Ike V Palutena MU


Smash Rookie
Apr 15, 2015
New York
I wanna know people's thoughts on the Ike v Palu MU.

I was holding a tourney at school where me and my friend entered. Neither of us really play sm4sh; we both play melee but we both used to play sm4sh a lot. I still play it a bit since it's more honest/relaxed than Melee and it's the only thing I can play against someone at home. My friend can't and therefore doesn't play it anymore.

We faced off in bracket, my Ike vs his Palutena. By then he remembered how to play the game again (he's also really really good at competitive games in general and has been playing them since forever). I ended up winning 2-1 but it felt almost unnecessarily difficult. I understand that I'm not exactly great but I'd been playing the game for 2-ish weeks prior and, while he IS really good at every game he plays, I don't feel like it should have been as difficult as it was despite his minimal practice in comparison to me.

Both character's playstyles are pretty honest, being dependent on grab combos for quick percent, reads or good edgeguards to get kills at good percents, and well placed aerials (bair being the best for both of them) for kills at a decent percent. However I feel like a good Palutena has the advantage when it comes to crucial aspects of the game.

With Ike's subpar recovery, Palu can gimp him with a counter (up b/occasional side b), cover with up smash (high side b), or gimp with an offstage aerial. This means much earlier kills for Palu than normal. Even if it gets to the point of +125%, she always has jab(optional) into dthrow uair/jc usmash for a kill confirm (or bait an airdodge and charge usmash for an earlier kill). Her air speed and quick aerials also make it difficult to challenge her in the air if she goes in for a follow up. Even if he can get a move out, she can wait it out. If he jumps, he just prolongs the inevitable since he doesn't have enough aerial drift to move out the way fast enough. If you airdodge, she can wait that out too.

Also, since Palu is kinda light, Ike loses almost all combo conversions after 60% besides uthrow fair, which can be done (at a tight-ish timing) until ~75% and reverse weak hit nair into bair until 65% ( which is very difficult to get. The only thing that's slightly reliable is f/bthrow tech chase and even then it can be tricky if you don't got a good read on the opponent. Laslty, her recovery is difficult punish unless you go for the 2 frame eruption (which I hadn't realized until after the match. Probably woulda made things easier)

Overall, to me it just boils down to "Both of these characters need things off of their grabs and honest kills to work, but Palutena's has some more tools to help her close things out easier"

Am I just being a salty prideful **** (tbh I more than likely am. I'm pretty sure Ike actually has the advantage) or do I have at least a bit of a point?


Smash Lord
Nov 25, 2014
You shouldn't be having many issues against Palutena. She's been considered bottom tier since release for a reason, y'know? Her spacing tools lose out to Ike's, as even her fastest spacing move, her Jab, is slower than Ike's own Jab and his Dtilt, and her kit can't really contest Ftilt either. Her grab combos are considerably less threatening, severely weakened by merely DIing away. Her Fair and Bair have decent speed, but have poor coverage so Ike has an easier time spacing in the air too since he can attack from varying angles while she has to line up her hits. Even though she has a counter to stop Aether with, she has nothing that could force you to recover low. And her lowish weight makes her a prime victim for Ike's wide arsenal of kill moves, whereas her only real options for killing are edgeguards and her laggy smashes, as she can't follow up her Dthrow with a kill move if you DI away and don't airdodge on reflex.


Smash Rookie
Nov 28, 2015
Yeah the Palutena matchup really isn't something Ike players should worry about. Ike's grab outranges hers and her being pretty light means most of Ike's kill moves and setups will kill her super early. It's not a completely one-sided matchup like say for instance Little Mac vs RosaLuma, but it's definitely in favor of Ike


Smash Cadet
Jun 10, 2014
One word: Spacing

Btw if you think the Palutena will jump, bait an airdodge for Uair, use nair and it'll send them up instead.
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