Improving my Ridley


Smash Champion
Jul 17, 2014
Canada, eh?
Hey guys,

I recently picked up Ridley as a secondary, as I really enjoy his combo game and think his aerials are a lot of fun. However, there's two aspects of the character I've been struggling with:

1. Getting K.Os: While Ridley's smash attacks are really powerful, I'm having trouble finishing stocks without the use of those moves. It feels like he doesn't have any other moves that fulfill this purpose. In particular, it feels nearly impossible to get a K.O off a grab, even at very high percents. Is there something I'm missing here, or am I simply not looking hard enough for good opportunities to use my Smash attacks?

2. Fighting opponents below me: Ridley seems to excel when he has an opponent above him. However, he can still put up a decent fight if both him and his opponent are grounded or both of them are in the air. However, he feels like a sitting duck when he's in the air and his opponent is grounded. Once this happens, getting him grounded is nearly impossible as any attempts to reach the stage are just asking to be met with an anti-air and a combo. As such, does anyone have any recommendations on how to transition from the air to the ground safely? N-Air seems to be okay at this, but it feels more useful for juggling than getting opponents off me. Likewise, D-Air can be a pretty decent mix-up to anyone waiting on the ground, but it's end-lag makes it very risky to be a consistently strong option.

Does anyone have any recommendations on how to improve my game in this regard?


Smash Journeyman
Jan 30, 2019
Raleigh, North Carolina
Switch FC
I'll take a try at giving some recommendations.

Ridley's killing options outside of his smashes typically are:

#1, back air. Use his back air a lot. Get good at spacing and timing it right. Many of my kills with Ridley are from his back airs, unless I get a smash read prior to them reaching back air kill percent range. His back air is extremely good, hits in a huge arc below and behind Ridley, and has a very generous and disjointed hitbox. It starts killing around 120+, depending on the character's weight and position on the stage. It's an excellent off-stage killing move as well, and will kill much sooner here, easily around 60-70 off-stage. Learn to use RAR back air as well. This reaches really far in front of Ridley and, when well-spaced and timed, can result in kills.

Probably #2, up air. This move kills surprisingly early, especially when your opponent is high up, and Ridley is good at getting people up in the air. His down tilt, up throw, up tilt, and side B all put your opponent into favorable positions to make use of this move. Make sure to land the move where the wing tip spike things hit your opponent, as the knockback this move does increases when you land the tipper. It can kill as low as 90-100, depending on character and how high they are above the stage.

Wing Blitz (up B) can also be a switch-up that can take your opponent off-guard. I sometimes kill with this when I know my opponent will be recovering high. If you can bait their air dodge / jump out or know they don't have these options, or know they are in a position where they cannot use these options, you can land up B kills. You can sometimes bait someone to air dodge by starting up an up B, and then tilting it sideways to hit them anyways.

Make sure you're chasing off-stage as well. Neutral and forward air kill very early when you land them off-stage, and they both have large, generous hitboxes. You should be landing a lot of kills chasing off-stage to finish the job, especially against opponents with limited or very predictable and challengable recovery options.

Around 120-150 or so, his Space Pirate Rush (side b) and forward tilt will start killing, but you probably want to have killed before these start kicking in.

150+, again, depending on character, up tilt, neutral air, and forward air start hitting kill ranges on many characters.

200+, neutral air and down tilt start killing, and I believe even a couple of Ridley's throws can kill here if near the stage edge, but you really don't want your opponent getting this high.

Getting juggled in the air is certainly something I have trouble with as well. A lot of characters have this problem, not just Ridley. Sometimes if you can bait and get your opponent to whiff an aerial attack on you, you can punish with a down air. Don't use down air to land. It's super-punishable. Sometimes I retreat to an edge to land as Ridley.
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Smash Rookie
Jan 8, 2019
+1 predaTORYAAAH ^^

killmoves: dashattack, backair, upair, uptilt 160%, ftilt at ledge, downsmash100% upsmash ~110+ish?%, NUCLEAR FSMASH 60% DELETION
if you struggle at killing, it's because you don't know your setups/what killmove to use at which percent
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