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First Official 4BR Smash for Wii U Tier List

It is common for fighting game communities to create a tier list for their game as a source of reference and debate regarding the tournament viability of the cast. The Smash scene is no exception to this, and all games in the series have had a tier list posted to SmashBoards. More often than not, the website itself was instrumental to the creation of these lists, mainly through projects organized by the so-called Smash Back Room for each respective game.

Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS finds itself in the unique position of receiving patches, DLC characters and stages for more than a year after release, with two more characters still forthcoming. As a result of this, it made sense to hold off on tier list discussion until a period of relative stability came along. The current patch (1.1.3) left the majority of the cast relatively untouched and had Genesis 3 as a major showcase, so we chose this build as a foundation. With the recent launch of the 4BR, we were in a good position for the official tier list project to finally get underway.

The 4BR acknowledges that tier lists are often controversial and won't be perfect at the first iteration, if ever. We do, however, strive to study the game to the best of our ability and give a sincere opinion on the current state of affairs. As such, a tier list can be an important benchmark to look back on as the game progresses.

To illustrate this, compare the first and last tier lists for Brawl. Over the nearly 5 years separating the two, we saw the fall of top tier threats like King Dedede, R.O.B. and Mr. Game & Watch, the rise of supposed mid tiers like Captain Olimar and Zero Suit Samus and the blatant early misjudgment of Zelda's potential. Despite these major shifts, the majority of the cast did not end up that far from where they initially started.

Our community has pushed Smash 4 hard from day one, and we have more resources at our disposal than ever before, be it complete frame data, tutorials, or tournament footage. It will be interesting to see how this affects our accuracy in rating the cast, something only time will tell. All that being said, we are proud to present you the first official tier list for Smash Bros. for Wii U!

Procedure

In late December 2015, 4BR members were asked to distribute all 56 released characters across 20 tiers, with no differentiation within the same tier. Voters could place gaps wherever they wanted and there were no restrictions on the amount of characters in the same group. They had to assume play under the 1.1.3 patch with no custom moves allowed, while Miis had to be considered with their 1111 moveset only, in accordance with tournament reality at the biggest events. The 4BR at this moment has no official stance or recommendation on ruleset matters.

We agreed to let voting run until after Genesis 3, which would hopefully provide us with insights into especially the more recent additions to the cast, most notably Cloud. During the voting process, there was a separate topic for reasoning and discussion. We also asked a small group of non-members to submit a vote, in order to involve more people at the forefront of the metagame. We ended up with 53 votes, of which 34 were American and 19 were international.

These are the people who submitted a vote:

USA
Atlantic North: 12
Midwest: 8
Pacific West: 7
Southwest: 4
Atlantic South: 3

International
Europe: 8
Japan: 6
Canada: 3
Australia: 2

Note that we will not release individual votes, but any voter is free to share his own vote with the public. The most notable abstainee was @TSM ZeRo, who felt it was still too early for a tier list.

Results

@Shaya processed the votes and found these average placements, standard deviations and gaps between average placements for the cast:

Character | Average Placement | Standard Deviation | Gap
Sheik | 20.0 | 0.0 | 0.0
Zero Suit Samus | 19.46 | 0.708 | 0.538
Rosalina | 18.77 | 0.87 | 0.687
Ryu | 17.95 | 1.103 | 0.82
Pikachu | 17.86 | 1.065 | 0.099
Sonic | 17.83 | 1.269 | 0.021
Fox | 17.52 | 1.146 | 0.313
Mario | 17.51 | 1.108 | 0.014
Diddy Kong | 17.43 | 0.998 | 0.082
Meta Knight | 17.12 | 1.489 | 0.307
Villager | 16.52 | 1.614 | 0.597
Cloud | 16.5 | 1.657 | 0.023
Ness | 16.39 | 1.502 | 0.11
Captain Falcon | 15.16 | 1.767 | 1.228
Yoshi | 15.15 | 1.893 | 0.013
Luigi | 14.27 | 1.996 | 0.881
Dark Pit | 13.89 | 2.138 | 0.381
Pit | 13.88 | 2.308 | 0.006
Peach | 13.75 | 2.115 | 0.133
R.O.B. | 13.63 | 2.221 | 0.12
Wario | 13.56 | 1.898 | 0.067
Toon Link | 13.2 | 2.416 | 0.357
Lucario | 12.92 | 2.224 | 0.285
Olimar | 12.47 | 2.452 | 0.454
Greninja | 12.25 | 2.633 | 0.215
Ike | 12.12 | 2.425 | 0.126
Donkey Kong | 11.8 | 2.252 | 0.325
Mega Man | 11.41 | 2.159 | 0.386
Pac-Man | 11.29 | 2.278 | 0.124
Bowser | 10.81 | 2.66 | 0.477
Robin | 10.17 | 2.722 | 0.642
Roy | 9.29 | 3.209 | 0.883
Kirby | 9.1 | 3.388 | 0.183
Bowser Jr. | 8.93 | 2.671 | 0.176
Mr. Game & Watch | 8.72 | 2.47 | 0.21
Lucas | 8.65 | 2.993 | 0.071
Mewtwo | 8.35 | 2.666 | 0.297
Falco | 8.12 | 3.026 | 0.232
Wii Fit Trainer | 8.08 | 2.674 | 0.037
Shulk | 7.75 | 2.926 | 0.325
Marth | 7.72 | 2.237 | 0.038
Link | 7.47 | 2.474 | 0.249
Duck Hunt Dog | 7.18 | 3.11 | 0.283
Little Mac | 7.18 | 2.633 | 0.009
Dr. Mario | 7.14 | 2.437 | 0.033
King Dedede | 6.04 | 2.721 | 1.107
Lucina | 5.59 | 2.547 | 0.447
Mii Brawler | 5.01 | 2.952 | 0.584
Charizard | 4.79 | 2.255 | 0.218
Palutena | 4.78 | 2.199 | 0.008
Samus | 4.12 | 1.942 | 0.656
Mii Gunner | 3.6 | 2.153 | 0.525
Mii Swordsman | 3.32 | 2.054 | 0.282
Ganondorf | 3.23 | 1.675 | 0.082
Jigglypuff | 2.79 | 2.035 | 0.448
Zelda | 1.96 | 1.259 | 0.828

A standard deviation of (close to) 0 means that voters generally placed the character close to the mean, while a higher standard deviation means that the character had a larger range of placements. Most standard deviations are over 1, indicating that we are far from a consensus.

We considered all gaps over .50 as tier separation points and those above .75 for a change in label (Top, High, etc.). However, we decided against single character tiers and the C tier occupying a "High Mid" label with just two characters. Finally, we split F tier into two based on the largest difference within that group of 14 characters.

Official 4BR Smash for Wii U Tier List v1.0 (1.1.3 patch)

Top
S::4sheik::4zss::rosalina:

High
A::4ryu::4pikachu::4sonic::4fox::4mario::4diddy::4metaknight:
B::4villager::4cloud::4ness:

Middle
C::4falcon::4yoshi:
D::4luigi::4darkpit::4pit::4peach::4rob::4wario2::4tlink::4lucario:
E::4olimar::4greninja::4myfriends::4dk::4megaman::4pacman::4bowser::4robinm:

Low
F::4feroy::4kirby::4bowserjr::4gaw::4lucas::4mewtwo::4falco::4wiifit:
G::4shulk::4marth::4link::4duckhunt::4littlemac::4drmario:

Bottom
H::4dedede::4lucina:
I::4miibrawl::4charizard::4palutena:
J::4samus::4miigun::4miisword::4ganondorf::4jigglypuff::4zelda:

Text version:

S: Sheik, Zero Suit Samus, Rosalina & Luma
A: Ryu, Pikachu, Sonic, Fox, Mario, Diddy Kong, Meta Knight
B: Villager, Cloud, Ness
C: Captain Falcon, Yoshi
D: Luigi, Dark Pit, Pit, Peach, R.O.B., Wario, Toon Link, Lucario
E: Captain Olimar, Greninja, Ike, Donkey Kong, Mega Man, Pac-Man, Bowser, Robin
F: Roy, Kirby, Bowser Jr., Mr. Game & Watch, Lucas, Mewtwo, Falco, Wii Fit Trainer
G: Shulk, Marth, Link, Duck Hunt, Little Mac, Dr. Mario
H: King Dedede, Lucina
I: Mii Brawler, Charizard, Palutena
J: Samus, Mii Gunner, Mii Swordfighter, Ganondorf, Jigglypuff, Zelda

Graphic version:



Conclusion


The first year of Smash 4 has been an absolute rollercoaster, with players flocking from Bowser to Diddy Kong to Sheik to Luigi to Donkey Kong to Sheik again. With the completion of the cast on the horizon and the nerfs and buffs slowing to a halt, the game can be expected to come to full fruition in 2016. We can't wait to see the Smash 4 tier list evolve over the years as Smashers all over the world rise to the challenge -- and with them, their respective characters.

What do you think of the tier list? Would you have placed any characters differently? Let us know what your thoughts and questions are and we will try to address the most common ones in a followup article, which will also include a more in-depth analysis of the results with statements by 4BR members.

Major thanks go out to @Shaya for processing the votes, @Zigsta and @Liberation for helping with the release and @Xiivi, @Shaya, and @Camalange for collecting outside votes and various odds and ends. Finally, a shoutout to all the voters for their time and input. I was proud to spearhead this project and receive help from so many dedicated people.
 
Marc

Comments

Make a new tier list for after patch!!!
Cloud and Corrin are a tad bit too high on this list.[/QUOT maybe Corrin but cloud has a lot of options, a lot of speed and a decent recovery. Also falcon should be high tier because all his moves were buffed and he maintains his air attacks as welll as his speed
 
Marth/Lucina and Mewtwo are the only 3 that need a raise.
I don't think Lucina needs to go up... only Marth has been improving. The two are not the same character, for God's sake. But Mewtwo and Marth are definitely rising (especially the former, like I already said).
 
I don't think Lucina needs to go up... only Marth has been improving. The two are not the same character, for God's sake. But Mewtwo and Marth are definitely rising (especially the former, like I already said).
I never said they were the same.
 
This game was never balanced. LOL.
What's even worse is that Bayonetta is now the best character in the game, and Smash 4 is degenerating into Brawl because of her. I wouldn't be surprised to see Smash 4 die just like Brawl because of Bayonetta.
 
What's even worse is that Bayonetta is now the best character in the game, and Smash 4 is degenerating into Brawl because of her. I wouldn't be surprised to see Smash 4 die just like Brawl because of Bayonetta.
You must be a bandwagon fan.
 
What's even worse is that Bayonetta is now the best character in the game, and Smash 4 is degenerating into Brawl because of her. I wouldn't be surprised to see Smash 4 die just like Brawl because of Bayonetta.
I prefer to think Bayo is a rude awakening to those that think defensive play is bad... People need to realize that simply standing still is a great option in any fighting game, and that ultimately defense wins games. Defense wins any game.

There is a reason Meta Knight was banned, you know.
For about a month.

If we couldn't successfully ban the most OP character in Smash history, how do you expect to ban Bayonetta when she doesn't even have the best results out of any character in SSB4?
 
(a little late to this thread I know) I didn't think Fox was that high on the list, I guess there are a few things I need to learn about him.
 
Roy, Ike, Marth and Lucina are all way too low. Also maybe fox shouldn't be that high, he's got nothing but nerfs since the game came out. Also, cloud shouldn't be that high either. He should be in mid high with Fe characters. Other than that, it's good
 
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I'm glad Megaman ranked where he did, though I wish he was higher he really isn't. I main him only cuz, he's, well Megaman lol
 
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