows that people do consider disadvantage state somewhat. Being able to survive a hit is just as likely to get you the game as winning off one less interaction. But, a good spotdodge probably won't get twitch clipped...


That said, we are seeing growth in all the game states.
 
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E.G.G.M.A.N.

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Pikachu's extra range and hitbox on Quick Attack and lack of self-damage has the potential to turn some MUs that are bad for Pichu into Even for Pikachu.
I'm curious as to what you consider to be Pichu's bad match-ups. It seems to me that he has the tools to go even or better with pretty much everyone in neutral. And his recovery is one of the best out there.
 
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I'm curious as to what you consider to be Pichu's bad match-ups.
It seems to be generally agreed that Olimar and Snake are bad matchups. Ness is often considered bad as well. Some borderline cases are Lucina, Marth, Shulk, and Lucas.

Pichu's recovery is very good but it lacks a hitbox so you can contest it easily. For this reason I believe Pikachu's is better (and Pikachu can get off ledge more easily than Pichu can). Pichu with Quick Attack would probably had been the best character in the game, so it's probably a good thing that Pichu has Agility instead.
 

E.G.G.M.A.N.

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It seems to be generally agreed that Olimar and Snake are bad matchups. Ness is often considered bad as well. Some borderline cases are Lucina, Marth, Shulk, and Lucas.

Pichu's recovery is very good but it lacks a hitbox so you can contest it easily. For this reason I believe Pikachu's is better (and Pikachu can get off ledge more easily than Pichu can). Pichu with Quick Attack would probably had been the best character in the game, so it's probably a good thing that Pichu has Agility instead.
Olimar, huh? Any particular reason why? It looks to me like Pichu could really tear him up once he gets in(he's also a free edgeguard with that slow, floaty up-b he has). Same with the anime swords(wo)men. I suppose Snake's grenades disrupt his combos, though. Does Snake have anything else over him in neutral?
 

Rocketjay8

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Olimar, huh? Any particular reason why? It looks to me like Pichu could really tear him up once he gets in(he's also a free edgeguard with that slow, floaty up-b he has). Same with the anime swords(wo)men. I suppose Snake's grenades disrupt his combos, though. Does Snake have anything else over him in neutral?
I think the reason why Olimar does so well against Pichu is because of yellow Pikmin blocking thunderjolt and hard to shake off because most of Pichu's moves are electric. Olimar's insane damage output + Pichu's self-damage + Pichu's lightweight = Bad time for him. It doesn't help that Olimar has a lot of good kill moves and a more range than Pichu.
 

PK Bash

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Pichu's recovery is very good but it lacks a hitbox so you can contest it easily. For this reason I believe Pikachu's is better (and Pikachu can get off ledge more easily than Pichu can). Pichu with Quick Attack would probably had been the best character in the game, so it's probably a good thing that Pichu has Agility instead.
Pikachu QA is very easy to contest as well though, is it not? Or is that just Ness privilege. But QA does 2%, no knockback and increases Pikachu's hurtbox drastically. I feel like that hitbox isn't saving him from anything.

Pichu has a frame 3 nair to get off the ledge with btw as well as Agility (which goes further than qa, I think...?). Pikachu's stuck with a load of multihits :/
 

J0eyboi

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I'm curious as to what you consider to be Pichu's bad match-ups. It seems to me that he has the tools to go even or better with pretty much everyone in neutral.
He really doesn't. Pichu wins matches in advantage, not through neutral. With the uncontested worst range in the game and average to mediocre mobility, Pichu's not very hard to keep out. Watch VoiD sets and you can see that a lot of his conversions start from either a hard callout, a whiff punish, or a punish on an opponent's overextension in advantage. Outside of those, he basically solely relies on Thunder Jolt pressure, and while Thunder Jolt is a good move, it's not so good that it makes up for all the obvious flaws elsewhere in Pichu's neutral (no spacing tools, bad burst options, mediocre air game).

As for losing matchups, I have a few ideas, but I'm just going to bring up Villager. Villy can throw out Rockets, each of which takes 2 Jolts to be destroyed, thus negating Pichu's best option for forcing his way in. Beyond that, he generally has the tools to keep Pichu at range. His recovery is also pretty difficult to edgeguard. Pichu definitely outrewards Villy for getting hits in, but he's going to have to work extremely hard to ever find hits.
 
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Zachmac

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I played a bit of Zelda earlier. For the record, these impressions come from training mode and online gameplay.

I think her air game seriously holds her back. Her Lightning Kicks are super satisfying when you land the sweetspot so I don't want to call them "bad" but they're certainly lacking in some areas compared to most character's fairs and bairs. She can't space with them for defensive play and she can't count on them for approaching in neutral. Even using them out of shield seems pretty finicky. She still has Nair at least, but that move has poor range and her awful aerial mobility really doesn't help with that.

Her specials are all actually really good in this game. Farore's Wind is a frame 6 OoS option and great recovery move, Phantom Slash is a good camping and pressure tool, Din's Fire is good for edgeguarding and occasionally forcing approaches and Nayru's Love is still the same annoying "get off me" tool it's always been. As good as they are though I don't think that fully makes up for not having safe aerials you can just throw out.

I'm still thinking about keeping her as a secondary / pocket character just because that Neutral B is a huge middle finger to Mega Man's kit.
 

PK Gaming

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Sounds plausible to me. When comparing Pikachu and Pichu, it's pretty clear that while Pichu has greater strengths, he also has greater weaknesses. Pikachu's extra range and hitbox on Quick Attack and lack of self-damage has the potential to turn some MUs that are bad for Pichu into Even for Pikachu. As such, I think Pikachu has the potential to be a better solo main. However, Pichu still has greater strengths than Pichu, so if a player mains Pichu and has a good secondary that combination is potentially stronger than solo Pikachu, assuming the player is able to juggle two characters.
Pikachu's current results pretty much preclude ESAM's matchup chart from being plausible. I don't think your comparison is all that substantial either; in terms of results, Pichu is both more consistent and has taken more relevant games than Pikachu at the moment. You can't just make the argument that Pikachu has the ability to turn bad Pichu matchups into even just from something as simple as Quick Attack properties and Self-damage. There are too many factors that go into a given matchup

We've been seeing many Pichu's do well but, let's be honest, how many of Pichu's potentially bad MUs have they been running into?
This is a pretty disingenuous argument on your part. You can't attribute Pichu's superior results over Pikachu with "the character isn't running into bad matchups." If anything, tournament results have shown us that Pichu is more solo viable than Pikachu. Also it's not really a tossup on which character is better at the moment; Pichu is blatantly better.

I don't think that ESAM's match-up spread is ever really meant to be an accurate representation of the matchups themselves, but rather, a way to give Pikachu players an idea of what they could be doing in the matchup by generalizing what the other character can do and how Pikachu can play around it. In that sense, I think his match-up videos are the best in terms of content since they encourage Pikachu players to develop their meta and playstyle against different characters, rather than just give up and pick a secondary.
ESAM's matchup chart is completely useless. Pikachu's myriad +1 matchups aren't meaningfully different from each other, so there's nothing that can be gained from it. A more realistic matchup chart would be helpful for Pikachu players, since the point is to put more weight on Pikachu's bad matchups, but ESAM's chart being a gigantic ego trip (that isn't even supported by tournament data) makes that impossible.
 
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LightLV

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Something Machabo, a top level Japanese guilty gear player, said about improving and standard characters: “By the way, it’s often said that you’ll get stronger faster by using a standard character. The reason for that is that you get to play the mind games and learn them. If you use peculiar characters, and win because the opponent didn’t understand your character, there are no mind games involved. In this case, you won’t be trained in mind games, and it’ll hinder your ability to get strong. Standard characters are easy to understand, so basically you need to play at least some sort of mind games with them to win. The reason why I recommend standard characters to new players apart from them being easy to control, is this.”
This concept is equally true when it comes to playing top-tier characters, at least at a certain level it becomes true.

In every fighting game, there comes a point where improving becomes less about technical skill, combos, damage, ect. and more about how well you are at concepts like pressure, covering options, okizeme, and developing a general "gameplan" for the matches you play. Players who are good at this will be good at EVERY competitive fighting game (unless you're playing a game where these concepts can't really be trained to any high degree, in which case it's probably a bad game like SFV or MvC:I).

The thing is, in games like Smash, where the gap between tiers can get REALLY wide, it's impossible for players to actually understand these concepts if they're using characters that literally cannot take advantage of them.

He's absolutely right about MU experience though, lesser played characters can very commonly take the win purely through a lack of matchup experience. But usually this is just due to gimmicks and the moment they get figured out it stops working.


Edit:

I think :ultpichu: is just like :ultchrom:. There's gonna come a point where he stops getting away with things and fall off due to his weaknesses.
 
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Nobie

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I've been looking at Mewtwo's basic jab lately, and I think it might be underutilized.

While it no longer pops the opponent up like it did in Smash 4, leading into easy jab-grab situations, the fact that it has such low knockback on Ultimate might be to its advantage.

Mewtwo jab is active on frames 6-7 with a first active frame of 23. For comparison, Lucina/Marth's is frames 5-6 with an FAF of 26. If Mewtwo single jabs an opponent at 0%, it's 0 on frame advantage, meaning both of them can act out of the move at the exact same time

However, as opponent damage increases, jab's advantage on hit increases, about 1 frame for every 50%. So at 100% on the opponent, single jab is +2 on hit. At 150%, +3. And because jab has such low knockback, it means the opponent more or less stands in place while getting hit even up to 200%, unlike down tilt which eventually can send them too far.

Mewtwo's fastest attacks are frame 6, so absolutely nothing is guaranteed except for the jab combo follow-up. However, it can potentially place the opponent in a tricky mixup situation. Do they start smash DI-ing in anticipation of the jab combo? If so, they might leave themselves vulnerable to a down tilt or something else. Do they shield? Then they might get grabbed. Other possible escape options exist, but they more or less all have counterplay on Mewtwo's part. And again, unlike a lot of attacks, the opponent hasn't flown away anywhere.

The only really difficult thing on Mewtwo's side is precision. If Mewtwo tries a non-special follow-up too soon, it automatically leads into a jab combo.
 
Joined
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Which characters do we think have the best neutral game in ultimate?
I’d say Wolf is a strong contender primarily due to his blaster being good. I’d also say inkling (dash dance is nuts and character has good buttons) and olimar (it’s really tough to get past his wall of Pikmin). The links are also really good in neutral just by virtue of how many/how good all their projectiles are. Mega man also seems incredibly difficult to approach.

As far as underrated neutrals, I’d say Samus (can’t overstate how good threat of charge shot is), sonic (being fast is really really good in this game), and the pk boys (pk Fire is an awesome zoning tool), Zelda

Overrated neutrals, I’d say snake (it’s not easy to keep characters out with nades, especially if they are fast/swordies), ivysaur (razor lead is amazing, but a lot of characters can easily beat it)
 
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You can't just make the argument that Pikachu has the ability to turn bad Pichu matchups into even just from something as simple as Quick Attack properties and Self-damage.
I didn't, I also mentioned range, which is huge.

You can't attribute Pichu's superior results over Pikachu with "the character isn't running into bad matchups."
Oh, and why is that? If Pichu wins every matchup but, say, 7, and Pichu mains almost never seem to run into those MUs (or switch to a secondary if they do), then we should keep that in mind when evaluating Pichu's tournament results. Even VoiD used Wolf to deal with Shuton's Olimar (he got 2-stocked with Pichu and then switched to Wolf and won the set).

If anything, tournament results have shown us that Pichu is more solo viable than Pikachu. Also it's not really a tossup on which character is better at the moment; Pichu is blatantly better.
Pichu is easier and arguably more fun to play than Pikachu, and some of the things Pikachu does better than Pichu can be pretty boring (Pikachu is better at playing campy, for instance, but most players, I would imagine, don't like playing campy). It's no surprise that a character with more players get more results, especially since Pikachu is harder to play. It's also notable that ESAM seems to stick with Pikachu more often while Pichu main often seem to have a secondary to fall back on.

That brings up another point for discussion: Should tier lists be based only on solo viability or on the character's value as a whole? Some characters are great secondaries or do great with a secondary, while others are solid overall but don't have the same strengths. I believe that tier lists should determine solo viability, so characters with great strengths and notable weaknesses might be lower on a tier list than characters with a more overall strength/weakness spread. With that in mind, it's possible that if we had an equal amount of Pikachu/Pichu players at top level, and everyone solo mained, Pikachu would do better.

That's one of the issues with relying on results: Some players don't solo main. VoiD doesn't, NAKAT doesn't, Captain L doesn't, while with Pikachu, while ESAM has been talking about using Yoshi, he's been relying on his Pikachu to take most sets. This means that players can switch characters to avoid bad MUs and thus make the character appear better than it really is. It's possible, and quite plausible, that Pikachu is more well-rounded than Pikachu and has fewer bad MUs overall. It's also possible, and quite likely, that Pichu players who also have a secondary can make up for this deficit by switching to the secondary.

Now, am I saying that Pikachu for sure is better as a solo character than Pichu? No, I don't know whether he is or not. I'm saying it's possible, and more than a bit probable. The argument can be had, and it's not obvious that Pichu is a better solo main than Pikachu (though Pichu + secondary being better than Pikachu + secondary is a different story, and I won't contest that Pichu is most likely better in that scenario).
 

fozzy fosbourne

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The thing is, in games like Smash, where the gap between tiers can get REALLY wide, it's impossible for players to actually understand these concepts if they're using characters that literally cannot take advantage of them.
Yeah, that might have been what Minami was referring to. This is also why I think it's not a bad idea to pick up a secondary character once you get proficient with one. I see a lot of newer smash players trying to pick a secondary that covers their main's matchups, and it seems misguided if they are only playing online or drowning in pools or whatever. They should probably pick a second character that covers the gaps in what they can be learning about the game.
 

Rizen

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Which characters do we think have the best neutral game in ultimate?
:ultyounglink: has one of the best neutrals easily. He out-camps almost everyone with 3 projectiles you can angle or throw in different directions. His mobility is slightly above average. YL has a f4 Nair which is fast enough to out-button most characters and along with Fair and Bair only has 6 frames landing lag. That Nair also gives him a safe f7 OoS aerial. There are very few characters who aren't forced to approach YL, especially if he bans BF and Lylat. Even Wolf and Pikachu have to. YL falls shot in other areas like killing but his neutral is amazing.
 
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I played a bit of Zelda earlier. For the record, these impressions come from training mode and online gameplay.

I think her air game seriously holds her back. Her Lightning Kicks are super satisfying when you land the sweetspot so I don't want to call them "bad" but they're certainly lacking in some areas compared to most character's fairs and bairs. She can't space with them for defensive play and she can't count on them for approaching in neutral. Even using them out of shield seems pretty finicky. She still has Nair at least, but that move has poor range and her awful aerial mobility really doesn't help with that.

Her specials are all actually really good in this game. Farore's Wind is a frame 6 OoS option and great recovery move, Phantom Slash is a good camping and pressure tool, Din's Fire is good for edgeguarding and occasionally forcing approaches and Nayru's Love is still the same annoying "get off me" tool it's always been. As good as they are though I don't think that fully makes up for not having safe aerials you can just throw out.

I'm still thinking about keeping her as a secondary / pocket character just because that Neutral B is a huge middle finger to Mega Man's kit.
Not a zelda main, but I play a lot against her (one of my sparring partners main zelda + an other one at locals), and I think you are right on this.

She is downright oppressive when you are forced to play her game and/or are a tall character (these are usually correlated). You can't give her too much room to breathe because otherwise Phantom gets stage control on half the stage. You can't projectile camp her because she has a reflector (note : unlike wolf, it beats mewtwo in a shadow ball ping pong game, ie she can reflect the ball twice) and if you do anything slightly laggy she can just teleport on you.
Then at the ledge you have randoms fire balls to bait airdodges, Phantom (I hate this move), and a good enough recovery to fish for random dair and make it back.
But if you try to fight her close, you have to play around Naryu which will beat pretty much everything if you don't bait it, anything unsafe on shield will be met with a kick/teleport out of shield, teleport is really difficult to edgegard (well it's technically easy to 2 frame, but she can just teleport on you or throw random fireballs/Phantoms to mix it up). Add reasonable grounded options (fsmash is beefy) and good throw combos, and you got a pretty annoying character to play against. Mewtwo VS Zelda feels like the dark souls of matchups (lol): it's technically doable (speeeeeeed), but if do any mistake you die/take 30% + lose stage control and gl hf to take it back. Ridley VS Zelda is a chore in neutral, but at least you don't die at 50 from a random kick at the ledge.

But what if the opponents has the tools to play a safe oppressive neutral? Someone like wolf or greninja, who can afford to press safe buttons in neutral, without leaving her the time to charge phantom. That's where her lack of safe aerials to throw around comes in, as well as her below average mobility and frame data. I might be a bit biased on this one as it's mostly based on personal experience (ie I haven't taken the time to watch any pro zelda vs wolf/gren match), but it really feels like she struggles to dictates the tempo of the match in those matchups.

She is probably fine as/with a secondary though. How is her matchup against swordies/palutena?
 
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if you do anything slightly laggy she can just teleport on you.
A friend I play a lot of friendlies with loathes Farore's Wind. I think he's just barely this side of calling it broken.

Is dthrow > bair true? I have an easy time getting sweetspots with it but IDK if it's a thing or just user error, e.g. bad DI or whatever.

And I never remember to use Phantom or Din's Fire when offstage, which is a pity now that I think about it.
 
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