Welcome to the third episode of my Smash Underdog series! In this series, I’ll be taking a look at some of the lesser talked about names in Smash speculation. The purpose of this series is to get readers hooked on the idea of these characters appearing in Smash hopefully one day.
For today’s Underdog episode, we have a literal dog taking the spotlight. He’s traversed through fire, been made out of wool, and will do anything to help his green dinosaur buddy. When it comes to reliable brown-spotted canines, you can’t get any better than the Yoshi series’ very own Poochy!
Who is Poochy?
First Appearance: Super Mario World 2: Yoshi’s Island (1995)
Latest Appearance: Yoshi’s Crafted World (2019)
Latest Appearance: Yoshi’s Crafted World (2019)
Poochy is a cute and cuddly dog from the Yoshi series who aids Yoshi in his adventures. First appearing in Super Mario World 2 Yoshi’s Island, Poochy appears in a few levels where Yoshi can ride him to pass through dangerous terrain. Yoshi is able to jump on top of Poochy as he runs through fire and other damaging environments. Although his role in the first Yoshi game was fairly small, Poochy would become a frequent character in the Yoshi series as he would appear in entries such as Yoshi’s Story and Yoshi’s New Island.
Despite being a relatively minor character during his debut, Poochy has become a much more prominent character within the past few years alone. He’s had much bigger roles in the recent Yoshi games and the 3DS port of Woolly World was even called Poochy & Yoshi's Woolly World to reflect that. Poochy even had an important role in Super Mario Odyssey where he appears in the various hint art pictures used to find certain power moons. Nintendo even released a bunch of adorable short videos that feature Yoshi and Poochy to coincide with the release of Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World, so even they know the marketing power of cute little canines.
“I want to get into the Yoshi series, where should I start?”
The first Yoshi’s Island game is available to Nintendo Switch Online subscribers via the SNES Collection. It is also one of the games on the SNES Classic if you happen to have one.
For the games that more prominently feature Poochy, there is also Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World on the 3DS as well as Yoshi’s Crafted World on the Nintendo Switch.
Poochy’s Chances for Smash
I’ll list some of the things Poochy has going for and against his inclusion in Smash Bros. as a whole:
- Poochy is a rising Nintendo star, having important roles in the newer Yoshi games as well as Super Mario Odyssey. He’s even had some guest appearances in Tetris Attack and the Nintendo themed pack for Minecraft on the Wii U.
- In regards to additional Yoshi characters, Poochy is one of the frontrunners (if not the frontrunner) thanks to his role in the series.
- When it comes to other series getting additional reps, the Yoshi series may have lower priority since there aren’t many people clamoring for another Yoshi character.
- As far as additional Yoshi characters go, Poochy would have to compete with Kamek for a slot.
Why Should Poochy be in Smash?
I dare you to look him in the eyes and say “you don’t deserve to be in Smash”
The Yoshi series is a very popular and long-running Nintendo series that only has one character in Smash at the moment; of the series who debuted in Smash in Smash 64, the Yoshi series is one of two series (the other being F-Zero) to only have one playable character. With a lot of colorful and unique candidates to choose from, there is a ton of potential to be found in the Yoshi games when it comes to another character.
Poochy has shown himself to be a big star in the Yoshi games. He’s a fast and energetic pup so he could have a very fun and powerful moveset. Having a playable dog who does things like bark, bite, sniff, and lick things would also be very unique. Yes, we do have Duck Hunt and Isabelle but when it comes to having a true playable dog character, Poochy is hard to beat.
Neutral B: Poochy Bite
Poochy jumps forward a bit and takes a big ol’ chomp into the opponent. From there you can keep mashing the B button to keep biting the opponent with your tongue. It’s nowhere near as painful looking as Wario’s chomp, but it has similar properties such as acting as a grab. One difference from Wario’s chomp is that you can’t hold down the button to lengthen the time of the mouth grab. Once you press the B button, Poochy will do a little jump animation and start biting whoever he comes in contact with.
Side-B: Poochy Charge
Poochy charges either to the left or right like he does in the Yoshi games. Anyone who Poochy plows into will be sent flying and he’ll keep running even after hitting an opponent. The longer Poochy runs, the more damage and knockback the opponent will receive. This move has a very brief startup (about half a second) similar to Terry’s Burn Knuckle, but has a lot of endlag if you hit a wall or decide to stop running. During this attack, both enemies as well as allies in team battle can jump on top of Poochy’s back to ride on him similar to the Gogoat Pokeball (due to his back having no hitbox). This can lead to some unexpected team attack combinations as well as a surprise stage KO if your opponent accidentally jumps onto Poochy. Also Poochy has brief super armor for the first second or so to mimic how he is able to walk over things like lava in his original games. He can also run over certain stage hazards like spikes and lava while performing this move.
Up-B: Poochy Leap
Poochy leaps high up into the air like he does in the Yoshi games when he reaches a wall. This move has similar properties to Banjo’s up-B, though the bottom of Poochy won’t hurt enemies like Banjo’s springpad does. The actual thrust into the air can hurt opponents since Poochy's head has a hitbox during the attack and Poochy can still attack with aerials even after using it.
Down-B: Poochy Pup
Poochy spawns a Poochy Pup that will run across the stage and start biting an opponent. The bite does not cause knockback or flinching and just deals damage. Think of this move as a combination of Bowser Jr’s Mechakoopa down-B and Olimar’s Pikmin. Like with Olimar’s Pikmin, the opponent can keep attacking to get the little Poochy off of him (though the Poochy will just comically disappear and not die like the Pikmin).
Final Smash: Never Enough Pooch
I did a Google search of that phrase and it’s almost never been used in the history of the internet
Poochy charges at the opponent which sends them into a cinematic. During the cutscene, a ton of small Poochy Pups jump on the opponent as Poochy goes in for one more charge which sends the opponent flying.
Pictured below are how I would imagine Poochy’s colors would look in Smash:
- First appearance is of course his default look in the Yoshi/Mario series.
- The black, blue, and pink costumes are based on the Poochy Pups which were introduced in Poochy and Yoshi’s Woolly World.
- The red, green, and yellow costumes are based on common colors of various Yoshis (plus Smash alts typically have those colors available to use in some form).
- The final costume would be a Woolly Poochy alt much like how Yoshi has an alt based on Yoshi’s Crafted World.
Stage: Rail-Yard Run
The Woolly World stage from SSB4 was one of the five stages from that game to not return in Ultimate. It is also the only Yoshi stage in the history of Smash not present in Ultimate. With Ultimate lacking a stage from Yoshi’s craft-based games, I thought that this could be fixed by introducing a stage from the most recent Yoshi adventure: Yoshi’s Crafted World.
Rail-Yard Run is the first level from Yoshi’s Crafted World. The stage in Smash would start as a side scrolling stage in a grassy area which then proceeds to a train ride through a cardboard city. All of the Yoshi stages in Smash are typically on lone islands so I thought having a side scrolling stage would help make Rail-Yard Run more unique.
Despite having a ton of great music to choose from, there are not that many Yoshi songs in Smash (only 14 in Ultimate). There is definitely room for improvement that can be fixed with Poochy’s inclusion, so here are some songs that can go along with Poochy’s release:
- SMW2: Above Ground
- SMW2: Underground
- SMW2: Big Boss
- SMW2: Baby Bowser
- Yoshi’s Woolly World: Knitty Knotty Windmill
- Yoshi’s Woolly World: Fluffin’ Puffin Babysitting
- Yoshi’s Crafted World: Main Theme
- Yoshi’s Crafted World: Rail-Yard Run (Instrumental)
- Yoshi’s Crafted World: Sand World
- Yoshi’s Crafted World: Space
- Yoshi’s Crafted World: Special Area
It took a while to publish but now I am finally done with the Poochy article! Even before the corona virus, I was going through a lot of personal issues during the creation of this article. With that said, I hope you all enjoyed it and are now more interested in Poochy!
Next time on Smash Underdogs: The strongest Street Fighter in the world.
Author’s Note: What are your thoughts on Yoshi series representation in Smash? Would you like to see Poochy make it into Smash one day? Let us know in the comments below!