What's wrong with ROB?

yohoos

Smash Apprentice
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Oct 13, 2011
Messages
109
#1
I played him a bit recently and I think he's pretty good. Anyone know why people don't play him? If he isn't good then what's not good about him?
 
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#2
Bad shield, can be poked super easy, might be possible to even poke him at full
Bad rolls + other OoS options are average or non-existent
No good anti-air options
Bad ground speed/DD
Generally slow/low priority aerials and slow jumpstart/aerial drifting/fast fall speed

Best defensive option is CC dsmash, can be escaped for frame advantage on the opponent's part reliably without good reaction time, just with MU knowledge to know when he can CC and thus when to tap up to escape dsmash on an approach. Alternatively good DI away can often just reset the situation for the opponent, maybe giving ROB more stage control but it's not a whole lot for trading damage and winning.

His projectile camping options have heavy cool down between uses, and one of them can be stolen from him. But he needs to use them so he can get the opponent past CC percent for boost-> fair so that he has something to approach with. Plus Powershielding is a thing so any character with a reliable shield and a player behind them with practice PSing ROBs projectiles, or just any character with a reflector, is going to do a good job of shutting down ROB's camping game. Plus laser is super telegraphed so you have to read where they try and avoid it. Just try to out camp a good fox SHDlasering. You figure a character whose primary strength Is having two specials devoted to projectile camping would be great at shutting that down, but nope, he'll just SH over gyro and/or laser. Or you can try aiming laser up to snipe the SH at its peak, but the hitbox is small and isn't in any one place for more than 1-2 frames. By the time you've hit him, he's probably tacked more on you. And he can mix up shine to reflect of course.

His combos generally rely on bad DI (fair/upair strings on most characters [nobody seems to DI these right often but when they do they get out immediately] or dsmash/nair into grab on fast fallers [DI away prevents this at most percents]), or rely on his dthrow, which is very good. But he isn't fast enough to abuse his above average grab reach. Fortunately boost->fair/upair lead to grab pretty reliable unless they CC, which is why you should camp them until you can beat CC; see above about projectiles.

I don't think it's so much that he's bad, just outclassed. Samus does almost everything ROB does better.
CC? Check, she's heavier, has two CC options, not just one, that cause knockdown immediately, and neither loses to preemptive SDI.
Poking options? Her Ftilt and fsmash both reach farther, come out faster, do more damage than ROB's ftilt/fsmash, while still causing knockdown at the same percents, still being aimable, and still being safe on shield. And you don't have to sweetspot for max damage.
Airdash? She has zair. It doesn't lead into follow-ups as well, granted, but it covers the same area safer than ROB can with airdash.
Camping options? Her missiles pack more knockback, have less end lag and less cool-down between repeated uses, unless she doesn't have platforms. Plus she has a long-range early-kill move in charge shot. She can kill without almost ever leaving neutral.
OoS options? Not even close. Samus has better rolls, a godlike WD, and an actual up-b OoS. And a better shield too.
Ease of escaping combos/juggles? She's slightly floatier, and has a sex-kick Nair that comes out faster than ROB's fastest aerial. ROB's combo escape options are: mix-up boosts/DJing and hope the opponent isn't fast enough.
Anti-airs? In addition to better fundamentals like DDing and WD back for good spacing (generally good for beating SH approaches), she has utilt, ice fair and to a lesser extend, Ice usmash and SH nair. ROB's anti-air options, besides just trying to outspace with DDs, are... SH fair? Much slower and doesn't linger as long as Samus's nair. SH upair? Slower even more, doesn't linger in front at all. His only grounded anti-air is maaaayybe up angled fsmash, which is slow to start, end, and only lingers for 2 frames.
Combos? ROB wins here for the most part. Grab is easier to land and throws are a little easier to follow up on. But it hardly matters because Samus just needs to get the opponent away from her or offstage so she can start setting up her godlike zoning game again.



ROB has good things too though, don't get me wrong. He just has too many things to take advantage of for him to be a top contender as a whole.

At least he can CG spacies 0-100 into an upsmash for a kill, regardless of DI. Too bad platforms get in the way.
 
Last edited:

yohoos

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Oct 13, 2011
Messages
109
#3
Is ROB's uptilt not a good anti-air? Also can't a well spaced boost fair put him outside CC punishes? Didn't realize you could SDi out of dsmash though.
 
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#4
Utilt covers only the space directly above him. By anti airs I was referring to moves that stuff aerial approaches, like falcon approaching with a SH nair or something along those lines.
Also you can't "space boost fair well". It gives you too much momentum. Even if you hit with the tip of his fists on the last frame before hitting the ground you still slide well within their reach. Crossing them up works well, but if they are spacing themselves properly that is going to happen very rarely.
 

Baky

Smash Journeyman
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Mar 18, 2008
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#5
New players that I face always assure me that my ROB is my best character but the people I've played against for a while see clearly through his gimmicks. ROB is a very frustrating character to play when people are able to exploit all of the things mentioned by DrinkingFood.

One last thing to note, his overrated recovery. While his recovery can get you back from just about anywhere off-stage, the limited options off-stage make your recovering really predictable and exploitable. If you don't make the right choice with recovering you'll be edgeguarded really easily IMO. I've faced Roys who wall me off from returning on stage pretty well.
 

yohoos

Smash Apprentice
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Oct 13, 2011
Messages
109
#6
Hmm well I can see where ROB does lack some defensive play but since I've only recently started checking him out I guess I haven't run into some of these problems yet. But I also personally play with a more aggressive/zoning style so I don't really care for projectile cooldowns and bad rolls (already use to it from my main Falcon) plus he's heavy enough to fly back from quite a bit of percentage (I use to think his recovery was godly but now I just see it as above average), and his aerial movement is awesome. His grounded movement is OK I would say, most projectile characters aren't too fast anyway but the range of his tilts are pretty good.

I am concerned that eventually people will figure out the gimmicks of his approaches though and that would bother me quite a bit if they stop working. I approach generally with boost fair or boost nair because I assume that if spaced/timed correctly they would be safe on shield. I feel like switching it up between these two should provide decent pressure on the opponent. Also would ftilt angled not work as an anti-air as well it seems like you didn't even give that move an honorable mention lol. Overall it seems like ROB is a very confused character with several play options rushing, zoning, camping but doesn't really shine in any one area (gimping maybe?).

Also I hate playing samus because while her defensive game is amazing I hate how slow, floaty, and campy she is but that's just me.
 

Sarth

Smash Rookie
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Apr 2, 2014
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#7
DrinkingFood covered a lot of what is wrong with R.O.B. but in my opinion if you change up your play style from that of a campy/projectile based one to one that is vastly more aggressive you'll achieve more success. Of course using lasers/gyro's is key, but you simply have to constantly mix up when you're going to use them. I've been playing R.O.B for a little while now and I have a lot of success with him being super aggressive.
 

Ryan.

Smash Lord
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#8
I don't think anything is wrong with him. I actually had trouble facing a level 9 computer R.O.B. yesterday, being new to Project M. He just doesn't fit a lot of people's play styles, I guess.
 
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#9
DrinkingFood covered a lot of what is wrong with R.O.B. but in my opinion if you change up your play style from that of a campy/projectile based one to one that is vastly more aggressive you'll achieve more success. Of course using lasers/gyro's is key, but you simply have to constantly mix up when you're going to use them. I've been playing R.O.B for a little while now and I have a lot of success with him being super aggressive.
Success against who exactly? Level 9 CPUs? Your best friend? Your little sister? Being super aggressive against good opponents doesn't work if they outpace boost fair or have good anti-air options.
 

Dandizzle

Smash Journeyman
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#10
There isn't much innovation left to be made with the current R.O.B. Neat things like fair jumping, footstool combos and hell there has been so much done with the gyro but it doesn't really overcome his shortcomings as a character. Camping isn't viable because his projectiles have cooldowns and full agression isn't strong because he doesn't have the tools to chip a shield or do it fast enough for the opponent to not see it coming from a mile away. The best way to play R.O.B is probably a mixture of the two, but the mixture of the two play styles doesn't make R.O.B's game not have holes. Its a combination of two styles that don't work and together they only make R.O.B so much better. You can say a hyper agressive style works, but the only way for your claim to be valid is with videos and good tourney placement. Computers, training mode, and low level players don't showcase R.O.B's problems like a top level player would.
 
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#11
Fair jumping is definitely a thing, but I don't think there are any ROBs who consistently use footstooling in gameplay against good opponents. Partially because it's not that practiced and partially because it's hard to land and not that great against somebody who is spacing properly.

Also ROB definitely has the tools to chip at shields but it's not really safe. Best way I've found is jumping relatively high (further than a SH at least) then crossing up with boost Nairs. Boost bairs only work if they aren't spacing outspacing boost fair, which reaches farther, plus boost bairs have less flexibility in drifting and less priority in front. The issue with boost nairs is that going so high is super telegraphed and gives them plenty of reaction time to space themselves so that you either miss or hit too early before you land which makes the nair much less safe. Plus cross-ups are not always a good thing. Boost nair cross-up is relatively safe, but if you have center stage, you give it up by going for a boost nair cross-up for a little bit of shield damage.



On another note, ROB has a lot of awful stages. Any place with lots of platform coverage, especially if they are low platforms, is awful for him. WW, FoD, YI (brawl), YS (Melee), Lylat, BF, it's very hard to ban 3 of these and not have the opponent still pick their best stage while picking one of ROB's worst.
 

Dandizzle

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#12
I meant shield pressure wasn't exactly safe but yea he can do it like pretty much everyone else in the cast. It was hard for me to list the problems with R.O.B in a couple sentences. Btw it is kinda hilarious how many dumb nair kills people give me considering the moves is so telegraphed, I don't know how you couldn't see it coming :).
 

Sarth

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#13
Success against who exactly? Level 9 CPUs? Your best friend? Your little sister? Being super aggressive against good opponents doesn't work if they outpace boost fair or have good anti-air options.
I don't have to much experience facing top-level opponents but I have noticed that in general being fairly aggressive works. I'm gonna try and play Emukiller, even if it's in friendlies (which I know isn't the same as tourney), this weekend and I'll see how I fair. I also played Inui and Raptor (a Yoshi-main) and felt pretty good this weekend. Not saying they are top-players, but at this stage in the game they are better than I am and I find them to be good competition.

I'm still working to get better with him, but he is fading into a secondary character for specific match-ups. Even still I think R.O.B benefits from an aggressive play-style, if for nothing else than the surprise factor. I don't think many people know the MU, but even if they do they are going to expect a campy/projectile based match. I think the mix-up potential for R.O.B is there.
 

Sarth

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#15
Being aggressive against Mewtwo as ROB using boosts is a very quick way to get utilted
I will keep that in mind if I can play him this weekend.

Also, I'm curious as to why you think Lylatt and FoD are bad for R.O.B. I get the other ones, but I enjoy FoDs high ceilings and the fact that the platforms lower to dmsash range and then completely out of sight. His angling ability on Lylatt always draws me in, especially if I'm facing a character who suffers on that stage historically.
 
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#16
Lylat is bad because the lack of edge walls prevents ROB from sweetspotting it with side-b; the slopes prevent him from using his RoboDashDash tech, which is a perfect waveland out of side-b that is very good from the edge for getting back to center stage quickly or for grabbing a grounded gyro quickly while wavelanding for further in or back out to the edge (I am the only ROB who uses this as far as I have seen though); the heavy platform coverage prevents him from coming in high for boost nair cross-ups; and platforms also make his dthrow chaingrabs on fast fallers much much shorter- the lower the platforms the shorter the chain grabs become, and the more coverage there is the easier it is for them to be under one when you dthrow them.

FoD has bad platforms for the same reasons, except they are worse because they can end a chaingrab on any character at any percent if they are low enough, whereas lylat platforms end chaingrabs at specific, consistent percents. Also, ROB likes low ceilings not high ones. His usmash/DACUS and nair/boost nair are his most reliable killers besides gimping, and both kill off the top. He also has uthrow which kills off the top in case he can't land a kill any other way and ends up grabbing them between 120-190 (aprox minimum kill percents for uthrow on FD depending on character). ROB also has a hard time while grounded hitting opponents who are on medium height FoD platforms unless he gets really close, reason being most of his moves hit too low, or only directly above him. This wouldn't be as much of problem if he could projectile camp consistently, but the stage is too short for that, which is another issue with it. The top platform is also one of the few that interfere with gyro-jumping, which is just full hop uncharged gyro shot into a z-catch or AGT before landing.
 

Sarth

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#17
Well I am quickly realizing I have a lot to learn about R.O.B. These are things I either wouldn't have thought about or wouldn't have factored into my stage selection. Thankfully FoD, Lylat, or any of the other stages you previously mentioned aren't ones I normally pick in the first place as R.O.B, but that's mainly luck that I don't normally choose them. Got to get in the lab something awful.
 

Oracle

Smash Master
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#21
i actually really like yoshis and warioware for rob, since you kill pretty early and thats one of his only advantages. depends on the matchup.
 
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