|“||The Final Smash is a secret skill that can be performed but once…and only after obtaining an item called the Smash Ball, which is a precious item, indeed.||”|
|—Smash Bros. DOJO!|
A Final Smash (最後の切りふだ Saigo no Kirifuda, roughly "The Final Trump Card" or Last Resort) is a Special Move introduced in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and which has since returned for Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Final Smashes are incredibly powerful in comparison to most other attacks, generally leaving the user invincible for the move's duration, and, if properly executed, usually have the capacity to KO at least one opponent. Final Smashes performed correctly will give a great advantage, and may help to catch up to others in the game, or vice versa.
To perform a Final Smash, a player must either destroy a Smash Ball or acquire a "Pity Final Smash". Upon the destruction of the Smash Ball, the character will be engulfed in a multi-colored aura and their eyes will glow. If too much damage is taken, the Smash Ball will fly out of the character, giving their opponents another opportunity to gain a Final Smash. To perform a Final Smash, simply press the Special Move Button. Multiple Smash Balls can't appear in a match at the same time, but another can reappear after the Final Smash is finished.
In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, a weaker Final Smash can be performed after filling their FS Meter, which gets filled by inflicting or taking damage. No two Final Smashes occur simultaneously in this mode.
Some Final Smashes temporarily slow down stage elements, such as platform movement or motion within the background.
It was revealed in an interview with Nintendo's president, Satoru Iwata, that Masahiro Sakurai had intended for Final Smashes to be included in the original Super Smash Bros., and claims that he has proof, in that there were recorded voices for when characters used their Final Smash. However, due to the N64's power limitations, it wouldn't be implemented until Brawl.
Pity Final Smash
A Pity Final Smash (Easy Final Smash in SSB4 and Ultimate) occurs when a player is KO'd and is 5 points behind compared to the current leader (thereby allowing the player in 2nd place to earn one, provided the gap is large enough). This player respawns with the ability to perform a Final Smash. This Final Smash cannot be dropped by the player. Pity Final Smashes can be disabled only by turning Final Smashes off completely; setting overall item frequency to 'None' alone will not be enough.
While Final Smashes tend to be unique among characters, there are certain categories they can be sorted into. The five categories are:
- Directional - These Final Smashes launch an attack in a single direction. Their damage output is often low but their range is high. Depending on the Final Smash, the direction can be controlled, while others are fixed. This kind of Final Smash has a blind spot, usually behind the attacker, where targets can hide. An example of this is the Mario Finale, Mario's Final Smash.
- Focused - These Final Smashes affect nearby opponents in any direction. Targets can avoid the move by getting out of range, so they're mostly effective in smaller stages. An example of this is Puff Up, Jigglypuff's Final Smash. There are two flavours of Focused Final Smashes.
- Trapping - These Final Smashes attack a certain area, grab anyone inside said area (or just a single character), and lay down an inescapable beating. They generally have a small initial range and will fail if there are no targets caught, but their attack power is often high. An example of this is Triforce Slash, Toon Link's Final Smash (which is also directional since it heads in one direction). Some trapping Final Smashes such as Captain Falcon's Blue Falcon are cinematic.
- Stage-Wide - These Final Smashes affect the whole stage, leaving little or no hiding spots. However, they may be less effective on larger stages. An example of this is PK Starstorm, Ness's Final Smash.
- Transformation - These Final Smashes only affect the user, who can then rampage around and cause damage. Some transformations buff up the character's existing moveset, while others use a different set of controls. The transformation is unaffected by all status effects except slow time. It is generally up to the player themselves to deal massive damage with the Final Smash, or else the entire move will be ineffective. An example of this is the Landmaster, Fox, Falco, and Wolf's Final Smash. This category of final smash has been discontinued in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and all Transformation Final Smashes were turned into Trapping, Stage-Wide, or Directional Final Smashes. Examples of these are Wario, Sonic, and Mr. Game & Watch, respectively.
Certain Final Smashes can fall into more than one category, such as the aforementioned Triforce Slash (Directional + Trapping), Ike's Great Aether (Focused + Trapping, then Stage-wide), Cloud Strife's Omnislash (Directional + Trapping, then Stage-wide), Marth and Lucina's Critical Hit (Directional + Trapping), and Roy's Critical Hit (Focused + Trapping).
List of Final Smashes
Out of the 37 Final Smashes in Brawl, 11 are Transformation, 6 are Trapping, 5 are Focused, 8 are Directional, and 7 are Stage-Wide.
Out of the 59 (Ryu has two) Final Smashes in 3DS and Wii U, 5 are Stage-Wide, 13 are Transformation, 20 are Trapping, 16 are Directional, and 4 are Focused.
Out of the 86 Final Smashes in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, 15 are Stage-Wide, 48 are Trapping, 5 are Focused, and 20 are Directional (Diddy Kong’s Final Smash is both Stage-Wide and Trapping, while Roy’s is both Focused and Trapping).
- Some Final Smash glitches involve the regenerating portion of the Bridge of Eldin stage, like R.O.B.'s Infinite Final Smash, and Jigglypuff's Giga-Jiggly glitch. This is not possible in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as the stage freezes while performing it.
- In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, if a player is knocked down to 0 HP during a stamina match while in a transformation Final Smash, then they will not technically die and lay there as a "corpse" if there are at least 2 "alive" characters in the game.
- Under the circumstances that a player is reduced to 0 HP while using a transformation Final Smash in a stamina battle, the player will revert to normal form. Despite being at 0 HP, the player can still move their character and play normally until they are hit another time, which then KO's their character. The glitch is only known to occur in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.
- In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, lightning effects will occur on the HUD upon grabbing a Smash Ball.