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Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS Wii U Mario.png

As Nintendo's biggest mascot, it's no surprise that Mario returns for the fourth generation of the company's crossover series. Like in every multiplayer game he has been in, Mario is all about ease of use and balance, with some emphasis on comboing. His weight, speed and power sets the standard for every other characters, and his moveset is simple enough for newcomers, while varied enough to make him remain interesting to veteran players. While Mario doesn't have relentless offensive power like Little Mac or defensive keepaway abilities like Robin, he can function well with these playstyles and many more. Mario's main flaw is simply his lack of specialization, which makes it increasingly difficult to stay relevant as newer additions to the roster causes a noticeable power creep, like Luigi having more versatile combo ability, Sonic having better mobility, Bowser having more power, and Shulk having more range. Nevertheless, Mario is a reliable, solid character with increasing and heavy tournament representation, and is unarguably one of the best characters overall.

Basic attributes[edit]

Mario's statistics are all, well, average. From his weight to his jumps to his dash speed, Mario is the standard that every other character is measured against. Even though Mario is not exactly dead center on attribute lists, you can get a good idea of the average power and speed of characters in the game. Mario's dodges are not notably fast, and they don't cover a lot of distance either. Perhaps a feature that is not so average is Mario's ability to wall jump, which will certainly help to extend the vertical distance travelled while recovering.


Moveset Analysis[edit]

Standard Attacks

Control Attack Info
Wii U GamePad / Pro Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk Wii Remote (sideways)
Wii Classic Controller GameCube Controller Nintendo 3DS
A button(+A buttonA buttonA button) A button(+A buttonA buttonA button) 2 button(+2 button2 button2 button) Basic Combo Mario punches with each hand, then kicks. This moves is fast and good for getting foes off you if they're too close for comfort.
A button(+A buttonA buttonA button) A button(+A buttonA buttonA button) A button(+A buttonA buttonA button)
(Left lstick or Right lstick)+A button (Left nunchuk or Right nunchuk)+A button (Left dpad or Right dpad)+2 button Forward Roundhouse Mario does a roundhouse kick forward, which can be angled up or down if you tilt the movement input slightly in the respective direction. It has good range and knocks opponents moderately far, which can help set up an edgeguard. It is also an adequate move to pivot cancel into, since Forward Smash is best saved for KOs.
(Left lstick or Right lstick)+A button (Left control or Right control)+A button (Left cpad or Right cpad)+A button
Up lstick+A button Up nunchuk+A button Up dpad+2 button Uppercut Mario does a spinning uppercut. The move can chain into itself at low percents and launches opponents just high enough to combo into your aerials. It is one of Mario's main combo starters, with a quick string of u-tilts at 0% being able to rack up about 20%. Though not as much as in Brawl, it can sometimes be a quick, desperate KO move when your opponent's percentage is very high and everything else is stale.
Up lstick+A button Up control+A button Up cpad+A button
Down lstick+A button Down nunchuk+A button Down dpad+2 button Crouch Kick Mario does a crouching roundhouse kick that has moderate endlag. It is a decent launcher with similarly weak knockback to his Strong Up Attack, but it has a bit more range in exchange for being slower. Its low trajectory can let it poke through the shields of more defensive players. Its relatively poor speed means that you can't use this liberally, so be careful when committing to it.
Down lstick+A button Down control+A button Down cpad+A button
A button while dashing A button while dashing 2 button while dashing SRushdown Kick Mario kicks while sliding. The move has a fairly long duration and moves Mario forward, being stronger at the beginning of the slide than at the end. It can be used to punish missed attacks when you're just out of range, but the duration and knockback of the slide makes it difficult to get any follow-ups.
A button while dashing A button while dashing A button while dashing

Smash Attacks

Control Attack Info
Wii U GamePad / Pro Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk Wii Remote (sideways)
Wii Classic Controller GameCube Controller Nintendo 3DS
Smash (Left lstick or Right lstick)+A button Smash (Left nunchuk or Right nunchuk)+A button (Left dpad or Right dpad)+1 button+2 button Burning Palm Mario reels back and sends out his palm, creating a strong fireball that surrounds his hand. A pretty straightforward smash attack which KOs at normal percentages. The initial animation can let Mario narrowly evade attacks by reeling back, and the fireball lets him hit enemies just out of range. However, it is fairly slow, so it is best used to punish whiffed attacks and careless recoveries rather than as a move one randomly throws out hoping for a KO.
Smash (Left lstick or Right lstick)+A button Smash (Left control or Right control)+A button Smash (Left cpad or Right cpad)+A button
Smash Up lstick+A button Smash Up nunchuk+A button Up dpad+1 button+2 button Headbutt Mario swipes his head in an arc above him, knocking enemies skyward. Mario's head is invincible during the attack, making it a strong anti-air. The move can be used to end early Up Tilt chains to rack up more damage. It is also a decent upward KO move.
Smash Up lstick+A button Smash Up control+A button Smash Up cpad+A button
Smash Down lstick+A button Smash Down nunchuk+A button Down dpad+1 button+2 button Breakdance Sweep Mario does a breakdance, hitting foes in front of and behind him. Of Mario's three smashes, this is his fastest smash attack. It does have less knockback than his other smashes, but the speed more than makes up for it, and it can still KO if unstaled. The multi-directional nature of the attack also makes it good for hitting foes out of their roll dodges. Usually you should use this attack simply to get opponents offstage as it sends foes away horizontally, setting up an edgeguard scenario on your favor.
Smash Down lstick+A button Smash Down control+A button Smash Down cpad+A button

Air Attacks

Control Attack Info
Wii U GamePad / Pro Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk Wii Remote (sideways)
Wii Classic Controller GameCube Controller Nintendo 3DS
A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png 2 buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Drop Kick Mario kicks, hitting any nearby enemies. This move hits the hardest at the very beginning, with both damage and knockback gradually decaying with time. This is one of Mario's best aerials, as it covers a pretty wide range and is very fast, with nearly unnoticeable startup and endlag. It is good for intercepting midair opponents if you're uncertain that other air attacks will hit, as well as for air-to-ground assaults. You can also use it defensively, using the immediate knockback of the move to get out of an enemy's combos or a crowd of foes.
A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png
Right lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Right nunchuk+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Right dpad+2 buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Meteor Punch Mario swipes his fist downward. It is a moderately strong meteor smash for the first half of the attack, which hits enemies straight down, strong enough to KO most characters without excellent recoveries past 70%. After the starting sweetspot, the move deals weaker horizontal knockback instead, which is easier to recover from. It is a slightly risky edgeguard, but landing the meteor smash part of the move offstage will all but guarantee a KO.
Right lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Right control+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Right cpad+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png
Left lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Left nunchuk+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Left dpad+2 buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Back Kick Mario kicks backwards with both legs. Another one of Mario's excellent aerials, this attack is both quick and has good reach, making it an awesome spacing tool to keep opponents at bay. At low to mid percentages against certain characters, it can combo into itself. It is also one of Mario's most reliable edgeguarding moves, and can even serve as a KO move if left unstaled at around 112%.
Left lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Left control+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Left cpad+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png
Up lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Up nunchuk+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Up dpad+2 buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Backflip Kick Mario kicks in an arc upward. This is an attack you will use very frequently in combos. It has weak knockback, great speed and good horizontal range, making it naturally strong at juggling opponents. Use this liberally to rack up guaranteed damage on your opponents.
Up lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Up control+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Up cpad+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png
Down lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Down nunchuk+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Down dpad+2 buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Mario Tornado Mario spins rapidly, dealing multiple hits before when final strike that knocks enemies skyward. It's not particularly powerful, but it can do quite a bit of damage if all hits connect. You can use it as a finisher to Up Air strings, keeping your foes above you for possible follow-ups. It is also particularly good in free-for-alls, as it has a large enough hitbox to draw in multiple opponents at once. The move actually has special hitboxes when it hits the ground, which can catch nearby opponents dropping their shield or trying to punish your landing animation.
Down lstick+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Down control+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png Down cpad+A buttonArcade-Modifier-Air.png

Throws

Control Attack Info
Wii U GamePad / Pro Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk Wii Remote (sideways)
Wii Classic Controller GameCube Controller Nintendo 3DS
A button after grab A button after grab 2 button after grab Nosebutt Mario hits the grabbed foe with his nose. Decently damaging, although not particularly fast.
A button after grab A button after grab A button after grab
Right lstick after grab Right nunchuk after grab Right dpad after grab Spin Throw Mario turns around once and throws the grabbed opponent forwards. It is a quick and straightforward throw simply meant to keep foes out or get them offstage.
Right lstick after grab Right control after grab Right cpad after grab
Left lstick after grab Left nunchuk after grab Left dpad after grab Spin Chuck Mario turns around multiple times and throws the grabbed foe backwards. This is Mario's strongest throw in terms of both damage and knockback, but also the slowest, so you're likely to get hit before you can finish executing the move. It's another move to get opponents offstage, and serves as Mario's sole KO throw at high percentages.
Left lstick after grab Left control after grab Left cpad after grab
Up lstick after grab Up nunchuk after grab Up dpad after grab Upwards Hurl Mario tosses the grabbed foe upwards. This move has awkward knockback, in that it does too much knockback to be used in combos reliably, and too little to be a good KO move. There's not much reason to use it over Down Throw other than on fastfallers at low percentages.
Up lstick after grab Up control after grab Up cpad after grab
Down lstick after grab Down nunchuk after grab Down dpad after grab Throwdown Mario throws the grabbed foe into the ground, bouncing them back up. Arguably Mario's best throw, since it keeps the thrown opponent close enough to easily follow-up at low percentages. You can easily get an Up Tilt juggle going, or simply use a quick smash attack to knock them away for raw damage.
Down lstick after grab Down control after grab Down cpad after grab

Special Attacks[edit]

Control Attack Info
Wii U GamePad / Pro Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk Wii Remote (sideways)
Wii Classic Controller GameCube Controller Nintendo 3DS
B button B button 1 button Fireball Mario throws out a fireball that causes 4% damage. The fireball behaves like in its home series, bouncing along the ground. This simple projectile is what you should be throwing out whenever you're not close to an enemy. The bouncing trajectory of the fireball makes it impossible to duck under, although it is easily avoided by jumping over. It is still pretty spammable, so throw out fireballs whenever it is safe to deal chip damage as well as to frustrate your foes. Be sure to mix up your fireball trajectories by throwing them either standing or from different jump heights.
B button B button B button
Fast Fireball Mario throws out smaller, weaker fireballs that shoot across the screen in a straight line. The damage and knockback depends on the distance the fireball travels, decreasing more the further the fireball is from Mario. This move serves a similar purpose to the default Fireball, which is to build up damage and harass opponents. While the fireball loses its unique trajectory, it is easier to hit characters with good air control who can easily evade the ground-bound default fireballs. Its fast speed also makes it easier to disrupt enemy attacks on reaction.
Fire Orb After a brief delay, Mario creates a large orb of fire that moves a short distance, doing multiple hits to foes caught in its fiery vortex. While Mario's other fireballs are used to annoy opponents from afar, the Fire Orb is best used to discourage enemies from staying too close. While the orb doesn't move very far, it takes up a lot of area and lasts moderately long, limiting your foes' options at close range against you. However, the startup delay of the move gives opponents an opening to strike, and makes deliberately hitting opponents with the Fire Orb a bit difficult. Make a habit out of short hopping every time you use the Fire Orb, as you can still move laterally through the air during the startup animation, letting you position yourself better.
(Left lstick or Right lstick)+B button (Left nunchuk or Right nunchuk)+B button (Left dpad or Right dpad)+1 button Cape Mario swings his cape, briefly reflecting projectiles and thrown items as well as reversing the direction of any nearby opponent. Due to the interval between each cape use, this moves is better used to counter single, powerful projectiles like Samus's Charge Shot rather than continued projectile spam. Using it on opponents will often cause their attacks to miss and briefly disorient them, which can create an opening for your own attacks. However, it is best used to disrupt a recovering foe, and can often spell doom for them if they rely on a recovery with a set trajectory. The Cape can also help your own recovery, but it no longer gives you any distance as in past games, merely stalling your momentum in the air.
(Left lstick or Right lstick)+B button (Left control or Right control)+B button (Left cpad or Right cpad)+B button
Shocking Cape Mario discharges static electricity in his cape every time he swings it. The cape loses much of its original functionality, including reflecting projectiles, flipping foes or helping recovery, but gains a moderately powerful attack that knocks foes sideways. The move has pretty good range compared with the rest of Mario's kit, which compensates for the slight startup of the attack. Even though you can no longer use the cape to confuse opponents or mess up their recoveries, it can still function well for edgeguarding. The move's good reach and moderate power gives it a niche among Mario's aerial attacks, and can serve as a KO move offstage. Mario's Back Air Attack is still the safer bet for knocking enemies to the side, but the Shocking Cape's power gives it a slight edge over the Air Attack.
Gust Cape Mario's cape whips up a strong gale that pushes enemies away from him, but the cape itself does less damage. Mario can still reflect projectiles, flip opponents and stall his fall in the air. The wind generated by the cape has much more reach than the cape itself, but only at close-range will the gust have any significant effect. While the default Cape is great at sabotaging recoveries, the Gust Cape amplifies its utility by pushing recovering foes even further from the ledge in addition to reversing their momentum. It is also better at disorientating opponents with cape flips, as they will also be pushed away. Since the default Cape isn't used for its damage, the Gust Cape is pretty much a better substitute to it.
Up lstick+B button Up nunchuk+B button Up dpad+1 button Super Jump Punch Mario jumps diagonally into the air, hitting enemies in his path. This attack is Mario's designated recovery move, and is certainly adequate enough for this purpose. While its range is average, it suffers from a predictable recovery path, which lets foes intercept you easily. As it leaves you in helpless freefall when the move ends, it is not very good for purposefully attacking enemies, since you are very vulnerable if you miss or if there are other opponents nearby. If the stage has platforms within reach, you can reduce the time you're helpless for by using Super Jump Punch on to the platform. This attack becomes a decent move to knock away foes pressuring your shield in such situations.
Up lstick+B button Up control+B button Up cpad+B button
Super Jump Mario jumps up higher, but will not hit opponents at all on his way up. This is the typical "you can survive better, but you can't hurt people" up special variation much of the cast has, and the advantages and drawbacks of this custom special should be quite obvious. More distance means Mario can survive better, and the Super Jump can usually send Mario from being barely offscreen below the stage straight to the ledge. The loss of the attacking part of the move makes it an unviable out-of-shield option, unlike the default Super Jump Punch, and leaves you a bit more unprotected during recovery, but its speed somewhat compensates for it. The Super Jump also has an indirect offensive use, as it lets you go out really deep with your edgeguards, since you can safely extend further offstage than with the Super Jump Punch.
Explosive Punch Mario's uppercut becomes a powerful two-hit combo at the expense of recovery distance. The first hit knocks foes into the second hit, which is a fiery explosion with enough knockback to serve as a reliable KO move. Like the Super Jump, the change in usage caused by the differences of this special variant are quite apparent. Mario's doesn't have the best recovery, and using an Up Special that covers less distance can potentially reduce his survivability. However, the Explosive Punch provides Mario with a valuable asset: an additional KO move in Mario's limited arsenal. This means that Mario can rely less on his smash attacks to nab KOs, as well as secure KOs in the air. The initial hit of the move is fast enough to be used often as an attack, although Mario is still vulnerable if he misses. Despite the move leaving Mario with a worse recovery, its added power and the resulting increase in options makes this move definitely worth considering. If you love epic explosions, finishing combos in style, and can still make it back to the edge in most scenarios, then this is the move for you.
Down lstick+B button Down nunchuk+B button Down dpad+1 button F.L.U.D.D. Mario charges up the F.L.U.D.D., which he can then activate to propel a stream of water. The water pushes opponents away, but doesn't actually damage them or cause them to flinch. This is arguably the most situational move in Mario's arsenal, an odd addition in an otherwise beginner-friendly moveset. The main advantage of the F.L.U.D.D. over Mario's other edgeguard options is the ability to push opponents further from the stage without knocking them out of a helpless state, which can range from comedically and salt-inducingly effective to absolutely useless depending on the character you're battling and their proximity from the ledge. It can also mess up a foe's movement even when they're not helpless, potentially putting them in a disadvantageous position, but once again, these situations are unpredictable and seldom occur. Regardless, if you're serious about using the F.L.U.D.D., be sure to charge it whenever it is safe to do so, using R button to store a partial charge, since the move requires a full charge to have a significant effect.
Down lstick+B button Down control+B button Down cpad+B button
Scalding F.L.U.D.D. Instead of pressurizing the water inside the F.L.U.D.D., Mario boils it, causing the stream of water to damage foes instead of pushing them away. It takes less time to charge fully, but also sacrifices some range. Mario gains a new mid-range option that can hit multiple times, making it good for pressuring shields and dealing slight damage from a distance. The quick charge time means you can easily get full charge whenever there is a lull in the battle. While Mario doesn't really rely on the pushback of the default F.L.U.D.D., the comparatively poor reach of the Scalding F.L.U.D.D. hinders it from becoming a stronger projectile.
High-Pressure F.L.U.D.D. The High-Pressure F.L.U.D.D. takes longer to become fully-charged, but the pushback from the water jet is significantly increased, even doing recoil pushback to Mario himself. If you feel that Mario's F.L.U.D.D. just wasn't powerful enough to have a significant effect for edgeguarding, the High-Pressure F.L.U.D.D. just might fulfill your needs. Its increased knockback means that you are much more likely to prevent a foe from reaching the ledge. The recoil is a bit of a double-edged sword. While it does create some distance between you and your opponents, it prevents you from taking advantage of any confusion or disorientation caused by the water jet. The higher charge time also reduces the frequency you can use the move, although it is not hard to find space to charge it up bit by bit. The slower charge isn't really slow enough to seriously hinder the move's usage, so this version of F.L.U.D.D may just be the one.

Taunts

Control Info
Wii U GamePad / Pro Controller Wii Remote + Nunchuk Wii Remote (sideways)
Wii Classic Controller GameCube Controller Nintendo 3DS
Up dpad 1 button Up dpad+A button He grows bigger, as if he'd gotten a Super Mushroom.
Up dpad Up dpad Up dpad
(Left dpad or Right dpad) 1 button+2 button A button He spins around and takes off his hat.
(Left dpad or Right dpad) (Left dpad or Right dpad) (Left dpad or Right dpad)
Down dpad 2 button Down dpad+A button He flips over in midair and falls down.
Down dpad Down dpad Down dpad

Final Smash - Mario Finale[edit]

Mario unleashes two massive fireballs, which spin around as they expand vertically, forming a fiery cone. The fireballs do continuous damage to any fighters caught by it, while dragging them forward. It is important to note that the Final Smash KOs by carrying fighters off the screen by constant, minor knockback instead of one heavy-hitting blast. This means that while using the move on the edge of a stage facing the center will let you cover the most range, using it nearer to the blastline you're facing gives you a higher chance of KOing low percentage opponents.