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Optimizing Link

RetroGamersGuru

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In another realm to optimize my gameplay
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Small bump. So the tools that we have discussed so far, has anyone discovered more applications so far or used the tools more precisely and consistently as discussed? Just wondering in order to see what needs to be improved.
 

SAUS

Smash Ace
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Aug 20, 2008
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866
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No impact land is pretty darn good, but I still mess it up a lot lol. I find it is super handy for punishing the top platform on battlefield and dreamland though. You can get up there and then decide between up-tilt, up-b, and grab, depending on the situation.
 

Avoin

Smash Cadet
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Oct 27, 2015
Messages
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Warren, MI
NIL is pretty simple it seems, i pull it off almost every time i try in practice, battlefield seems pretty simple to pull it off on. especially on the top platform. seems the only way to hit the top platform is a NIL anyways. and with the lower platforms it's just kinda double jumping instantly with a slight timing on it.

So lately, i've been Up-B ledge guarding on fox/falcos off the map on most any map, i tend to have a knack at timing it very well. I'm probably a mid level player, so is it just that i'm pulling off something i shouldn't on mid level players, or is it an actual viable edge guarding tool?
 

SAUS

Smash Ace
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NIL is pretty simple it seems, i pull it off almost every time i try in practice, battlefield seems pretty simple to pull it off on. especially on the top platform. seems the only way to hit the top platform is a NIL anyways. and with the lower platforms it's just kinda double jumping instantly with a slight timing on it.

So lately, i've been Up-B ledge guarding on fox/falcos off the map on most any map, i tend to have a knack at timing it very well. I'm probably a mid level player, so is it just that i'm pulling off something i shouldn't on mid level players, or is it an actual viable edge guarding tool?
Do you mean you just up-b on the stage and they up-b into it?

It is definitely the correct answer at times, but usually the spacies can choose an angle so that they avoid it. It is veeerry bad if you miss with it since they get back for free AND get a free punish (which could hurt badly depending on the spacy player and your DI / SDI).

Basically, if they can't up-b in a way that lets them stay below the stage the whole time and then grab the ledge, you can up-b and it will probably kill them (watch out for high angles though). Battlefield is particularly good for confirming this since they can't hug the wall if they up-b below the stage.
 

Bravo_10

Smash Apprentice
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Oct 2, 2013
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Up-B on space animals is usually a bit of a read. If they're recovering high, they're not gonna let you do it unless you really make it looks like you can't cover the ledge angle. If recovering from below though, they have a choice of angles depending on where they are with respect to the ledge.

Directly below - They can go straight up or ride up to the ledge on stages with walls. Most spacey players will be good at the M2K style wall-ride angles, so I'd not recommend going for up-B here. You can try reacting to their angle with d-tilt instead, that's safer and hits below the ledge. Straight up gets bopped by the up-B, but they can also start the move low enough to sweetspot the ledge that way. However if they're in this situation on Battlefield, you've pretty much got them dead to rights unless they go super low.

Diagonally away - There's three options here. They can go for a wall ride again if the stage has walls. If it doesn't though, there's two ways to get around the up-B. One of them is to go over the top of up-B, then grab the ledge with magnet hands. The other is to try and aim directly at Link's feet, hitting him before they get clipped by his sword hitbox. You are totally capable of covering both of these angles, but you have to choose one. If you up-B at the very edge of the stage, there's no way they can come down through it (unless they get really lucky with a fast fall). Whereas if you put the up-B hitbox right where the ledge is, they'll die for trying to hit your feet. One thing you might to to try and fool them is to bluff an option; stand really close to the ledge, then wavedash back up-B as soon as fire fox/bird starts. Likewise, you could stand farther away, then wavedash forward up-B to read the high angle.

All that said, some players are bad at fire fox angles, and they won't necessarily know how to get around up-B. I might try up-B once the first time someone I haven't played before is recovering from below, just to test them. But once they've proved to me that they know what's up, I just go for offstage edge guards, boomerang throws, or tilts.
 

Avoin

Smash Cadet
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Oct 27, 2015
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Warren, MI
Yeah battlefield seems like the prime stage for this, also tend to pull it off on FD more often than not. On yoshi's i usually just opt for the good old basic edgeguards. DL isn't bad for it either.

Yeah i played my friend today, who places pretty high at our locals, and he tends to read my off stage up-b pretty well, but that's probably because he plays me 4-5 days a week lol. I guess it probably takes a pretty good read on our part to make that call, and maybe psych them out a bit, it's a very dangerous strat for us to have, will confirm a kill 9/10 times if you do it right.

So, that falcon match up though. FD seems to work amazingly, and FoD works pretty well, but i tend to get bodied in this match up particularly. why? i know its hard for link, would you say it's the worst?
 
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Bravo_10

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Yeah battlefield seems like the prime stage for this, also tend to pull it off on FD more often than not. On yoshi's i usually just opt for the good old basic edgeguards. DL isn't bad for it either.

Yeah i played my friend today, who places pretty high at our locals, and he tends to read my off stage up-b pretty well, but that's probably because he plays me 4-5 days a week lol. I guess it probably takes a pretty good read on our part to make that call, and maybe psych them out a bit, it's a very dangerous strat for us to have, will confirm a kill 9/10 times if you do it right.

So, that falcon match up though. FD seems to work amazingly, and FoD works pretty well, but i tend to get bodied in this match up particularly. why? i know its hard for link, would you say it's the worst?
Yeah, I mean... there's a reason this exists. https://www.facebook.com/groups/816165665102847/

I the Falcon matchup, and I'm certainly not the one to talk to, but I'd worry about FD versus this guy. It's a huge stage where there's really nowhere to get away from him, plus he can run miles in the opposite direction if he ever wants to escape your pressure. FoD is easily our best stage in that matchup, but it's almost always going to be banned. Yoshi's story is good if you're decent at avoiding his pressure, but it can be hellish if you lose stage control. I also quite like Pokemon Stadium, but that's mostly preference. He has a lot of room to run, but you get great coverage of the side platforms.

Really it seems like the only way Link can win is if you just rush him down. Corner Falcon, don't give him a chance to abuse his huge mobility advantage. If you can make him shield, Link has decent shield pressure options against him (jabbing his shield is actually great because you can do it from far away, and his out of shield aerials all have either poor start up or poor range). Other than that, just learn to kill him from every touch. His zero-to-death potential on Link is nuts, and up-throw knee is utterly guaranteed from about 70% to 120%. So you're going to have to do the same to him whenever you get the chance.

Also he's a potato offstage.
 

Avoin

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Yeah, I mean... there's a reason this exists. https://www.facebook.com/groups/816165665102847/

I the Falcon matchup, and I'm certainly not the one to talk to, but I'd worry about FD versus this guy. It's a huge stage where there's really nowhere to get away from him, plus he can run miles in the opposite direction if he ever wants to escape your pressure. FoD is easily our best stage in that matchup, but it's almost always going to be banned. Yoshi's story is good if you're decent at avoiding his pressure, but it can be hellish if you lose stage control. I also quite like Pokemon Stadium, but that's mostly preference. He has a lot of room to run, but you get great coverage of the side platforms.

Really it seems like the only way Link can win is if you just rush him down. Corner Falcon, don't give him a chance to abuse his huge mobility advantage. If you can make him shield, Link has decent shield pressure options against him (jabbing his shield is actually great because you can do it from far away, and his out of shield aerials all have either poor start up or poor range). Other than that, just learn to kill him from every touch. His zero-to-death potential on Link is nuts, and up-throw knee is utterly guaranteed from about 70% to 120%. So you're going to have to do the same to him whenever you get the chance.

Also he's a potato offstage.

Yeah i tend to like pokemon too, probably for the same reason i like FD, probably comes down to preference as you said. I tend to play the distance/projectile game in the MU on pokemon/FD. I like to cut off his approach with boomerang/bomb wall and look for an opening after i take some options away. but yeah man like, he gets percent on us fast, and then U throw knee is a killer, really hard to avoid on a competent falcon.

Will try out the rush game vs him, pretty much forced to on most stages anyways. It's just a really difficult one for me to adjust to lately. Will probably always be an issue to some degree. Funny that he seems much harder than fox/falco, most wouldn't expect that.
 

Avoin

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SAUS SAUS watched your set vs n0ne. Completely embodies the issues this match up brings.

Falcon just smothers us to no end. I don't know how we can really counter it. certain reads that fail seem to be SUUUPER punished in this matchup such as up-b/grab, which of course always get punishes pretty hard, but this seems to be the epitome lol. seems you were playing the aggressive in your face game and it seemed to work okay but, not sure we do that good enough to really compete with falcon.

i'm drawing a blank when i think about accurately countering this character. But i'm also not the best player/analatics person haha.

What are some of your general thoughts? i'm pretty sure we're all having our struggles in this MU.
 

Bravo_10

Smash Apprentice
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Oct 2, 2013
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Hmm SAUS fought n0ne? I didn't even know. In my opinion, he's the Link to watch these days with respect to that matchup. When he visited Georgia for a tournament this year, all the local Falcon mains were pretty amazed with his punish game.

However that n0ne set shows off how difficult that matchup can be. Link gets death-comboed easily, he has a hard time securing KO's, it's difficult to get a bomb out without eating a punish. Another thing that always vexes me is how difficult it is to combo Falcon at low percents. In game 2, SAUS got n0ne to run into a perfect three-hit up smash, then immediately went for the up air. But at that percent, up air doesn't even have enough knockback to knock Falcon into tumble, so the combo just sort of ended. I feel like there must be better options off of guaranteed launchers like that, but the only thing I can really think to do at this point is to go for a knock down, then try and tech chase him until he's around 40% or so. You can also probably get some cheeky double bair or bair-nair combos in too, but I really want to learn how I can maximize damage on Falcon after getting, say, a grab at 0%.

Optimal combos, where are you hiding?
 

ShadowKing

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I've been practiceing that same thing with Link and had reach something but small.I'm getting pretty close to where I can use it once or twice in matches
 

SAUS

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I dropped a lot of edge guards against n0ne and definitely DI'd wrong in some cases. It's a hard matchup and n0ne is a beast. I went over the match a bit and have some ideas for what to do better. TBH, there are basically no falcon mains in my region lol.

EDIT:
Anyway, on a side note, I found something kind of cool. D-smash has a sweet spot at the hilt hitbox. I don't know the exact number, but against spacies, it got a knockdown against ASDI down at below 20%. This means you can potentially start punishing tech on spot with d-smash much earlier than I thought. You have to stand very close though.

Another note, if you stand close enough for that d-smash hit against fox, you can cover all of hit tech options without moving.
 
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Bravo_10

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I dropped a lot of edge guards against n0ne and definitely DI'd wrong in some cases. It's a hard matchup and n0ne is a beast. I went over the match a bit and have some ideas for what to do better. TBH, there are basically no falcon mains in my region lol.

EDIT:
Anyway, on a side note, I found something kind of cool. D-smash has a sweet spot at the hilt hitbox. I don't know the exact number, but against spacies, it got a knockdown against ASDI down at below 20%. This means you can potentially start punishing tech on spot with d-smash much earlier than I thought. You have to stand very close though.

Another note, if you stand close enough for that d-smash hit against fox, you can cover all of hit tech options without moving.
It's funny you bring that up, I found out about that d-smash sweetspot about a month ago and have wanted to test to see if it would get earlier knockdowns (I remember it being only 1-2% stronger than the weak hit). I think I'll test it out on Fox, Falco, and Falcon when I get home today to see the exact percent that it'll knock them down.

edit: This could be pretty huge actually, if it really knocks down below 20%. Down throw does 6%, and pummels do 3% each, so you could theoretically have a reaction tech chase after making just one read off of a d-throw at 0% (assuming you pummel once per grab). My worry though is that you'd need to be so close to your opponent that you'd need to wavedash after the throw. And Link's wavedash is pretty slow to start up.

Also RetroGamersGuru RetroGamersGuru , that weak knee edge guard to cover the hookshot seemed like a reaction. Looks like the struggle might be real if we don't get the instant ledge-snap sweetspot.
 
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SAUS

Smash Ace
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The knockdown is based on knockback of the move. The extra damage from the sweetspot of d-smash isn't as significant as the increased knockback is.

I'll have to rewatch the matches for recovery stuff. I think it is definitely possible to edgeguard Link on reaction a lot of the time. The bigger issues I am looking at are:
- problems against Falcon's fat weight (CC and general combo starting)
- edge guarding Falcon
- I want to experiment being less aggressive and going for more projectiles and movement stuff
- I need to figure out what I can do about nair approaches. Stuffing them is good, but then he can bait my moves by threatening nair. I need to see if I can CC punish it and stuff.

The set was definitely a big learning experience for me and it's a lot of footage to work with (especially compared to what I get in my area where I am also the best falcon player lol).
 

SAUS

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So I spoke with Perhapsman about Link's d-smash. This picture will be helpful for explaining things:

There are FOUR distinct hitboxes on Link's first hit of d-smash.

Going outwards, the hitboxes deal these damages:
16%, 17%, 16%, 13%

The hitbox that is used when multiple overlap with an enemy is always the one more outward. This means that being very close to them so that the back part of the 17% hitbox (this is Link's forearm and the sword hilt) and the one inside Link are both overlapping your opponent gives you the best shot at landing the 17% sweetspot (since the 17% hitbox will take priority over the 16% hitbox).

Against Fox, the 17% hitbox gets a knockdown at 11%. That is WAAAY lower than I thought haha. It is 12% against Falco. This is the hitbox you want for tech chasing them and it will start working very early. Against Falcon, the 17% hitbox doesn't get him when he is standing (due to some derpy Z-axis BS lol) but the 16% hitbox will get a knockdown at 18%. This is assuming no true CC (as in crouching before getting hit).

The 13% hitbox gets a knockdown against Fox at 22%. Still better than I thought, actually, but it is quite a bit higher than the 17% hitbox. This is, again, assuming no true CC.

EDIT:
Seems like Falcon is too wide when standing, so the outer 16% hitbox always hits him (the middle part of the sword hitbox).

Numbers for true CC:
Fox (17% hitbox can't hit him for the same reasons as falcon, so 16% hitbox):
42% - This is more how I thought it was haha. So true CC is still really strong against the d-smash.
Falcon (still the 16% hitbox):
54% - Daaamn.

Anyway, what's important is the difference between true CC and not. If you are tech chasing, d-smashing the tech in spot will get another knockdown very easily.
 
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Bravo_10

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So I spoke with Perhapsman about Link's d-smash. This picture will be helpful for explaining things:

There are FOUR distinct hitboxes on Link's first hit of d-smash.

Going outwards, the hitboxes deal these damages:
16%, 17%, 16%, 13%

The hitbox that is used when multiple overlap with an enemy is always the one more outward. This means that being very close to them so that the back part of the 17% hitbox (this is Link's forearm and the sword hilt) and the one inside Link are both overlapping your opponent gives you the best shot at landing the 17% sweetspot (since the 17% hitbox will take priority over the 16% hitbox).

Against Fox, the 17% hitbox gets a knockdown at 11%. That is WAAAY lower than I thought haha. It is 12% against Falco. This is the hitbox you want for tech chasing them and it will start working very early. Against Falcon, the 17% hitbox doesn't get him when he is standing (due to some derpy Z-axis BS lol) but the 16% hitbox will get a knockdown at 18%. This is assuming no true CC (as in crouching before getting hit).

The 13% hitbox gets a knockdown against Fox at 22%. Still better than I thought, actually, but it is quite a bit higher than the 17% hitbox. This is, again, assuming no true CC.

EDIT:
Seems like Falcon is too wide when standing, so the outer 16% hitbox always hits him (the middle part of the sword hitbox).

Numbers for true CC:
Fox (17% hitbox can't hit him for the same reasons as falcon, so 16% hitbox):
42% - This is more how I thought it was haha. So true CC is still really strong against the d-smash.
Falcon (still the 16% hitbox):
54% - Daaamn.

Anyway, what's important is the difference between true CC and not. If you are tech chasing, d-smashing the tech in spot will get another knockdown very easily.
Freakin' awesome. I tried checking knockdown percents with the close-hit d-smash on Fox, Falco, and Falcon yesterday, but I had a really hard time finding the 17% hitbox. The 16% one is still pretty darned good, to be honest. As best I could tell without a 20XX setup, it seemed like that one knocked down Fox and Falco at 14% and 15% respectively. And you're guaranteed to at least land that hitbox if you just stand next to your opponent.

The key in my mind is that, assuming you pummel once per grab, you can grab -> d-throw -> tech read -> grab -> d-throw -> reaction tech chase. If you get a grab at 0%, you really only need to make one read before the close hit d-smash will start knocking down and let you actually react to tech in place. You could also bomb -> grab -> reaction tech chase on the spacies from 0%. Such possibilities!
 

SAUS

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Freakin' awesome. I tried checking knockdown percents with the close-hit d-smash on Fox, Falco, and Falcon yesterday, but I had a really hard time finding the 17% hitbox. The 16% one is still pretty darned good, to be honest. As best I could tell without a 20XX setup, it seemed like that one knocked down Fox and Falco at 14% and 15% respectively. And you're guaranteed to at least land that hitbox if you just stand next to your opponent.

The key in my mind is that, assuming you pummel once per grab, you can grab -> d-throw -> tech read -> grab -> d-throw -> reaction tech chase. If you get a grab at 0%, you really only need to make one read before the close hit d-smash will start knocking down and let you actually react to tech in place. You could also bomb -> grab -> reaction tech chase on the spacies from 0%. Such possibilities!
And falcon, too :p he only needs to be at 18% for it to knockdown again. You may need an extra hit in there or something, but it's a pretty big deal.
 

The Carpenter

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Idk if anyone remembers me cuz I haven't been on the boards for like 9 months oops but I just checked out and tried some of the stuff talked about in this thread. Some pretty niffy stuff, I like it. The auto tether snap is amazing, I'll need to practice to get that down.

With the no impact land I accidentally figured out that Link's shot hop incidentally is exactly the perfect height to get it with one jump onto an FoD platform when it's in the low position. Pretty specific but good knowledge to have, might be just the perfect thing in a rare situation. I can definitely see no impact land being a big deal, lots of options. One thought I just had is if someone is coming down from above and throws out a dair because they see us coming up we could probably beat it by getting an instant up tilt upon landing.

I'll need to look at the rest of the thread when I get a chance and see what else was discussed that I missed, very exciting!
 

grey music

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I'm a complete newb to the scene but I have to say I'm in love with this thread. I've been labbing Link for a few months now and am delighted to see you guys have probably already figured everything out :p That said, after I'm done reading I will do my best to make contributions and share thots I've come up w/ from watching Link matches. :)
 

grey music

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Okay, thread digested. I've done a lot of work that hasn't been included here but it would take me a really long time to type all of it up. Things I will mention that maybe we could talk about:

- Applications for bomb z-dropping and z-placement on platforms/ground. This is usually just looked at as a supercilious AT, but placing bombs allows for platform control, additional edgeguard options, multiple projectiles to throw at once, or, most importantly, your opponent wondering why the hell you put a bomb on a platform. And if they pick it up? All the better.

- Percentages and guaranteed setups. This is the majority of my gameplay as Link, and I think it's the largest step towards optimizing him. Here's an example: When I'm playing against Fox, my first goal is to get him to 15%, because at 15% I can either uthrow chaingrab (not guaranteed but usually catches ppl) or dthrow tech-chase/jab-reset. And /if/ I get a jab reset, I will dsmash them, which can either lead to another jab reset or a grab--as they are now at 45%ish, I will uthrow and follow up based on their DI; u-tilt if they have no DI, and single hit fsmash if they DI in either direction. From there I follow the tech, but the point is that if I massage the first few percent w/ projectiles, I can potentially 0-to-death or 80% someone from a single grab. I think Link's grab has an insane amount of guaranteed options on every character (except super floaties like puff), and having percent guarantees and follow-ups memorized for different weight classes is essential to using it. I spend the most time thinking about this when I play or lab.

- Integrated movement. After watching most high-level link players, SAUS seems to be the only one who focuses on wavelanding and wavedash mixups in neutral. Part of the reason so many low/mid-tiers remain low/mid is because they need a player who is committed to fundamentals in every facet of the game, and those players usually play high tier characters because they feel limited by less options. I think Link has a potentially decent dash-dance game which includes use of his wavedash and moonwalk. His moonwalk is insanely good for everything, least of all a mixup, but most of all teeter-cancelled pivot-moonwalk fasftall ledgegrab (hold on let me jerk off over how many words are in that thing i just said). Or whatever. But it needs to be discussed, and as an extension charlie-walking.

I could seriously go on for a lot longer including the mental flowcharts I have for neutral but I don't want to come off like just a big **** posting stuff. If you guys are interested I'll type up more, elsewise, what do you guys think about the topics, and Link's game in the future?
 

Bravo_10

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Okay, thread digested. I've done a lot of work that hasn't been included here but it would take me a really long time to type all of it up. Things I will mention that maybe we could talk about:

- Applications for bomb z-dropping and z-placement on platforms/ground. This is usually just looked at as a supercilious AT, but placing bombs allows for platform control, additional edgeguard options, multiple projectiles to throw at once, or, most importantly, your opponent wondering why the hell you put a bomb on a platform. And if they pick it up? All the better.

- Percentages and guaranteed setups. This is the majority of my gameplay as Link, and I think it's the largest step towards optimizing him. Here's an example: When I'm playing against Fox, my first goal is to get him to 15%, because at 15% I can either uthrow chaingrab (not guaranteed but usually catches ppl) or dthrow tech-chase/jab-reset. And /if/ I get a jab reset, I will dsmash them, which can either lead to another jab reset or a grab--as they are now at 45%ish, I will uthrow and follow up based on their DI; u-tilt if they have no DI, and single hit fsmash if they DI in either direction. From there I follow the tech, but the point is that if I massage the first few percent w/ projectiles, I can potentially 0-to-death or 80% someone from a single grab. I think Link's grab has an insane amount of guaranteed options on every character (except super floaties like puff), and having percent guarantees and follow-ups memorized for different weight classes is essential to using it. I spend the most time thinking about this when I play or lab.

- Integrated movement. After watching most high-level link players, SAUS seems to be the only one who focuses on wavelanding and wavedash mixups in neutral. Part of the reason so many low/mid-tiers remain low/mid is because they need a player who is committed to fundamentals in every facet of the game, and those players usually play high tier characters because they feel limited by less options. I think Link has a potentially decent dash-dance game which includes use of his wavedash and moonwalk. His moonwalk is insanely good for everything, least of all a mixup, but most of all teeter-cancelled pivot-moonwalk fasftall ledgegrab (hold on let me jerk off over how many words are in that thing i just said). Or whatever. But it needs to be discussed, and as an extension charlie-walking.

I could seriously go on for a lot longer including the mental flowcharts I have for neutral but I don't want to come off like just a big **** posting stuff. If you guys are interested I'll type up more, elsewise, what do you guys think about the topics, and Link's game in the future?
Welcome to the boards!

Firstly, I'd like to agree wholeheartedly with that second point you make there. Really my whole purpose with starting this thread was finding tools for optimizing Link's punish game on the top tiers, but it kinda evolved into using smaller, unique aspects of Link's gameplay to improve performance. Which is of course still cool. But more and more I find that I'm prone to dropping combos in clutch situations because I waffle between which move to use next in the sequence. For example, I know that doing a u-throw on Fox in the neighborhood of 20% leads into a d-smash that will likely not be teched (can also use as a tech trap if Fox is expecting it). However I have no idea what this percent is exactly, or how DI impacts the percent that this combo works. In a pressure situation, I have to take an extra split second to make my decision instead of having it just be an automatic reaction to Fox's DI, which can result in a dropped combo and a dropped set. Percent knowledge and optimized combos are things I could work on with a 20XX setup (like Link's reaction tech chase), but I haven't been able to get one yet, and my computer sucks at running Dolphin at 60 FPS.

Also I would like to say that if you're doing throws on Fox, refer to this thread for more reliable follow-ups. http://smashboards.com/threads/grab-punishes-with-link.387797/
You really should try tech chasing with d-throw until you can u-throw d-smash. At around 45%, react to DI away with dash attack instead of f-smash, it leads into more things on reaction, including other dash attacks.

Lastly, Link players definitely need to improve their movement. Nobody's reached Bizzarroflame levels of movement optimization, but we're getting there. I move pretty fast, though I never really get to show anybody. Movement alone is also not going to get you anywhere unless you do it smartly. If you want an idea of both how to move around the stage intelligently, and then immediately an idea of how to move quickly but stupidly, look at games 2 and 3 of this match (game 1 was awful and it embarrasses me lol). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqAJ7GUXf28
 

The Carpenter

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Lastly, Link players definitely need to improve their movement. Nobody's reached Bizzarroflame levels of movement optimization, but we're getting there. I move pretty fast, though I never really get to show anybody. Movement alone is also not going to get you anywhere unless you do it smartly. If you want an idea of both how to move around the stage intelligently, and then immediately an idea of how to move quickly but stupidly, look at games 2 and 3 of this match (game 1 was awful and it embarrasses me lol). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WqAJ7GUXf28
That second game is exactly how I feel we win against Peach. It's a good strat in general but much easier to use against floaties. As a Link with movement that is mediocre at best, I heavily agree that good movement is super important for Link because it makes that kind of strategy easier to use and it helps us to not get locked down. I have a lot of issues that probably wouldn't be too bad if I had better movement. A few examples, difficulty getting down from platforms safely against Marth, difficulty finding approach openings against Puff, and getting locked down by Falco's shine pillars, lasers, pressure game in general. I feel like being able to work with platforms quickly is really important and I'm trying to improve in that area (this whole no impact land thing should help with that some I'd think)
 

SAUS

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Okay, thread digested. I've done a lot of work that hasn't been included here but it would take me a really long time to type all of it up. Things I will mention that maybe we could talk about:

- Applications for bomb z-dropping and z-placement on platforms/ground. This is usually just looked at as a supercilious AT, but placing bombs allows for platform control, additional edgeguard options, multiple projectiles to throw at once, or, most importantly, your opponent wondering why the hell you put a bomb on a platform. And if they pick it up? All the better.

- Percentages and guaranteed setups. This is the majority of my gameplay as Link, and I think it's the largest step towards optimizing him. Here's an example: When I'm playing against Fox, my first goal is to get him to 15%, because at 15% I can either uthrow chaingrab (not guaranteed but usually catches ppl) or dthrow tech-chase/jab-reset. And /if/ I get a jab reset, I will dsmash them, which can either lead to another jab reset or a grab--as they are now at 45%ish, I will uthrow and follow up based on their DI; u-tilt if they have no DI, and single hit fsmash if they DI in either direction. From there I follow the tech, but the point is that if I massage the first few percent w/ projectiles, I can potentially 0-to-death or 80% someone from a single grab. I think Link's grab has an insane amount of guaranteed options on every character (except super floaties like puff), and having percent guarantees and follow-ups memorized for different weight classes is essential to using it. I spend the most time thinking about this when I play or lab.

- Integrated movement. After watching most high-level link players, SAUS seems to be the only one who focuses on wavelanding and wavedash mixups in neutral. Part of the reason so many low/mid-tiers remain low/mid is because they need a player who is committed to fundamentals in every facet of the game, and those players usually play high tier characters because they feel limited by less options. I think Link has a potentially decent dash-dance game which includes use of his wavedash and moonwalk. His moonwalk is insanely good for everything, least of all a mixup, but most of all teeter-cancelled pivot-moonwalk fasftall ledgegrab (hold on let me jerk off over how many words are in that thing i just said). Or whatever. But it needs to be discussed, and as an extension charlie-walking.

I could seriously go on for a lot longer including the mental flowcharts I have for neutral but I don't want to come off like just a big **** posting stuff. If you guys are interested I'll type up more, elsewise, what do you guys think about the topics, and Link's game in the future?
This thread is by no means complete or exhaustive. It could definitely have more things added to it. I think a lot of the more general things are listed on other threads and I do have a somewhat sloppy throw percents thread (I should probably maintain it better).

17% when you up-throw spacies is when they get knocked down by it, so that's pretty big (considering it is so low - 15% up-throw doesn't knock down, so maybe one pummel is worth it).

I tested out the d-smash stuff and it works quite well, however, at very low damage, if they DI behind you, I don't think you can make it to where they will tech in time. It also causes you to lose the tech option coverage against tech on spot / miss tech and tech behind you, so that limits going for the strong hit to situations where they are between the percents where the strong hit knocks down and the weak hit doesn't (11% - 21% for Fox). At 22%, it doesn't matter as much since both will knock him down. You may as well get the option coverage if you are going for the d-smash.

However, knowing the percents on their own (and just how low they are) is very valuable information on its own. I'm thinking that pivot d-smash might be a good option in place of pivot grab sometimes. It is faster by 2-4 frames or something like that (depends on distance from your opponent) and can still get the knock down pretty early out of things like missed aerials. I think it is much better to land grabs when possible, but the d-smash is a pretty safe bet for opening up your opponent with knock downs (this applies to any character).

I think Link's future involves very strange movement combined with bombs. It is the most safe way to play neutral and can easily be switched to offense because of bomb setups. Link punishes need to approach flawlessness where people die with high consistency off of any good opening. I find reads with Link need to be more macro-level (as in feinting bomb pulls and just general movement reads). Close-range footsies I find are really hard (for me personally) and don't favour Link in basically any matchup. These are mostly just some thoughts of mine and I don't think they should be taken as "right" or anything like that.
 

The Carpenter

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I agree about the close range footsies, I always feel like I get circles run around me in that situation. I find myself trying to get room to breath very often when I'm not on the giving end of a punish game
 

SAUS

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I agree about the close range footsies, I always feel like I get circles run around me in that situation. I find myself trying to get room to breath very often when I'm not on the giving end of a punish game
Ya just generally being too close to your opponent is bad for Link (usually). I find I am bad at it as a player, though. I often go about even against other Link players when I try to just fight them face to face, but then definitely make up for it when I stick to my normal game plan.
 

Bravo_10

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This thread is by no means complete or exhaustive. It could definitely have more things added to it. I think a lot of the more general things are listed on other threads and I do have a somewhat sloppy throw percents thread (I should probably maintain it better).

17% when you up-throw spacies is when they get knocked down by it, so that's pretty big (considering it is so low - 15% up-throw doesn't knock down, so maybe one pummel is worth it).

I tested out the d-smash stuff and it works quite well, however, at very low damage, if they DI behind you, I don't think you can make it to where they will tech in time. It also causes you to lose the tech option coverage against tech on spot / miss tech and tech behind you, so that limits going for the strong hit to situations where they are between the percents where the strong hit knocks down and the weak hit doesn't (11% - 21% for Fox). At 22%, it doesn't matter as much since both will knock him down. You may as well get the option coverage if you are going for the d-smash.

However, knowing the percents on their own (and just how low they are) is very valuable information on its own. I'm thinking that pivot d-smash might be a good option in place of pivot grab sometimes. It is faster by 2-4 frames or something like that (depends on distance from your opponent) and can still get the knock down pretty early out of things like missed aerials. I think it is much better to land grabs when possible, but the d-smash is a pretty safe bet for opening up your opponent with knock downs (this applies to any character).

I think Link's future involves very strange movement combined with bombs. It is the most safe way to play neutral and can easily be switched to offense because of bomb setups. Link punishes need to approach flawlessness where people die with high consistency off of any good opening. I find reads with Link need to be more macro-level (as in feinting bomb pulls and just general movement reads). Close-range footsies I find are really hard (for me personally) and don't favour Link in basically any matchup. These are mostly just some thoughts of mine and I don't think they should be taken as "right" or anything like that.
Are you sure that u-throw d-smash doesn't work if they DI behind? Maybe at the exact percent u-throw knocks down, we'd be too slow. But walking back for one frame then d-smashing gives you a reverse d-smash that's really just that one frame slower than a normal d-smash. Whenever I miss the DI behind, I always assumed I was just slow on the turn around.

I never really worked on pivoting because I always assumed Link had no good options out of pivot, and I could do the pseudo pivot grab by just dash dancing in place and JC grabbing. But d-smash at the closest spacing is 2 frames faster than grab and 3 frames faster than JC grab, so you might be on to something.

And I pretty much agree about movement. I don't pull bombs enough in neutral, and I don't think a lot of players do. I feel like Link's future is somewhere along the lines of a mini-Peach. Devastating punishes whenever you're given the opportunity, slow but tricky movement, abuse of the item projectile. Plus bombs are pretty similar to turnips when you think about it; the major differences being that bombs can be destroyed by swatting at them with a move, and turnips don't lead into quite as many guaranteed combos as bombs do. Armada always harps on other Peach players for not pulling turnips enough, so I think the same thing applies here.
 

SAUS

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Are you sure that u-throw d-smash doesn't work if they DI behind? Maybe at the exact percent u-throw knocks down, we'd be too slow. But walking back for one frame then d-smashing gives you a reverse d-smash that's really just that one frame slower than a normal d-smash. Whenever I miss the DI behind, I always assumed I was just slow on the turn around.

I never really worked on pivoting because I always assumed Link had no good options out of pivot, and I could do the pseudo pivot grab by just dash dancing in place and JC grabbing. But d-smash at the closest spacing is 2 frames faster than grab and 3 frames faster than JC grab, so you might be on to something.

And I pretty much agree about movement. I don't pull bombs enough in neutral, and I don't think a lot of players do. I feel like Link's future is somewhere along the lines of a mini-Peach. Devastating punishes whenever you're given the opportunity, slow but tricky movement, abuse of the item projectile. Plus bombs are pretty similar to turnips when you think about it; the major differences being that bombs can be destroyed by swatting at them with a move, and turnips don't lead into quite as many guaranteed combos as bombs do. Armada always harps on other Peach players for not pulling turnips enough, so I think the same thing applies here.
Sorry I meant getting the 17% sweetspot off of down throw. Down throw below 17% they can DI behind you and you can't get into position to get the 17% sweetspot d-smash to get another knock down against 11+% Fox doesn't seem to work. I'm pretty sure up throw -> turn around -> d-smash works fine.

Pivot punishes (at least the pseudo ones with jump cancel) imo are pretty much necessary. It is Link's equivalent of dash dance grab since he is too slow to actually run back up to the opponent after they miss something so quick like an aerial. I just think pivot d-smash might supplement my pivot grabs in certain cases like when shiek's landing animation ducks my grab, and when I need to be a tiny bit faster..
 

grey music

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I feel like Link's future is somewhere along the lines of a mini-Peach. Devastating punishes whenever you're given the opportunity, slow but tricky movement, abuse of the item projectile.
I think you're 100% on the money w/ this comparison--if anything Link has almost more movement options, and his recovery is about as powerful as long as mixups are applied. Link seems to favour a slow, thoughtful approach more than anything, and it's part of why I love playing him so much.

I noticed after watching some matches that occasionally Links will use utilt in the midst of jab pressure/mixups. This always puzzled me because utilt seems like it comes out way too slow to be used in neutral. And even tho it's the equivalent of a throw in terms of positioning your opponent for follow ups, I've never had success w/ using it outside of throw setups or platform camping. Does anyone else have thots?

I also think that fsmash could be applied a lot more in punishes and neutral. It works about as well as a mixup from jab/gentleman'd jab, and is rly good off forward/back DI from throws. I suppose the hope being that you could dsmash into another tech-chase--but as has been discussed, sometimes the timing/pivoting required for this is too demanding.

What's everyone's standard edguard approach for different chars as Link? I've been struggling vs. my friends YL because he has so many off-stage options, so I find usually the best course of action is to z-drop a bomb and follow up off that. Even then, however, I feel like off-stage nair might be a better option, but it's hard to get consistently.
 

SAUS

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I think you're 100% on the money w/ this comparison--if anything Link has almost more movement options, and his recovery is about as powerful as long as mixups are applied. Link seems to favour a slow, thoughtful approach more than anything, and it's part of why I love playing him so much.

I noticed after watching some matches that occasionally Links will use utilt in the midst of jab pressure/mixups. This always puzzled me because utilt seems like it comes out way too slow to be used in neutral. And even tho it's the equivalent of a throw in terms of positioning your opponent for follow ups, I've never had success w/ using it outside of throw setups or platform camping. Does anyone else have thots?

I also think that fsmash could be applied a lot more in punishes and neutral. It works about as well as a mixup from jab/gentleman'd jab, and is rly good off forward/back DI from throws. I suppose the hope being that you could dsmash into another tech-chase--but as has been discussed, sometimes the timing/pivoting required for this is too demanding.

What's everyone's standard edguard approach for different chars as Link? I've been struggling vs. my friends YL because he has so many off-stage options, so I find usually the best course of action is to z-drop a bomb and follow up off that. Even then, however, I feel like off-stage nair might be a better option, but it's hard to get consistently.
up-tilt is mostly to catch jumps in neutral. If they jump into it, it is an easy follow up. It's fairly hard to punish. I like to mix it up with up-smash sometimes for the timing change and the multi-hits.

For generally pressuring someone's shield, I use mostly spaced jabs and fairs. If they stay in it long, I walk close enough for a mixup between down-smash (low shield stab) and short hop nair (high shield stab). I can also grab, but I only do that when I am more confident in what they will do. Nair I think is the safest because it is the least punishable from that position.

F-smash is weird. Sometimes I just throw it out and it gets people. Against spacies, it is 30-35 damage and a knock down. I think it is something to be used, just sparingly enough that you don't fall into traps with it. You can't afford to miss with it too often. As for punishes, I sometimes use it against low damage spacies when I think they will miss their tech or just as a hard read against tech on spot / miss tech against my down throw. If they miss the tech, they can't even ASDI down out of it.

Against Link and young link, throw things. Boomerang and arrow. Jump off and nair where they air dodge to because they can't not get hit at that point. It takes practice.
 

Avoin

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Nice conversation going on here, like to see that:p

I've been implementing forward smash into my game a lot lately. seems to be a nice mix up that even people you play against a lot, just don't expect. It's nice having the option to have a very fast/very delayed smash, and not doing the second at all prevents punish unless you just whiffed it and they punish you because they weren't even in the strike zone, which really shouldn't happen.

Found a silly little thing while messing around in training, would assume somebody has come across it and doubt it has any relevance, but at any point in a moonwalk, if you throw a bomb you lunge forward as if you dashed forward when you threw it. not sure if you gain any distance as I don't have that type of set up to check it out. Find it easiest to do when I hold to the opposite side of the way you're facing, wait a tad too long and you just throw it backwards. At minimum it's just something to know haha.
 
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SAUS

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So I am discussing some more stuff with Perhapsman. A situation I was thinking about is basically Shiek runs at you when you have no bomb. There is not enough time to pull out a projectile, so you need to basically stop Shiek from getting you. I know I've tried jabbing before, but Shiek's long grab range combined with CC seems to just destroy me. This is what sparked the research.

So I don't have super clear numbers on the frame advantage, but basically, jab against Shiek shield or CC is negative enough to get you grabbed at any percent (until jab will knock down shiek, but that is not applicable lol). What this tells me is that jab is not safe unless it's a mixup. There is, however, a spacing where you can avoid it. Here is the latest timing you can jab without getting grabbed:

(Credit of the image goes to Perhapsman as well)

You can jab up to 6 frames earlier and it will still hit Shiek. It's not a terrible option, but just know you need to be well spaced to prevent Shiek from just CC grabbing your jab.

Link's d-smash weakest hitbox (the 13% one) gets a knock down when Shiek is at 25% (assuming not true CC). I'm pretty sure d-smash also hits farther than jab. It is more punishable if you miss, but it is a good move to consider in this situation.

Up-b is super YOLO and I don't recommend it unless you are really certain Shiek won't shield it and she is at high damage (80+ or something like that).

Grab is also a bit YOLO, but might be a good option here as well, since it also beats shield. Getting the Shiek to want to jump or spot dodge in this situation would also be a huge bonus that you get from grabbing.

Other than that, you basically should aim to escape the situation with a roll / movement / spot dodge.

In the end, you might get better results by avoiding this situation as much as possible or by moving around more so that it's hard for Shiek to place an attack with precision. Anyway, this is a situation I was thinking through and I got some data on it, so I figured I'd share it.
 
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The Carpenter

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I like this option, seems pretty safe because if she jumps, we would have time to get out of the way if all we do is a jab. I often try to grab Marth when he runs at me and it's been a problem because often he happens to jump right as my grab comes out then I get Faired.

Since we're on the subject of Sheik, what would you say the MU generally should look like? I always avoid playing it, when I do it feels like 25/75 in her favor or worse. She has a big advantage for sure but I feel like it probably inst quite as bad as I think. I'm sure I don't know the MU too well, I usually get chain grabbed at least twice in a game. Sheik is bad for Luigi too so I struggle a ton with her
 

grey music

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I'm interested in matchup discussion as well--despite a lot of practice, I'm still struggling vs. Sheik, Falco, and sometimes Falcon, all usually for pure speed and ability to jump in Link's face and not let up. Fox is bad too but I think your tools work better against him than they do against the bird. Specifically, laser pressure is rly hard to do anything against, and once he gets in you're combo meat... obviously, Link isn't picked for his favorable matchups, but I think he does alright vs. most other characters. What are thots on these three specifically?
 

Team Plasma N

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Falco: Imo not THAT bad for Link. Dealing with laser pressure and pillaring are probably the most annoying aspects of this MU. Otherwise you can combo him very similarly to Fox and edgeguard him easier. I find bombs help escaping laser pressure, you can throw them and the laser will just hit that instead. Otherwise avoid the lasers by utilizing platforms, jumping over them (maybe landing a nair on Falco when you do so), or even powershielding lasers consistently. If you can work around that, just don't get comboed into oblivion, mess with DI and SDI to ensure the Falco messes up their combo.

Sheik: Either Link's hardest or second hardest matchup. It's debatable between her and Falcon. Sheik is ridiculously fast and can combo you like you're food to her. To make matters worse, she has a chaingrab on you that can last to the point she can just kill you (starting about 30% and going above 90%). Ban FD whenever possible, if you get grabbed then DI to a platform. Keep her at bay with projectiles.

Falcon: The faster male Sheik ;o . At least he can't chaingrab you (unless I'm mistaken). Anyways if Falcon touches you, get ready to be comboed to death. Projectiles are good if the Falcon doesn't really know what he's doing, but otherwise you pull them out way too slow. By the time Link can even pull out a bomb or a boomerang, Falcon probably already landed a SHFFLed nair on you and has started the combo. This is not to say never to use projectiles though, just use them when you absolutely can. Like spacies, Falcon can get comboed easily. Knowing how to combo Falcon and finishing him off is a key to playing this MU.

There's more information in the MUs thread.
 

Bravo_10

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I used to think Sheik-Link was like a solid 80-20 matchup, but the more I play it, the less obnoxious it seems (relatively speaking). Her chain grab is rough, and her defensive dominance in the neutral game makes it nigh on impossible to approach her. However, Link's punish game on Sheik is pretty devastating, and with patient play you can somewhat mitigate her neutral game advantages. If you're ever forced to play against Sheik on FD, think of the matchup like you would the Ice Climbers on that stage. Keep a bomb in your hands at absolutely all times; if you get grabbed with a bomb, it sets a time limit on the chain grab, and Link with a bomb is difficult for Sheik to approach because bomb toss is an unreactable option with excellent range.

I'm pretty mediocre versus Falco, but I did talk a little bit about it with Christian (formerly known as Zoro), who I think is the best Link around right now when it comes to the Falco matchup. His strategy is to play vertical footsies with the bird. On any stage with platforms, you can stay off of the same horizontal plane as Falco and make it difficult for him to laser you. If he retreats to one side of the stage and tries to shoot you, there aren't a whole lot of options at your disposal for chasing him down, but that's okay. Just be patient, pull a bomb with the free space he's given you, and try to cut off some of his space with boomerang. Other than that, wait for your opening and punish really hard once you get one. If you can ever clip Falco's double jump offstage, he's pretty much going to die from a single nair.

And lastly, Falcon is my worst matchup. So you're probably better off finding help elsewhere. My one piece of advice is that bombs are really damn good against Falcon, it's just difficult to pull them. Peach players tell me that in order to pull turnips in that matchup, they have to make Falcon scared of an offensive option, then pull a turnip when he chooses a defensive option like running away or shielding. Even for him, punishing a bomb pull on reaction isn't always the easiest thing in the world.
 

Thor

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So I am discussing some more stuff with Perhapsman. A situation I was thinking about is basically Shiek runs at you when you have no bomb. There is not enough time to pull out a projectile, so you need to basically stop Shiek from getting you. I know I've tried jabbing before, but Shiek's long grab range combined with CC seems to just destroy me. This is what sparked the research.

So I don't have super clear numbers on the frame advantage, but basically, jab against Shiek shield or CC is negative enough to get you grabbed at any percent (until jab will knock down shiek, but that is not applicable lol). What this tells me is that jab is not safe unless it's a mixup. There is, however, a spacing where you can avoid it.

You can jab up to 6 frames earlier and it will still hit Shiek. It's not a terrible option, but just know you need to be well spaced to prevent Shiek from just CC grabbing your jab.

Link's d-smash weakest hitbox (the 13% one) gets a knock down when Shiek is at 25% (assuming not true CC). I'm pretty sure d-smash also hits farther than jab. It is more punishable if you miss, but it is a good move to consider in this situation.

Up-b is super YOLO and I don't recommend it unless you are really certain Shiek won't shield it and she is at high damage (80+ or something like that).

Grab is also a bit YOLO, but might be a good option here as well, since it also beats shield. Getting the Shiek to want to jump or spot dodge in this situation would also be a huge bonus that you get from grabbing.

Other than that, you basically should aim to escape the situation with a roll / movement / spot dodge.

In the end, you might get better results by avoiding this situation as much as possible or by moving around more so that it's hard for Shiek to place an attack with precision. Anyway, this is a situation I was thinking through and I got some data on it, so I figured I'd share it.
Are you saying if Sheik is at 50% and CCs our jab, even if we do a frame-perfect jab2, we'll get grabbed before our jab comes out?

If you mean ASDI down and CC, not just CC, then thos MU is worse than I thought [unless you mean only CC, in which case, never mind.] If someone could verify that's what you mean I'd appreciate it. [I know that someone mentioned earlier that jab1 has properties that mean Peach can't ASDI dsmash us for it or something... is that just wrong, or somehow different from Sheik?]

---------------

Regarding Falcon, I find one strategy that is sometimes effective is to simply wait. Don't contest his DD that hard, but wait for him to do something. Utilt beats his stomp and sometimes knee and nair [and is very rewarding], jab beats approaching knee and it seems to beat grab [the above information on Sheik may change that], and SH nair can stuff stomp, knee, and sometimes nair. I may not be explaining it well, but the point I'm trying to make is that rather than try to approach Falcon, if you can just play an anti-approach game, it's possible [but hard] to try to stuff his options [and unlike every other top tier, he has neither a projectile nor a clear range advantage to force us to approach/get in range].

Then the thing is, if you hit him in close-quarters, it's a bit easier to capitalize than from afar for a variety of reasons. If Falcon gets jabbed, his best option is probably to roll or dash out to reset the situation, because we can CC his jab/tilts [or try to, gentleman is tricky], and our jab certainly outranges his grab [although he may be able to grab it if the above is as bad as it seems]. Furthermore, at a range when you've sniped his attack with a jab or utilt is when we can land a juicy dsmash and start a combo.

Basically, if you can anti-approach Falcon like this, you take away the biggest thing that makes him threatening, which is his ability to come into us at high speeds with an aerial or grab, because in placing yourself near him, he can't get going, and his aerials are not very quick on startup [CC nair and then unless he goes for immediate SH uair, all his options are quite slow in the air - they're potent against Link because he can do them from a dash, so if you put him in a spot where he can't dash at us, he doesn't have space to get the aerials going].

Maybe the best way to explain it is that old saying, Keep your friends close and your enemies closer? I dunno, maybe I'm saying nonsense, but if it helps someone in the MU, that's something I guess.
 
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SAUS

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Are you saying if Sheik is at 50% and CCs our jab, even if we do a frame-perfect jab2, we'll get grabbed before our jab comes out?

If you mean ASDI down and CC, not just CC, then thos MU is worse than I thought [unless you mean only CC, in which case, never mind.] If someone could verify that's what you mean I'd appreciate it. [I know that someone mentioned earlier that jab1 has properties that mean Peach can't ASDI dsmash us for it or something... is that just wrong, or somehow different from Sheik?]

---------------

Regarding Falcon, I find one strategy that is sometimes effective is to simply wait. Don't contest his DD that hard, but wait for him to do something. Utilt beats his stomp and sometimes knee and nair [and is very rewarding], jab beats approaching knee and it seems to beat grab [the above information on Sheik may change that], and SH nair can stuff stomp, knee, and sometimes nair. I may not be explaining it well, but the point I'm trying to make is that rather than try to approach Falcon, if you can just play an anti-approach game, it's possible [but hard] to try to stuff his options [and unlike every other top tier, he has neither a projectile nor a clear range advantage to force us to approach/get in range].

Then the thing is, if you hit him in close-quarters, it's a bit easier to capitalize than from afar for a variety of reasons. If Falcon gets jabbed, his best option is probably to roll or dash out to reset the situation, because we can CC his jab/tilts [or try to, gentleman is tricky], and our jab certainly outranges his grab [although he may be able to grab it if the above is as bad as it seems]. Furthermore, at a range when you've sniped his attack with a jab or utilt is when we can land a juicy dsmash and start a combo.

Basically, if you can anti-approach Falcon like this, you take away the biggest thing that makes him threatening, which is his ability to come into us at high speeds with an aerial or grab, because in placing yourself near him, he can't get going, and his aerials are not very quick on startup [CC nair and then unless he goes for immediate SH uair, all his options are quite slow in the air - they're potent against Link because he can do them from a dash, so if you put him in a spot where he can't dash at us, he doesn't have space to get the aerials going].

Maybe the best way to explain it is that old saying, Keep your friends close and your enemies closer? I dunno, maybe I'm saying nonsense, but if it helps someone in the MU, that's something I guess.
I'll ask about the Peach CC thing, but if this frame data is correct, Peach should be able to d-smash punish your jab (though I feel like you can still space around it).

Unless I misunderstood what Perhapsman was saying, Shiek can ALWAYS grab your jab1 or jab2 if she is in range and either ASDIing down (with or without true CC) or shielding.

The thing with Falcon doing this exact thing is that his grab range is so much shorter (as it is with most characters). This situation is only so tough against Shiek because her grab is so long. Marth would be similar, but at least you usually don't end up getting rekt so hard by a single grab against him. There are many more outs to his throw follow-ups.

Just looked at Link's frame data on jabs and the numbers are quite tight, but you should get grabbed unless the Shiek messes up. The numbers kind of don't seem to add up for below % where you can ASDI down and land instantly (the thing that supposedly makes it safe against Peach), so maybe there was a communication error somewhere. I will confirm with Perhapsman and report back.
 

The Carpenter

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Jan 3, 2015
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Regarding Falcon, I find one strategy that is sometimes effective is to simply wait. Don't contest his DD that hard, but wait for him to do something. Utilt beats his stomp and sometimes knee and nair [and is very rewarding], jab beats approaching knee and it seems to beat grab [the above information on Sheik may change that], and SH nair can stuff stomp, knee, and sometimes nair. I may not be explaining it well, but the point I'm trying to make is that rather than try to approach Falcon, if you can just play an anti-approach game, it's possible [but hard] to try to stuff his options [and unlike every other top tier, he has neither a projectile nor a clear range advantage to force us to approach/get in range].

Then the thing is, if you hit him in close-quarters, it's a bit easier to capitalize than from afar for a variety of reasons. If Falcon gets jabbed, his best option is probably to roll or dash out to reset the situation, because we can CC his jab/tilts [or try to, gentleman is tricky], and our jab certainly outranges his grab [although he may be able to grab it if the above is as bad as it seems]. Furthermore, at a range when you've sniped his attack with a jab or utilt is when we can land a juicy dsmash and start a combo.

Basically, if you can anti-approach Falcon like this, you take away the biggest thing that makes him threatening, which is his ability to come into us at high speeds with an aerial or grab, because in placing yourself near him, he can't get going, and his aerials are not very quick on startup [CC nair and then unless he goes for immediate SH uair, all his options are quite slow in the air - they're potent against Link because he can do them from a dash, so if you put him in a spot where he can't dash at us, he doesn't have space to get the aerials going].

Maybe the best way to explain it is that old saying, Keep your friends close and your enemies closer? I dunno, maybe I'm saying nonsense, but if it helps someone in the MU, that's something I guess.
After reading this strategy for Falcon, I liked the sound of it. Tonight I put it to the test. I have a friend I met recently who mains Falcon. He's better than me skill wise, he would usually 2 stock and sometimes 3 stock my Link and he plays and moves very fast which I have a hard time dealing with. After applying the stuff you talked about I saw instant improvement, suddenly we are now having much much closer games. He dashdances a lot and any time he did, I didn't approach at all, just threw bombs and rang at him until he got impatient and approached. You're very correct about our U tilt, I was beating tons of his approaches with U tilt. Other things that worked well was well spaced falling Nairs or I would even Fair if I had a read and got the timing right.

I 100% agree about keeping Falcon close. Any time I broke his movement and he tried to go toe to toe with me I would win neutral with heavy punishes and solid combs. Once he was in this situation his only offensive options were to try to slip in Dair or Nair and since I already had control and pressure they were easy to beat with U tilt. The only thing I think we really need to watch for in trying to be close is his grab, I got tech chase grabbed pretty hard a few times when I wasn't careful but fortunately Falcon's grab range is pretty eh
 

Thor

Smash Champion
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Sep 26, 2013
Messages
2,009
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UIUC [school year]. MN [summer]
After reading this strategy for Falcon, I liked the sound of it. Tonight I put it to the test. I have a friend I met recently who mains Falcon. He's better than me skill wise, he would usually 2 stock and sometimes 3 stock my Link and he plays and moves very fast which I have a hard time dealing with. After applying the stuff you talked about I saw instant improvement, suddenly we are now having much much closer games. He dashdances a lot and any time he did, I didn't approach at all, just threw bombs and rang at him until he got impatient and approached. You're very correct about our U tilt, I was beating tons of his approaches with U tilt. Other things that worked well was well spaced falling Nairs or I would even Fair if I had a read and got the timing right.

I 100% agree about keeping Falcon close. Any time I broke his movement and he tried to go toe to toe with me I would win neutral with heavy punishes and solid combs. Once he was in this situation his only offensive options were to try to slip in Dair or Nair and since I already had control and pressure they were easy to beat with U tilt. The only thing I think we really need to watch for in trying to be close is his grab, I got tech chase grabbed pretty hard a few times when I wasn't careful but fortunately Falcon's grab range is pretty eh
A reminder that Falcon is fast enough to certainly punish bomb pulls on prediction and sometimes from his dash dance on reaction. If you face another a Falcon and seem to be getting knee'd for pulling bombs, it'd be because bomb pulls take almost a full second. Should that happen, a reminder that harassing with boomerangs [which are still rather punishable - Falcon can use first-hit nair to hit the boomerang and use the second hit to hit you] and even more patience is one option [although not as effective], and also just a simple reminder that just because it feels decently effective to not go in doesn't mean you CAN'T go in - I believe constantly trying to approach heavily favors Falcon, but if you approach once in a while, you can often apply some pressure that may make holes in their dash dance or approaches more obvious, which would help you punish them.

However, I am glad that my original advice helped out at least a little.
 
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