The Valkyrie are a lancer class servant from the increasingly ridiculous Fate franchise, appearing in Fate/Grand Order. A hivemind of war maidens designed to fight for the Allfather, Odin, they seek out worthy warriors to take to Valhalla to help fight alongside them against threats to the Norse Pantheon and the people they worship. Originally, they were an emotionless bunch, but then Brynhildr, the eldest Valkyrie, fell in love with Sigurd, and so the rest of the hivemind all began to feel emotions alongside her... and most of them have no idea how to deal with that properly yet. In Fate/Grand Order, the Valkyrie servant consists of three Valkyries that each become available by progressing an Ascension, going from the oldest and least advanced Valkyrie to the most modern and strongest one... though their animations are basically identical and they're the same in gameplay, so its kinda hard to tell in practice. Speaking of said animations, you can check them out here
The three Valkyries you get in the game are depicted in the above image. Thrud, the blonde one in the front, is the most recent model and has responded to having emotions by aggressively trying to suppress them and act like she doesn't have them. How well that's going for her is... up to debate. Hildr, the pink haired one, has largely just accepted her emotions and is a lot closer to a "normal person" amongst the strange robot girl hivemind of Valkyrie. As for Ortlinde, the black haired one, she's a lot more genuinely emotionless than the other two, starting to feel them but still at a point she hasn't learned quite how to process them yet. She's also the oldest and least efficient model of Valkyrie of the group.
In the main storyline, they're actually partially responsible for maintaining the second Lostbelt, a dying world where only a few thousand humans are kept alive, and routinely culled and used by the Valkyrie and their master in a bid to preserve the world long enough that they can fight off the omnipresent threat of Surtr and rebuild society. Unfortunately for them, preserving such a horribly decayed, pathetically small civilization against the fate of humanity just turns out not to be in anyone's best interests, forcing the timeline to be pruned. In that timeline, rather than serving Odin, they serve Skadi, the last remaining god in the Norse Pantheon desperately trying to hold the world together.
The Valkyrie have a pretty clear case of sameface going on, which is a genuine weakness of their artist, but it actually makes sense in this case because they're all similar members of the same hivemind. If you're asking why they share sameface with a bunch of unrelated characters too, that's uh. That's where the excuse breaks down but look it was clever for five seconds.
So before we get into the exact stats of each Valkyrie, the first point worth establishing ahead of time is that the Valkyries are effectively three echo fighters jammed into one set, one you'll be switching between throughout the match to get the most out of their abilities in a manner similar to Pyra/Mythra. That is to say, they all have the same moveset, but with differences in statistics and frame data, and a couple other small things you'll see throughout the set. But to start with qualities they share, every Valkyrie is about the same height, with Ortlinde being a tad shorter and Thrud being a tad taller, but not enough to make a significant differences in gameplay. For reference, Thrud's about Marth's height, so the other too are shorter than that by a not particularly important margin. The Valkyries are also all equipped with four jumps each, with different first jumps but their second, third, and fourth jumps are all small boosts into the air by flapping their wings like Meta Knight, which add a decent amount of height to their recovery and a lot of airtime.
Ortlinde, the oldest and least advanced model of Valkyrie, has a very middling set of stats. At a 1.8 dash speed and 1.16 air speed, Ortlinde's movement on the ground is decent, and her air speed is actually pretty high, but amongst the Valkyries neither stat is anything to write home about. With a weight of 96, she's a bit harder to knock off the blast zone than her light and floatly look would imply, because the Valkyries are actually one of the most longevity focused Lancers in the game! So she's not a total lightweight, although once again, not the best sister in that department. At 1.22 fall speed, she's also in the middle for Valkyries in terms of floatiness... which is to say they're all really, really floaty. Her first jump is pretty good and gets her decently high into the air, bolstering her recovery and airtime somewhat. Amongst the Valkyries, Ortlinde is not really the standout member of the team in terms of stats or her actual moveset, where she lacks the more extreme traits of her sisters... which kind of leaves her with the least useful niche on paper. That said, as an older piece of "technology", she's got a couple weird quirks that the more advanced models don't have that were taken out which are actually pretty helpful at times. And sometimes you just want a jack of all trades as Thrud and Hildr are both very flawed in their own rights.
Hildr is without a doubt the most extreme Valkyrie, perhaps due to being the most openly in touch with her emotions. However little that logic makes sense to you, she's the Valkyrie by far the least concerned with her durability, having only 63
weight and the worst first jump and Up Special of the group. Her recovery isn't bad, mind you, but its not what you'd hope for on a character this fragile, making switching to Hildr always a risk. She makes up for it other areas, at least. At 2.33 dash speed, she's one of the fastest characters in the game on the ground, and with 1.37 air speed, she has the
best air speed of the entire cast! While hardly a fast faller, she's got 1.4 fall speed which pushes her to the lower middle of the cast in that regard... and actually comes with a unique 80% fast fall modifier to let her get back to the ground a tad quicker too. In terms of how she actually fights, Hildr's a glass cannon, with good combo potential, great mobility, and high power, but hilariously fragile defenses that make her easy to deal with once the opponent gets into advantage state.
Thrud acts as the slow, heavy hitting Valkyrie of the team, which actually means Ortlinde is the one with the least power overall by a good margin. Her stats, similarly, are outright heavyweight-esque, with a quite respectable 110 weight to really show how durable the Valkyries can be when they want to be. She has an impressively high first jump, too, and all in all has exceptional survivability compared to her counterparts. She's also very floaty, with 1.16 fall speed, the second lowest in the game even if Jigglypuff's an outlier, which does kind of make her combo food. Though this is alievated a bit by her model not being particularly big. Her air speed is a middling 1.06, not impressive for a Valkyrie but overall fine, and her dash speed is a miserable 1.44, which gives her pretty miserable ground mobility... so hey, there is a perk to being so floaty at least! Compared to a lot of heavies, Thrud's power isn't really as impressive, but she makes up for it in safety, having less punishable than expected end lag, and some respectable tools for escaping disadvantage. If you want, you can kind of sit around as her for a while if you get to high percents to stall out your death, but she's very predictable on offense and probably won't score a lot of damage without the help of her sisters, and certainly not many KOs.
Point is, every Valkyrie has a time and a place they're at their most useful, from the middling but slightly unorthodox Ortlinde, to the glass cannon Hildr, to the outright tank Thrud. Not to mention there are some very real bonuses for swapping between them that we'll get to as the set goes on. You can pick which Valkyrie you want to start as on the character select screen, all three are visible in the portrait and can be selected between akin to how you would with Pokemon Trainer. They all have the same spear they use as a weapon, comparable in size to Marth's sword but just a bit longer.
As a final note for the rest of the moveset, Ortlinde's damage percentages and frame data will be in grey, Hildr's will be in red, and Thrud's will be in yellow.
Down Special - Valkyrie Swap
And here's your move that transitions between Valkyries, with a similar very quick transition period to the Pyra/Mythra form swap at 35 frames of total lag. The animation is a simple flash of light where the previous Valkyrie disappears and the new one takes its place, nothing flashy. Its a fast transition that makes it easy to switch to what Valkyrie you want to on the go, and it even has a little bonus quality of life compared to a character like Pokemon Trainer. While Valkyries have a default swap order that can be accessed by simply tilting Down Special of Ortlinde > Hildr > Thrud > Ortlinde, you can access an alternate swap order of Ortlinde > Thrud > Hildr > Ortlinde by smashing the input. This lets you switch to any other Valkyrie whenever you like!
There's a bit more to this move than that, mind you. You can charge this transition for half a second, the Valkyrie's aura glowing progressively brighter as you do. If you do pull that off, you have another half second to rapidly enter up to three attack inputs, as the old Valkyrie you were currently playing actually stays in! At the end of the half second of transition, the new Valkyrie you control spawns in above them by about Ganondorf height and very slightly behind the old Valkyrie. From there, the old Valkyrie will use the attacks you've input in quick succession, effectively providing cover fire for the new Valkyrie you're controlling. This Valkyrie sticking around to help briefly, from this point forward, will be referred to as the Assistant Valkyrie.
This has its upsides and downsides, because the Valkyries share a damage percentage due to being linked as a hive mind. And unfortunately, the Assistant Valkyrie staying out also takes damage, giving the foe two hurtboxes to work with at once. That said, the Valkyrie also has 8% worth of super armor before attacks can actually interrupt them out of their assault. So you can't just poke them out super casually with a Jab, which can be frustrating when the playable Valkyrie is pressuring you simultaneously. If an Assistant Valkyrie takes enough damage to break their super armor, they'll simply vanish in a flash of light after taking the hit, ending their aid.
This, along with the increased lag, makes the doubling up something you want to use when you manage to force an opening on the opponent rather than just throw out whenever. Even if you did want to spam this, there's an 8 second cooldown between uses of the charged version of this move, indicated by the portraits of the two Valkyries you're not using being dulled to a greyer shade that brightens up when the move comes off cooldown. The power of two desynced attacks at once, however, is something that time and time again has proven incredibly effective in fighting games, and the Valkyries make good use of it. Hildr and Thrud cover each other's weaknesses rather well, and Ortlinde's gimmicks tend toward giving the other Valkyries a boost... plus if you just want to double up on Thrud or Hildr's best qualities Ortlinde can do it better than their opposite can.
Neutral Special - Nova
The Valkyrie rises a short distance into the air as light radiates off their body, growing rapidly in intensity until it shines so brightly it burns the opponent for 3 hits of 3%, 3%, and 12%
, 3 hits of 5%, 5% and 17%
, and 3 hits of 4%, 4%, and 22%
respectively. This deals knockback that KOs at 115%
, and 50%
depending on which Valkyrie you're using, with Thrud and Hildr obviously being much better at KOing with this move. This is a bit more varied between Valkyries than just in damage and knockback, however, as the radius of the light also changes. Ortlinde's covers an area about as 1.4x as big as Bowser around herself, Hildr's is actually a bit on the small size and covers an area a bit smaller than Bowser, and Thrud's covers a whopping 2x Bowser sized blast radius! The light's color also depends on your Valkyrie, Ortlinde using a pretty standard white light, Hildr having a bright pink light, and Thrud's being a vibrant gold. While the Valkyrie will stall in the air on her first use of this move in the air, on subsequent uses she will continue to fall(at a slightly decreased rate) during the animation, preventing using this to hover away from the stage obnoxiously for too long.
While Thrud is seeming like the exemplar Valkyrie here, we haven't gotten into the frame data yet, and its bad for everyone. The move takes 45 frames
, 33 frames
, and 95 frames
of start lag depending on which Valkyrie you're using, meaning Ortlinde and Hildr's variants can certainly land off a hard read, whereas Thrud's is really only going to land under some very specific circumstances. While very predictable, you can try to edgeguard with it, you can land it off a shield break, and you can use it to apply terrifying amounts of pressure when two Valkyries are attacking at once. There are some invincibility frames to make these moves a bit more useful, Ortlinde getting her's on the last 15 frames of the start lag
, Hildr only gets the last 8 frames
, and Thrud gets a whopping 45 frames
where she's invulnerable. Plus while Ortlinde and Thrud have modest end lag they can easily transition out of if the opponent got out of your face, Hildr is not so lucky, having painful end lag after this move that is easily punished.
Nova's role in the Valkyries' kit is honestly a pretty simple one, its a move basically designed to be used alongside swapping your Valkyrie to provide a big, scary hitbox the opponent wants to avoid. Thrud has the biggest and scariest one, but its not easy to land even if you or the Assistant Valkyrie you left behind to help you are pressuring the foe into it, but it does cover a huge swath of space and can easily zone the foe out, and gives the highest reward if you do combo the foe into it. Hildr can actually kind of use this move on her own without help, as 33 frames of start lag is a hard read but the radius is still decent sized and the power is astronomical. You just really cannot afford to whiff it... though given its invincibility frames activate the fastest, however brief they are, its the best move for powering through an enemy Smash attack of the three when you do pull it off.
Ortlinde's variant is probably the easiest to use is combination with one of her sisters, with both a larger radius and less punishability if used by the player rather than the pre-programmed sister on their way out. The reward is definitely the lowest at face value, but you can get a little more out of it because it has one of Ortlinde's gimmicks. See, in her case, the light will actually stay on the foe, leaving them glowing for 7.5 seconds after they get hit by this move. This applies a debuff to the foe that causes them to take 1.3x as much damage from all attacks to them, with the same knockback applied as if they were at their normal percent. This can result in you netting the highest amount of damage off this version if you land some good combos afterwards... and also, that "no knockback modifier" bit only applies to attacks that deal 12% or less. Ones that deal more than that get a 1.1x knockback modifier on top of the boost from damage, so it can actually lead to some pretty impressively early kills for Hildr and Thrud, on top of high damage combos in Hildr's case. What it lacks in baseline power, it makes up for in utility.
Making the best use of Nova and Assistant Valkyries together requires some quick thinking on the player's part. The easiest way to work with it is to delegate the use of Nova to the Assistant Valkyrie, to deny a big section of the stage and potentially pressure the foe into it with your main Valkyrie. That said, you can more strategically position and time your Nova if you're in control of the Valkyrie using it, so with a bit of tricky play you can sandwich the foe in an inconvenient position between the two Valkyries and then purge them with light from a much more optimal angle and timing. You can even double up on Novas if one Valkyrie is about to transition into additional attacks while the other begins their Nova, a risky strategy but one that can double up on your chances to land a Nova on transition by scoring a shield break after the foe blocks the first Nova or with clever pressure out of the first Nova into a second one!
Side Special - Primeval Rune
A light shines down upon the Valkyrie, a slight rainbow effect glinting off their spear. They then swoop forward almost instantly with their spear out, floating slightly off the ground with their wings, before stabbing it at an upwards angle at the end. This goes forward a little more than a Battlefield Platform in width for Ortlinde and Thrud, and a little less than a Battlefield Platform in width for Hildr, and the movement goes up at a 20 degree angle in the air but puts the Valkyrie into helpless. This has 14 frames
, 8 frames
, and 17 frames
of start up lag respectively, and deals 7%
, and 12%
during the actual rush. Ortlinde deals some moderate upward knockback on her rush that scales poorly, Hildr's deals a flinch that gives her an actual frame disadvantage on hit, and Thrud's upward knockback will actually scale to kill at 175%. The sweetspot is the spear thrust at the end, which deals 11%
, and 18%
respectively with upwards knockback that KOs at 200%
, and 100%
. All three variants have punishable end lag if they whiff, with Thrud having the least end lag and Hildr having the most, but its dangerous to whiff the move on any of them.
For all three Valkyries, this is a pretty good tool for catching out foes at a range with the near instantaneous movement, but its power is pretty dependent on its sweetspot. If you hit with the body of this move, you're getting pretty minimal reward with Ortlinde for the lag/risk involved and outright hurting yourself as Hildr as the foe will likely hit you back harder than you hit them. The good news is that the hitbox size of the actual thrust at the end of the move is pretty generous, and if you're playing Thrud you get both a less punishable bout of end lag and a pretty good hitbox throughout the entire move. In exchange, her lag is plenty reactable so its harder to catch foes out with the sweetspot compared to the others. When you have out an assistant Valkyrie pressuring the foe, this move is great for rushing in behind them at an inconvenient window for the opponent's counteroffensive or defenses. Its something its good at on all Valkyries, but for Hildr its particularly nice given the very low start lag makes this move very hard to react to properly.
The light shining down on the Valkyrie is not actually just cosmetic, its indicative of Odin/Skadi's blessing up on that Valkyrie(its up to interpretation at the end of the day). If the Valkyrie lands the sweetspot of this attack, the blessing will actually stick around after the move, as the light remains shining on the Valkyrie for their next 3
, or 2 attacks
. Ortlinde, getting the most out of this gimmick, even gets a bonus for a single attack if she lands the sourspot! In game, this effect buffs Quick cards, so in Smash it improves the Valkyries' agility when recovering from an attack, taking a swifter, smoother and light imbued animation to their end lag on any given attack. This cuts the end lag of any given attack by 0.6x, give or take a couple frames depending on the move.
While Ortlinde's version of the move is the worst version of this move in terms of functioning as an actual attack, its still plenty worth going for with her for the sake of the buffs it provides her... and for that matter both of the other Valkyries! See, if you switch Valkyries while the buff is active, the new Valkyrie gets the buff. Given Hildr has the most end lag-related struggles and the fact she has the worst blessing reward, this is an extra incentive to switch to another Valkyrie and then back to Hildr to let her go crazy spamming her high power, high speed, but punishable kit if you landed the sweespot with Ortlinde! Thrud and Ortlinde can still make good use of this mechanic on their own too, Thrud becoming frustratingly hard to punish and Ortlinde getting a considerable boost to her combo potential, so if you don't want to rusk Hildr's low weight there is a backup option. Hildr doesn't really need to gain the buff for the move to be useful for her anyway, being able to just kill a foe from frame 8 a platform away is enough reward on its own, especially since she does get a single buffed attack afterwards.
Landing this move a second time while the buff is already in place will simply refresh the number of blessed attacks to whatever amount that Valkyrie provides, or not expend one if the Valkyrie would give you less blessed attacks than you currently have stored up. If an Assistant Valkyrie lands this move, it'll refresh in the same way it would if the main Valkyrie hit it, the blessing shifting over to the one you're controlling after the hit lands. Lastly, I shouldn't have to tell you that combining this with an Assistant Valkyrie is some very, very powerful pressure, but considering the telegraph of an assisted Valkyrie Swap and the fact that you get a very small number of boosted attacks, it probably should be.
Up Special - Ride of the Valkyries
Spreading their wings behind them and holding their spear beneath them, the Valkyrie jets off in a direction you can freely choose on the control stick, followed by a second one which you can pick the direction of akin to Pikachu's Quick Attack. The way this move varies between Valkyries is a bit unique, as they all have a 21 frame start up as they get into position for it, but they each get different payouts for that admittedly somewhat lengthy startup.
To start with Hildr, as Ortlinde has a slightly more unorthodox variant, she only travels about 0.6x the distance Quick Attack goes per movement, but deals a respectable 6% and weak knockback in the direction she's traveling that only scales by a very tiny amount, noticeable at about 50% intervals. Despite the move's lackluster range, it does have one thing going for it: the landing lag is extremely short, making this move easy to combo off if you end it on the ground! Combined with the varied angles of approach you can take, this can make for a pretty solid approach due to the quick movement mixups it offers and the fact that you can immediately go into Jab for some pretty respectable combo strings out of it. The range leaves a bit to be desired though, and it does mean Hildr's recovery is the least impressive of the Valkyries. Mind you, its still really good, but its not borderline unbeatable like the recoveries of Thrud and Ortlinde.
Thrud's recovery actually goes 1.25x as far as quick attack with each movement, which is actually straight up ridiculous recovery distance for a move that's coming off a character with 4 jumps. She deals 12% and knockback at a high diagonal angle on contact that kills at 210%, mostly because the angle isn't great for killing, but it does get her good space. The downside is, admittedly, that the move actually has a decent amount of lag between the first and second movements, so it does make the move significantly more predictable as an approaching option, and punishable if the foe is close or has a convenient projectile for punishing as the landing lag is quite bad, she's best off snapping to a ledge with this move if she can unlike Hildr. It does have the decency to go past shields, however, a luxury it should be noted Hildr and Ortlinde's Up Specials do not have.
Ortlinde's has the interesting benefit of having three movements compared to Pikachu's 2, but each goes as far as Hildr's Up Special does individually and only deals 4% and knockback similar to what Hildr's deals. Ortlinde also has enough landing lag that she's not going to combo off this, though its not super punishable to land out of it either. By comparison to Thrud and Hildr, Ortlinde's recovery is the actual hardest one to respond to as she makes two rapid turns, ducking and weaving around any attempt for the opponent to intercept her recovery. This is partially notable for Ortlinde because it makes gimping attempts with her aerials very safe because of how easily she can get back to the stage around any obstruction from the opponent, the sole worry being the 21 frames of startup her recovery has. And that is bad, but with 4 jumps, you can at least reasonably work around it, though the move unfortunately lacks much offensive utility as Hildr's or even Thrud's, which at least deals respectable damage and gets the foe out of your face for a minute to set up a flashier play.
Up Special can be handy for spacing an Assistant Valkyrie around, requiring some very fast fingers to use properly as you'll need to put in the extra directional inputs(which aren't counted towards the three input total) in the same time period. But the reward is pretty worthwhile if used properly, allowing you to mix up the position of your Assistant Valkyrie pretty hard and in the case of Hildr set up some very formidable combos. Ortlinde in particular you can move to an unexpected and horribly inconvenient spot for the foe in a pattern that's very hard to predict with her three movements, making it much harder for foes to dodge the subsequent combo or Nova setup. While Thrud probably gets the least mileage out of this move as an Assistant Valkyrie, she can cover a very large chunk of the stage in a decently potent hitbox while repositioning herself, which can do its fair share of work in setting up flashier plays for Ortlinde or Hildr.
Jab - One Two Three
The Valkyrie performs a top to bottom sweep with their lance, followed by a bottom to top sweep, and then a more forceful second top to bottom sweep with both hands on the lance. A slightly modified version of one of the Valkyrie quick animations, the three hits deals 4%, 3%, and 5%
, 2%, 2%, and 6%
, and 5%, 4%, and 7%
depending on which Valkyrie you're playing. The first hit comes out on Frame 3
, and 9
respectively, and regardless of Valkyrie the hits link together safely. This move is also pretty safe regardless of which Valkyrie you're playing, but its especially so with Ortlinde when this move has pretty impressive range for a Jab and it comes out on Frame 3.
As for the reward, on Ortlinde and Thrud there's no point in stopping before the final hit if you land it, and in Thrud's case this even applies on Shield as Thrud's Jab deals a bit of extra shield stun to let the hits link together! As an assistant Valkyrie or with the help of one, this can lead to some pretty juicy Shield Break setups into Thrud's incredibly powerful Nova, so its not something to be underestimated. The final hit doesn't confirm many true combos aside from Fair at low percents for Ortlinde, and has zero true combos for Thrud because the knockback is too high for that. That said, Thrud's knockback is at a somewhat lower angle that, while not low enough to cause techs, sets up quite well for Side Special. Keep in mind its a considerably more slower move though, one foes can certainly weave around or beat in neutral. Hildr's variant isn't as safe Ortlinde's or as impactful and good at shield pressure as Thrud's, to the point it leaves room for a light punishment if it gets shielded. That said, the second hit in Hildr's combo has lower end lag and can confirm into some grounded combos off its flinching knockback, while the third hit has higher combo potential than Ortlinde's into aerials! This gives her a pretty nice set of branching options out of this move with her Nair/Fair off hit three and FTilt/DTilt/Dash Attack off hit two, though keep in mind the delay you need to take to go back to Jab one means you're not going to be getting any dumb Jab loop nonsense like this.
For the sake of actually being able to get mileage out of Jab with the Valkyrie Swap and to not force players to have to mash A a billion times, a single A press will have the assistant Valkyrie perform all three hits of the Jab combo. I shouldn't need to tell you why linking three hits together on the foe pretty much automatically is good while you're controlling another Valkyrie, and Thrud's has the aforementioned benefit of wrecking shields. This is one of your go to moves for an Assistant Valkyrie, but you probably shouldn't repeat the same move too much when there's the 30 frame telegraph before the both Valkyries can start attacking, as opponents are given more than enough time to prepare for it if you're predictable.
Forward Tilt - Guarded Assault
The Valkyrie performs a quick swing of their shield in front of them, followed by a forward stab with their lance, the lance glowing slightly on the stab. The shield slam hits on Frame 9
, or 11
and deals a consistent 5% regardless of your choice of Valkyrie. The stab deals 6%
, and 10%
depending on Valkyrie and confirms out of the bash regardless of percent, and Ortlinde's combos into her Fair until decent percents. For Hildr the knockback scales faster so it only combos into Fair briefly, but given Hildr's Fair is quite powerful the smaller window is entirely warranted. Thrud's not comboing into anything, but she can kill with this move around 160%, and it can be a fair bit lower at the ledge.
The shield actually provides the Valkyrie with a bit of armor while they're swinging it, but how much depends on the Valkyrie. Ortlinde gets 10% heavy armor from frames 6-12
of the move, Hildr gets 8% heavy armor for frames 4-7
, and Thrud gets 16% heavy armor from frames 5-15.
Hildr barely gets any extra defense from this move and 8% armor being pretty easy to punch through, while for Thrud its actually quite easy to use this to power through enemy attacks and hit them back for a respectable 15% total. Ortlinde's armor lets the move beat out other melee moves a bit more easily than it otherwise would, but its not particularly hard to break through and and still covers a small window of the move's startup. That said, if you DO manage to intercept a foe's attack with it, Ortlinde's lance glows more intensely on the second hit, dealing 13% and knockback that KOs at 100%! The window to pull this off is small and you need to intercept a weak move to do it, but that's pretty ferocious for a move that's meant to be thrown out casually in neutral due to its defensive properties. One of your better rewards for sticking around with Ortlinde in spite of her slightly lackluster power elsewhere.
Like Jab, if you use this move for an Assistant Valkyrie, they'll always perform both hits of the combo. One thing to keep in mind with those move, however, is that the range on the shield bash is bad, and it takes quite a bit for the actual stab to come out given you have to go through said shield bash first. This hurts the move's utility in neutral a bit, as while defensively its good(or mediocre on Hildr), the lack of range makes it a bit hard to combo into barring a couple specific Hiildr or Assistant Valkyrie setups and also makes it pretty easy to defend against itself.
Up Tilt - Shield Bash
The Valkyrie shoves her shield up over her head in a quick upwards bash, coming out on Frame 6
, or 8
depending on which Valkyrie you have out, with heavy armor that blocks hits of up to 12%
, or 18%
from frame 3 up through the duration of the hitbox. It deals 6%
, or 9%
with weak upwards knockback that for Ortlinde and Hildr sets up Nair and Uair, while for Thrud it really only sets up Uair which isn't a true combo out of it either. The lack of range is made up for with this move by its ability to power through aerials, converting the opponent's approach into your own combo, and while "own combo" might be a bit generous with Thrud, she at least benefits from having a larger armor window and greater damage on the actual hitbox.
Hildr actually gets her own little bonus on the move that makes it both less safe and an even better combo tool. She actually hops up into the air about half her own height during this move, considerably increasing the range... at the cost of making it less capable of intercepting short hop-based aerial approaches, only really able to knock foes out of one higher up in the air. In exchange, it goes from a short range counteroffensive tool to being a far better offensive option. Ortlinde's Up Tilt is middle of the road as always, but she has the highest potential reward out of Nair, so at least what it leads into gives it some advantages over Hildr's version.
Down Tilt - Low Sweep
The Valkyrie sweeps their spear low to the ground, with good reach and shield poke potential that comes out on Frame 7
, or 12.
This pops the opponent up into the air for Ortlinde and Hildr and deals 8%
, with Hildr having slightly better ability to convert off of it due to lower end lag. Its not a great combo move either way, mostly just serving as another Fair setup with less damage of its own and a smaller window to combo into it than FTilt, in exchange for being longer ranged and less predictable while going under shields. Hildr definitely appreciates having a tool to pop opponents out of shields as she can struggle with them a bit, and between the range and the lag this isn't a particularly punishable move for either of the two.
Thrud has the most exciting variant of this move, because its actually her combo tool, and a surprisingly good one! See, Thrud's Down Tilt actually deals upwards and inwards knockback, and also deals a respectable 10%.
It combos into Thrud's Up Tilt/Nair early and can also situationally go into Uair/Bair at certain percents or with mixups. It can also be used by an Assistant Thrud to throw opponents into your currently controlled Valkyrie, or Thrud to throw an opponent backwards into a Nova or a Smash behind her. Given how Thrud's actually pretty good at shield pressure, the opponent's shield will struggle to stay at full health against her, meaning she has some of the best opportunities of the trio to capitalize on the shield poking properties too!
Ortlinde's variant actually has a bit of light magic flare across the floor a short distance past the edge of her spear, which is extremely flat
against the stage and only deals 3% and a flinch. Ortlinde won't have much luck comboing into anything off of it... until pretty high percents where the knockback will start popping the opponent up, giving her a late combo starter out of her sourspot! It also shield pokes even better than the other versions, needing only the slightest bit of chip to sneak under the opponent's shield and adds a little range. Its more situational than the benefits of Thrud's version, but when the foe's at higher percents its sneakily useful.
Dash Attack - Stand Aside
The Valkyrie stops their dash to perform a rather dramatic forward swing of their lance, coming out on Frame 16
, or 15
, and deals 13%
, or 16%
and knockback that KOs at 155%
, or 135%
. Due to the heavy horizontal angling of this attack, those percentages get considerably better near the ledge, and the move bursts the Valkyrie forward a half battlefield platform length during the start lag. The end lag is a bit annoyingly long, and particularly punishable for Hildr, but its a respectable KO move that comes out earlier than most of your other options for a kill. This is compounded by the fact that it and Side Special actually cover for each other a bit. Dash Attack's sudden burst of movement and slightly exaggerated sweep lets it cover the area that would serve as the sourspot of Side Special quite nicely, letting the Valkyries passively threaten an entire battlefield platform sized zone in front of them between their two movement options. While for Thrud and Ortlinde, this stuff is all reactable so its not too
scary, Hildr has unreactable KO moves covering an entire battlefield platform in front of her, forcing foes to rely on predicting her and making her mere presense a lot scarier. If she screws up she gets punished big time, but that's the price you pay for this level of passive threat at high percents.
Ortlinde's version seems obviously the worst from a pure number's standpoint, but it does have one neat little trick going for it over the other versions. Rather than just charging in, Ortlinde will actually weave back before darting forward, letting her move out of the way of attacks directed at her during a dash and swoop in to hit the foe out of their move! This gives Ortlinde a sort of "dodge + attack" move that counters moves that would break through her guard on FTilt, and actually means the attack covers a little area behind where she started the dash attack, letting her surprise people who try to back roll behind her! Having yet another move like this emphasizes that while Ortlinde might be outmodded in terms of actual power by her counterparts, she has enough weird tricks to mess with an opponent both in neutral and while she's approaching to keep her a viable option, just to mix up the people who were used to the more conventional Valkyrie patterns. It can certainly get inside the opponent's head that they have to react differently to Dash Attack coming off Ortlinde compared to the other two, after all.
Forward Smash - Impale
Pulling back with some slightly dramatic wind up and an intense glow on their spear, the Valkyrie stabs forward, light flaring off the end of the spear as an outright extension of the already quite long reaching thrust! This comes out on Frame 20, 16, or 23 depending on which Valkyrie you're using, with three different hitboxes. The body of the spear deals 9%-13% (KOs at 180%-150%)
, 14%-20% (KOs at 130%-95%)
, and 16%-22%(KOs at 120%-80%)
, while the head of the spear deals 19%-26%(KOs at 80%-45%)
, 18%-25%(KOs at 105%-65%)
, and 20%-28%(KOs at 95%-55%)
respectively. The light past the spearhead deals 13%-19%(KOs at 150%-100%)
, 5%-7%(KOs at irrelevant percents)
, and 10%-14%(KOs at 170%-130%)
. The knockback is all within 10 degrees of a 30 degree diagonal, with Hildr/the Light having higher angles and the Thrud/the spear tip having lower angles, but its all lower angled knockback aimed at killing off the side.
Now that's a lot of numbers to hit you with at once, so let's break down the implications of them. Thrud is the heavy hitter of the bunch, with her entire spear being a capable kill move and even the light sourspot being respectable. She also has the least end lag of the three, and deals some extra shield damage and push with this move, making it hard to punish against both dodges and shields to make up for her bad start lag. Hildr's entire spear is a capable KO move, not to the same degree as Thrud's, but she makes up for it by having 7 less frames of start lag... although the sourspot is pretty terrible on this one, meaning Hildr doesn't get to take advantage of this move's extra range as much as the others do. She also has the worst end lag, making her quite punishable, though its just low enough that the foe's options to respond become shockingly limited if she's got a blessing. Actually, it puts her in the unique position to be able to combo off the light sourspot, which turns her from having a pretty useless extra hitbox to being able to utilize the extra range of this move to a different and potentially devastating effect!
Ortlinde really has to make use of this move's range to get full mileage out of it, as any hit that's not either the(admittedly somewhat generous) tipper is very lackluster for the lag. That said, 80% is a pretty nasty KO percent, and she has by far the best light hitbox barring a blessing on Hildr as it should still get the foe out of your face with a respectable amount of damage. Ortlinde's version is the one you'll get the most mileage out of in an Assistant Valkyrie scenario, as the slightly specific hitbox becomes much easier to pull off when you have another Valkyrie zoning the foe out or locking them down in hitstun. All three versions are respectable kill moves that get full mileage out of the range of a Valkyrie's spear and then some, though,
Up Smash - Odin's Light
Looking up to the sky and spreading their wings, the Valkyrie fires a wave of light upwards, with a glowing point like a star at the center of it. This is a bit like Lucas' Up Smash mixed with Snake's, with the Lucas part really being the main hitbox, we'll get to the Snake part as we go. The initial wave of light covers a decent sized spherical hitbox above the Valkyrie that deals 17%-24%
, or 21%-29%
and upwards knockback that KOs 100%-60%
, and 75%-50%
respectively. It comes out on Frame 22
depending on your Valkyrie and the hitbox actually lingers for a solid 25 frames, but depletes in power to only half the damage and knockback that won't kill until the mid-200%'s even for Thrud after the initial hitbox. The end lag after this hitbox fades is not actually all that bad, but in conjunction with the duration this is absolutely a move you will be punished for whiffing, but its long duration is great for catching out air dodges and its good range makes it respectable against enemy aerials. Still, the start lag and duration make this a move you really can't throw out super casually.
With all that said, the Snake's Up Smash component does come in after the move ends in a somewhat unique way. The star of light will be launched up out of the light wave and slowly descend back to earth as a weak hitbox that deals 2% and a small flinch on contact. The light disappears after it hits the foe and the flinch is more just useful for interrupting attacks than as a combo extender with how few frames it stuns the foe, but Hildr and Ortlinde will occasionally extend a combo with it. It takes about a second and a half for the star to descend from its peak of about 1.5 Ganondorf heights above the Valkyrie to ground level, fizzling out either on the floor or if it lands in the air at the same height where the Valkyrie's feet were planted on the ground.
This weird little hitbox isn't much to talk about on its own, but it detonates when hit by one of the Valkyrie's attacks! There's some hitlag on contact with it before it bursts into a cone of light in the direction of the knockback of the attack that hit it! It deals 8%-20% and knockback that KOs at 210%-80% based on the power of the attack that hit it, attacks that deal less than 5% causing the 8% hitbox and attacks that deal more than 24% causing the 20% hitbox, to give an idea of the power range. The knockback is always upwards angled but with a horizontal tilt based on the horizontal angle of the attack that hit it and subsequent cone of light. Also, multi-hit attacks that come out in rapid enough succession such as Forward Aerial(we'll get to it, but its a rapid stabbing kind of move) will deal all their hits to the star before it explodes! The cone of light ranges in size from half Bowser's width to Bowser's width depending on the strength of the move that hit it, so its a pretty big blast for opponents to worry about.
This more or less gives the Valkyries a way to extend their hitboxes, wear through shields and dodges, and generally make more out of their big power hits than they would otherwise. You can use this to extend Forward Smash, for example, to have even greater range and catch most spot dodge attempts on it, getting the most out of the scary tipper hitbox by adding a sizeable cone of light to it. You do have to go through the lengthy Up Smash to get it, but its a pretty scary hitbox for foes to worry about.
This move gets really crazy in conjunction with an Assistant Valkyrie. You don't need me to tell you just how easy it is to activate to cone of light when another Valkyrie is throwing out hitboxes on top of the one using Up Smash, able to activate it much earlier and from a wider and more unpredictable arrange of angles than before, all while the other Valkyrie can go into their own string of attacks! Its pretty potent stuff, and frankly, even the actual hitbox is really good with an Assistant Valkyrie before the star comes out. 25 frames of duration is a huge period for the Up Smash to just wall off part of the air, and the early hitbox is an extremely potent move to combo the foe into with a large blast radius. Think of it kind of like a less powerful, more versatile alternative to Nova...
Oh, speaking of Nova. If you hit the star with Nova specifically, it will explode in a copy of that Nova centered on the star, allowing you to effectively double up on Novas. I should not need to tell you how potent this is, but its insanely predictable for one Valkyrie to go for and Thrud flat out cannot do it on her own when her Nova has 90 frames of start lag. But the foe will take all the hits of the one Nova before getting hit by the second where the two hitboxes overlap, effectively doubling the damage it deals in the place where the two Novas overlap, while also increasing the size of the hitbox a pretty considerable amount even beyond that. This can let Thrud cover an area 3x the size of Bowser in a giant death hitbox, the central Bowser sized area of it dealing 60% and knockback that KOs at 20%, while Thrud and Ortlinde's attacks come out fast enough they can actually kind of be weaved into strings between the two Valkyries rather than just threatening that hitbox. Like yeah, Up Smash and Nova are both laggy enough its not a very natural feeling string, but you'll still have parts of it where both Valkyries can apply other pressure. As a final note, if you get the overlapping hitboxes of two Ortlinde Novas, the opponents debuff is actually doubled in strength, causing them to take 1.6x damage and, if the base damage of the attack is over 12%, 1.2x knockback on top of that. It won't kill as early as the other double Novas but it sure will leave the opponent in a situation any random Hildr combo will probably just kill them at that point!
Down Smash - Perimeter Sweep
Holding her shield out in front of her, the Valkyrie sweeps their spear around in front of and then behind them, the spear's glow intensifying on the backwards part of the sweep. The shield goes up on Frame 7
, or 6
, and the actual sweep comes out on Frame 15
, or 17
respectively. The sweep deals 10%-14% (KOs at 220%-180%)
, 14%-19%(KOs at 140%-100%)
, or 16%-22%(KOs at 125%-90%)
on the front hit and 19%-26%(KOs at 90%-55%)
, 18%-25%(KOs at 100%-60%)
, or 17%-24%(KOs at 110%-70%)
on the back hit. This knockabck is always at a high diagonal, not purely vertical but basically always KOing off the top blast zone if it does kill. The shield being held up gives 15% heavy armor
, 10% heavy armor
, or flat out super armor
on the front of the Valkyrie. This move doesn't have particularly bad end lag, Hildr's being a bit worse as usual, but the duration due to the slight delay between the two sweeps does make it a pretty punishable move to whiff.
Down Smash holds an interesting dual purpose in the Valkyrie's set, serving as both a punisher move for misplaced aggression and also rolls behind them. Hildr's is the specialized towards the punisher aspect, coming out quicker and actually having more power on the back hit than Thrud's version despite that. Thrud's sweep barely gets stronger on the back hit, but with full super armor from frames 6-17, its a pretty scary way to intercept opponent's assaults in neutral with a counterhit that has respectable kill power. And Ortlinde excels at both, in part because her back hit is actually the strongest of the three Valkyries so she punishes back rolls the hardest. The other part is, if the opponent strikes her shield, the front hit becomes as strong as the back hit, similarly to the boost she gets if foes strike her shield on FTilt. Admittedly, the front hit is pretty bad if you're Ortlinde and not really where you'd want your Down Smash to be, but having one technique that responds to both offense and sneaky rolls makes this move a very useful if risky neutral tool in winning predictions.
For a couple bonus uses of this move, the front and back coverage on a Valkyrie is pretty useful in an Assistant Valkyrie setup, as you aren't guarunteed what side of your Assistant Valkyrie the opponent will be if they manage to evade their initial assault. Down Smash can catch out an opponent behind them while still pressuring an opponent in front of them, and can even potentially punish a foe trying to aggressively remove them with the super armor and counterhit. Its also worth mentioning that since you have a good attack to counter back rolls, if the opponent wants to roll away from you that's one of the best scenarios to pull off Side Special. That's a particularly easy read to make with Hildr and her 8 frame Side Special, so Down Smash's ability to scare off back rolls against her is quite useful there.
Neutral Aerial - Spear Spin
The Valkyrie spins a spear in a circle around herself, with pretty respectable coverage that only misses covering the bottom of their hurtbox by a small amount. This move comes out on Frame 7
, or... 3
in the case of Thrud, a rarity for her. That's because Thrud actually spins the spear twice on her Nair, a swifter starting spin followed by a stronger spin designed to knock foes away! This deals 8%
, and 3% followed by 9%
, with Hildr's dealing it mostly horizontal knockback, Ortlinde's dealing knockback on a medium diagonal, and Thrud's dealing knockback at a high diagonal. In Hildr and Ortlinde's case, the knockback is enough that they can potentially chain a couple Nairs together through use of their jumps, Hildr's dealing low enough knockback she can even do some light "Nairplaning". She has a bit too much end lag to immitate the likes of Palutena, but that's probably a good thing because Palutena isn't equipped with 4 jumps, Hildr actually being able to do longer strings than her with good reads. That's fa
r from guarunteed mind you and most opponents will punish your frail form for being so mindless, but going from a couple Nairs into a Fair is a pretty formidable combo in terms of damage as is.
Thrud's Nair really does too much knockback to combo, and its hurt by her having longer end lag than her sisters regardless. What its useful for is not as a combo tool, but as a combo breaker. I mentioned earlier Thrud has some problems being combo food with her weight/floatiness, but this gives her a great tool to break out of not true combos by virtue of the fact that it comes out so fast. Yeah, you're not landing anything else off it, and using it on the offensive runs the risk of whiffing and actually getting a pretty sizeable punish, but it emphasizes alongside her kill moves being less punishable on the back end and her greater amount of heavy/super armor that Thrud has an impressive level of survivability to make up for what are otherwise very real heavyweight flaws.
Ortlinde's Nair is on paper the black sheep of the group with its end lag is worse than Hildr's so it combos into itself and Fair for less time, and its too slow to do the kind of combo breaking Thrud's does. Ortlinde does, at the very least, have one nice part of her Fair, and that's a sweetspot about 50 degrees below horizontal in her swing that deals 15% and almost entirely horizontal knockback that KOs at 130%. This is actually a seriously good KO move hampered by how brief and small the buffed hitbox is, only out for one frame of the spin and in a pretty specific hitbox on that frame. Its incredible for offstage kills when you pull it off in conjunction with how far Ortlinde can go via Up Special and her jumps, though, and that's not even all its good for. At lower percents on stage, it can actually force techs due to the super low angle of the knockback! Then you can read them with a Down Smash, Side Special, Forward Smash... maybe even a Nova if you're really clever, and this is before we even get into all the disgusting things things you could manage with an Assistant Valkyrie. Ortlinde's Nair sweetspot is an extremely potent part of an otherwise mediocre move that makes Ortlinde's air game much scarier when you can threaten its existence. And between her incredible amount of air time, Nair having a limited ability to link into itself and comboing or at least linking well out of other moves in Ortlinde's set, and the aid of an Assistant Valkyrie, its easier to line up this situational sweetspot than you might think.
Forward Aerial - Rapid Stab
Pointing their lance forward, the Valkyrie stabs rapidly up and down in a move that varies a decent bit between Valkyries. Its a move that comes out on Frame 8
, or 13
, and the rapid hits add up to 5 hits totaling 10%
, 8 hits totaling 17%
, or 4 hits totaling 14%
. The final hit is either weak knockback that sets up for a potential chain of Fairs, with Ortlinde actually able to link two together potentially at low percents, or in the case of Thrud knockback that KOs from the ledge at around 165%, which is wholely unimpressive but if she goes far enough offstage it can at least get the job done. Hildr can string Fairs together reasonably well but there's too much end lag and base knockback for it to be a true combo at any percent. That said, the range and start lag are more than enough for her to pull it off, and the damage of a string of 2 or 3 Fairs is actually incredible. Nevermind that you can use the blessing to actually start true comboing them together.
So you might be wondering what the problem with Hildr's Fair is compared to the other two, considering its immense damage racking potential. That'd be the duration, because it takes quite a while for the actual attack to finish. If the stabs miss the opponent, the duration alone is enough for this move to be quite punishable, not to mention the less than great end lag, making it a unique case of a fast move being high risk, high reward. Of course, you can use your jump to line it up at risk of a directional air dodge around it, and Hildr actually does have a few moves that combo or at least link nicely into Fair. Its a pretty critical move in Hildr's relentless offense with a lot of upside, but like always with Hildr, it emphasizes that she plays a more dangerous game than the other Valkyries. Its still a respectable spacer for Thrud and combo tool for Ortlinde too, and all three Valkyries will find this a decent option against a damaged shield as the mix of high and low pokes can potentially hit a part of an opponent sticking out of a partially damaged shield. With all Valkyries the landing lag on this move is moderate, enough that you don't really want to land out of the middle of this move and would rather just let it end on its own. If you do land during it, you'll end up in about frame neutral, give or take a frame.
For the purposes of using Assistant Valkyries, this move is even better than Jab in exchange for the higher lag and duration resulting in some safety issues. Mixing the two up with each other makes both individually more potent as it can make it harder for the foe to predict how to react. Hildr's is a particular all star here once again, due to its longer duration coming in handy for locking foes down the longest. With strategic use of it and some repositioning of Thrud with moves like Side Special and Up Special, you could maybe even actually land Thrud's extremely laggy Nova by keeping the opponent boxed into its range! And with Ortlinde being a bit more consistent at comboing into herself at lower percents with this move, she can also do a lot of work towards lining up a big hit from Thrud or Hildr herself.
Back Aerial - Odin's Wrath
Gripping their spear in both hands, the Valkyrie thrusts it behind herself with great force, the entire spear glowing brightly. This is for all Valkyries a laggy kill move with knockback at a low diagonal, dealing 15%
, and 18%
respectively and killing from center stage at 130%
, and 100%
. The move comes out on Frame 18
, or 20
and has pretty bad end lag, with Ortlinde and Thrud being thrown a bit off balance and needing to readjust and Hildr being thrown dramatically further off balance and outright fumbling in the air a bit. If you whiff with this move as Hildr, considering your low weight, its gonna be really bad.
A fairly basic kill move on paper, but there's a lot of reasons its better than it looks. Its obviously easy enough to set up with an Assistant Valkyrie, and Thrud's Down Tilt can chain into it at specific ranges if she's got at least 2 moves worth of blessing. Hildr's is arguably the single best KO move in the entire set when it comes out on Frame 15 and has that kind of power, because if you lock the foe in enough hitstun with an assistant Valkyrie you can always go into it without having to worry about the end lag. Of course the positioning you get when an Assistant Valkyrie first spawns makes this a bit less trivial to pull off that it sounds, it'll take a bit to line the foe up between your Bair and the attacking Assistant Valkyrie. But its still incredibly potent. The thing is, you don't even necessarily need an assistant to make this move potent with decent reads. Valkyries have universally good aerial movement to line this move up, between 4 jumps and impressive air speed, and all 3 of them have good Nairs to apply additional pressure to opponents behind them in the air. This makes it easier to pull this move off close to the side blast zones, where it kills hilariously early, and on top of that you can even mitigate the move's worst quality with the blessing. Its not a complex or especially varied move between Valkyries, but its stellar at what it does, and an option that consistently remains there as a threat for the opponent no matter what Valkyrie you're controlling.
Up Aerial - Sky Sweep
The Valkyrie swings their spear above them in a glowing arc emphasized by a slight rainbow of light behind their spear. This comes out on Frame 11
, or 14
and deals 12% and upwards knockback that KOs at 180%
, 13% and upwards knockback that KOs at 180%
, or 15% and upwards knockback that KOs at 140%
. This is a fairly strong aerial in terms of damage and has good coverage, with the downside being across the board its a little on the slow side, with the end lag being punishable too. Its still fast enough for Hildr and Ortlinde that it can serve as a combo ender, and Thrud's Down Tilt can combo into it because of the weird inward knockback for a pretty respectable amount of damage between the two strong hits. With that said, despite the great aerial movement the Valkyries have and the good range of this move, its punishable enough on whiff and lacking enough in speed for an aerial that you aren't going to be able to ladder with it as effectively as you'd hope.
You certainly can ladder with it if you're determined though, especially with the help of an Assistant Valkyrie. Best done with Ortlinde due to her stronger first jump than Hildr and faster Uair compared to Thrud, having another Valkyrie throwing out Nairs/Dairs/Uairs alongside you can do a lot of work in making the first couple Uairs get the opponent quite high into the sky, especially with the help of platforms. From there, you only need to read the foe right on one or two more for the kill. Up Smash can also help set this up by giving Uair extra range and durational coverage, which is certainly predictable but none-the-less scary with a singular Valkyrie and a downright menace if you've got your assistant out. You're not going to be scoring tons of your kills off ladder combos due to this move linking poorly into itself, but it IS another threat that the foe certainly has to fear when you have an Assistant Valkyrie out, expanding on the almost limitless pool of kill options it offers you.
Down Aerial - Skewer
The Valkyrie does a simple, almost unenthusiastic downwards stab that comes out on Frame 7
. This has decent range due to the stabbing motion and pops the opponent up for 8%
, with upwards knockback that will basically never kill for Ortlinde but kill around 280%
for Thrud. At low percents it combo into Nair for both of them, quickly scaling past that point for Thrud and serving as a true combo into Uair for Ortlinde but not for Thrud. Putting the foe above a Valkyrie is still never a bad place for them to be with the Valkyries great aerial movement and Nair/Uair/Up Tilt/Up Smash giving a varied mix of anti-air options, so even beyond the combo potential having a vertical launcher against foes below you is nice just for the advantage state.
You know what's better than an advantage state though? A strong spike on a character with 4 jumps, and Hildr knows this. She grips the spear with much greater enthusiasm than her sisters and jams it downward with great force, descending her own height through the air as she does so. This comes out on an alarmingly slow frame 19
, deals 15%
and a spike that, while not as strong as the infamous Ganon Dair, is not as far off as you'd think and kills foes offstage very, very early. Even the onstage groundbounce can still kill at around 130%
, which is pretty formidable, and an aerial foe smacked into the stage gets sent into untechable prone. This is an extremely rewarding hitbox, and one that exemplifies Hildr's high risk, high reward nature because you absolutely do not want to whiff this, the FAF is 85. There's probably not a lot of overlap in K. Rool and Valkyrie mains, but those who do clearly like the feeling of missing a vertically angled aerial and dying. Still, this is a hell of a powerful callout tool, one you can use score kills at basically any percent to show just how much of a cannon the glass cannon Hildr can be.
Oh, yeah, and by the way Hildr Dair is insane with the help of an Assistant Valkyrie. Another Valkyrie throwing out aerials or locking the foe near the ledge in a Jab combo makes it so much easier to land, and smacking the foe to the floor in untechable prone is a terrifying Nova or even Up Smash + Nova setup. This is not to mention that when Hildr herself is the Assistant, she can use Dair without fear of dying, so if you switch offstage you can throw out this ungodly dangerous hitbox to put the fear of the Allfather into the foe while the other Valkyrie performs their own aerial game. Perhaps the opponent playing super safe around Hildr Dair can let you land Ortlinde's Nair sweetspot, or a Bair...
Grab Game Grab
The Valkyrie reaches forward with both hands in a quick grab, pulling the opponent in close to them with their hands under their arms like they're about to carry them off to Valhalla. The Valkyrie will actually float slightly off the ground with the opponent while holding them, which is just an animation and not anything that actually matters for gameplay.
If you grab an opponent while an Assistant Valkyrie is out, they'll actually pause what they're doing and wait for the controlled Valkyrie to throw the opponent before continuing their assault, taking 20 frames after the throw ends to do so to give the opponent a bit more of a chance to react. If they're in the middle of an attack while the opponent gets grabbed, they will finish out that attack, which can be a benefit with Thrud's Nova... but just keep in mind the range on this grab is pretty bad. Its not the worst, but enough that fishing for it can be dangerous. Assistant Valkyries straight up will not use grabs themselves.
One of the Valkyrie's hands presses into the opponent, producing a rainbow light against their body that singes them for 2% in a pretty slow pummel. There's nothing really of note here, this is a very standard pummel.
Up Throw - To Valhalla!
Restraining the foe with a bond of light around their body, the Valkyrie is given the ability to freely move with the foe in their grip! This is a classic cargo throw comparable to Donkey Kong's FThrow, albeit on paper much stronger for the Valkyries because of their vastly better aerial prowess. But the thing about that is that they're not exactly super strength oriented heavyweights like Donkey Kong, so their grip on the foe is much weaker, allowing the foe to break out of the cargo throw quite fast. Thrud can hold onto the foe for the longest period(less than half the length of DK's, mind you), Hildr can hold onto them for a bit less time than Thrud, and Ortlinde can carry the foe a bit less than Hildr can.
At any point the Valkyrie can throw the foe for 4% and tiny knockback in one of the four cardinal directions of their choice, with both parties left in frame neutral due to the end lag. Ortlinde's actually is a little better, dealing 6% and slightly higher knockback that does scale a bit too, as well as enough frame advantage to lead into a Jab at low percents because of how fast it is! This throw might not seem like much, but at high percents when escape difficulty becomes high enough, you could theoretically move the foe super close to a blast zone with it and recover unlike Donkey Kong, making this serve as a weird KO throw, but a KO throw none-the-less. Probably for the best you only go for this on Thrud or Ortlinde though, Hildr has some trouble with it until percents you really should be aiming to KO earlier than.
Carrying the foe off stage has all sorts of applications even before KO percents, but the primary thing is just to set up all those nasty offstage scenarios the aerials thrive off. Early Bair kills, Ortlinde's Nair, Hildr's Dair, and just comboing a foe out of grab a couple more hits to send them off the blast zone is a pretty formidable way to send the foe to their worthy warrior's afterlife in Valhalla. Or if they're unworthy like Tristan Taylor, hell.
Obviously, you won't always get the chance to relocate a foe off stage with this much weaker cargo throw, but it also has some pretty impressive utility while you have out an Assistant Valkyrie. As the Valkyrie will pause during your throw, you can just throw them into the ideal range to sandwich the foe between your next attack and your assistant's next attack in the most inconvenient way possible. Or, theoretically, you can throw the foe into a Nova, which means the opponent REALLY cannot afford to get grabbed if an Assistant Valkyrie is in the midst of preparing a Nova. Its a pretty small window of opportunity so its not quite as powerful as it sounds, but there's plenty of other crazy setups you can put the foe right in the middle of out of this move.
Forward Throw - Skewer Combo
The Valkyrie slams the opponent into the ground in front of them before performing four rapid stabs on the foe, skewering them at four points in their arc through the air before they land, dealing a total of 15%
, or 12%
across 5 hits. This leaves the foe in front of the Valkyrie at a distance just outside their melee reach and in a variable position of disadvantage depending on the Valkyrie you're using. Thrud gets the most frame advantage at 8 frames, which isn't a lot and she's not going to be able to immediately follow up with Jab, but enough the foe is forced to react quickly, and perhaps incorrectly, to Thrud's next move, such as shielding right into Jab's ability to pressure it or panic attacking an approaching Thrud only for Down Smash or Forward Tilt to intercept them. Its not a combo throw, but the advantage state is certainly appreciated, and puts the foe at the worst position in relation to an Assistant Valkyrie of any variants either.
Ortlinde only has 4 frames of advantage, and while she can make up for this with faster attacks compared to Thrud, the options she can use to take advantage of this small frame advantage are inferior to Thrud's due to both her lack of shield/dodge pressure and generally worse numbers. But she's got her weird mixups and specific hitboxes she can fish for out of this, and if you can read an opponent well you're not just getting a formidable damage number but also a heavy hit out of it as well! Hildr straight up leaves the opponent in frame neutral, with no advantage whatsoever gained out of this move as she's too busy trying to look cool on her last stab, leaving her with great enough end lag the foe recovers at the same time as her. But clearly, while she think about where she'd be going after landing this move, she put her all into it when it deals 20%, a very unusual amount for a throw, so the complete lack of an advantage state is justified. Because hey, if the opponent reacts properly to while the other two Valkyries got frame advantage, this ended up giving you the net highest quantity of damage out of this throw, giving Hildr a pretty impressive floor on what a grab with her is capable of.
Down Throw - Burning Light
Taking out an energy spear made of light, the Valkyrie thrusts it through the opponent's midsection, dealing them 5% and releasing the opponent in frame neutral, the spear still jutting out of them. This damage and frame neutral result is universal for every Valkyrie, but the spear will stick around embedded in the foe for 7 seconds, after which, it will detonate! The specifics of this detonation vary a bit between your Valkyries. For Hildr, it explodes for 8% with moderate diagonal knockback
that can be tricky to combo off unless you're specifically in position for it, but does add the threat of a time bomb interrupting foe's dodges, chipping and stunning their shield, or just compounding on existing knockback to make them easier to edgeguard or tipping them off the blast zone. Thrud's, meanwhile, only deals 6% but light upwards knockback
, perfect as a combo extension tool or starter if its hits the foe, but having less impact if it hits the foe while they've been spaced away from you. Due to Thrud's higher knockback and spacing potential, she appreciates Hildr's light spear as a means to extend it, and Hildr appreciates Thrud giving her some extra combo potential.
Ortlinde's light spear is especially
weird, weirder than most of her techniques in this set have been so far. It starts out dealing 7% and knockback on a high diagonal that KOs at 220%
, but actually will decrease in power over time if the foe has not taken any additional hits. If the opponent goes without taking damage for 3 seconds, its power will decrease by 2% per second until it fizzles out entirely, so you need to keep up pressure on the opponent for Ortlinde's light spear to work at all. However, additional hits on the opponent will increase the power of the light spear, causing it to glow and flare up to indicate an increase in power. A hit of 10% or less will only increase its power by 1%, a singular hit of a multi-hit move will increase it by 0.5%, and a hit of 11% or greater will increase it by 3%. This makes it useful for both Hildr and Thrud, with Hildr's longer combos and Thrud's high damage attacks being able to increase its power more easily than Ortlinde can, up to a maximum power of 20% where it actually KOs at 80%! Especially if its capping off the knockback of another attack, that's a ferociously powerful time bomb, certainly not to be underestimated, and you can rapidly build up its power potentially during an Assistant Valkyrie based combo!
With all that said, having an extra hit for the foe to worry about, even if its at a predictable interval for them, can be really helpful if you're smart about taking advantage of that interval. Throw out an Assistant Valkyrie when the spear is about to detonate to give them another
hitbox to worry about. Use a later Up Throw to drag the foe into a dangerous offstage game with you while the spear is about read to explode. Throw out big powerful moves like Thrud Forward Smash that are already good against defensive options, or like Up Smash which give additional payoffs on top of just giving the foe 2 scary hitboxes to worry about. Give the opponent something else to worry about when you're fishing for Bairs or Ortlinde Nair sweetspots to make it that much easier to mess with a foe in aerial combat against your excellent air movement. You're pretty much clear to abuse this however you want if you can hold onto an advantage state at the time the bomb becomes an immediate threat... but each Valkyrie has their own weaknesses in getting to said advantage state, so keep in mind its not instantly going to pay itself off. Especially Ortlinde's, while its by far the most powerful Time Bomb if you're using it you better be confident you can keep the foe on the back foot the next few seconds.
Back Throw - Dismiss
The Valkyrie spins the foe around behind them, releasing them while also hitting them with their lance a moment later. This deals 9%
, or 11%
, and good horizontal knockback behind the Valkyrie that gets the foe out of your face, but scales poorly enough it won't KO until disappointingly high and largely irrelevant percents, even at the ledge. Hildr's throw is just generally worse here at getting space with decreased knockback, while Thrud's has a little extra punch to it that'll start killing at the ledge around 170%, so its an option if you don't want to use Up Throw for whatever reason. If there's one nice thing that can be said about the weaker Hildr variant of the throw, it set up foes for Side Special's sweetspot range at medium percents, whereas Ortlinde's only does early and Thrud's will basically stop doing after 0%.
To put it bluntly, this is your spacing throw, because none of the other Valkyrie throws actually get the foe out of your face. You pretty much just go right back to fighting the foe at close range, and sometimes, you'd rather just have a reset. Whether that be to change the Valkyrie you're playing to a more ideal one for the situation, set up Side Special/Up Smash, or prepare a combination attack with an Assistant Valkyrie, having Back Throw to give you room to do that is pretty important utility you'd rather have, no matter how basic the move is.
Final Phantasm - Girls Advent
For their Final Smash, the Valkyrie the player is controlling rises up into the air 3 Ganondorf heights, as a dozen more Valkyries spawn elsewhere on the stage, light spears in hand and centered around the player Valkyrie. The spears are then all cast down in a fashion a bit similar to PK Starstorm, each spear about as large as the Valkyrie holding it and dealing 18% and high diagonal knockback, with the positioning of the Valkyries set up so that usually you'll combo 2-3 light spears into each other for a pretty massive chunk of stage-wide damage. Of course, the foe could always weave between the spears, so be mindful of spacing when throwing this move out. Each Valkyrie has a slightly different formation of additional Valkyries they spawn in terms of shape, Ortlinde spawning an X shape, Hildr spawning an Oval, and Thrud spawning an upside down wide triangle of Valkyries. The lower ones always throw their spears first, followed by the top ones, and they throw 2 at a time. The sky of the stage in question will be bathed in light while this final smash happens, with the presense of the full army of Valkyries casting an almost oppressive radiance down upon the stage.