This article is about Greninja's appearance in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. For other uses, see Greninja.

Greninja (ゲッコウガ, Gekkouga) was revealed as a newcomer, alongside Charizard's return as a veteran, during the Super Smash Bros. Wii U/ 3DS Nintendo Direct, on April 8th, 2014. A Pokémon-themed trailer was shown for both characters.

Greninja currently ranks 26th on the tier list. It is a very fast character with a wide variety of attack options and a fast grab. However, most of its attacks lack range and have fair amounts of lag. It does not possess many reliable KO moves either.



  • High speed on both ground and air.
  • Fast attacks that can easily interrupt enemies.
  • Second highest jump after Falco.
  • Aerial attacks with good priority.
  • Can wall-cling and wall jump.
  • Can crawl.
  • Grabs with low knockback that allow for many follow ups.
  • Good edge-guard and counter edge-guard games.
  • All Water Sword attacks and his grab are disjointed hitboxes.
  • Has two Meteor Smashes: Down Aerial and Substitute tilted down.
  • Water Shuriken can KO at high percentages if fully charged, and the its multi-hit properties can put pressure on the opponent.
  • Shadow Sneak is a very good KO move due its unpredictability and high knockback growth. It can also cancel the lag of all Greninja's Aerial Attacks if used in mid-air.
  • Hydro Pump's water have pushboxes, similar to Mario's F.L.U.D.D., that also cause minor damage.
  • Substitute can be tilted right after the counter is triggered, allowing the player to hit in four directions: right, left, up and down.


  • Large frame, having big hurtboxes.
  • High falling speed, which allied with his high jumping height can sometimes make it difficult for some combos to string together.
  • Limited options for KO, specially in the air.
  • Weak grabs that cannot KO even at higher percentages.
  • Considerable startup and ending lags on many moves, mostly its aerials.
  • All Smash Attacks have a sweetspot at the edge of Greninja's Water Swords. This is mostly noticeable in his Up Smash, which deals negligible knockback if it doesn't sweetspot.
  • Lack of range in many moves.
  • Water Shuriken cannot be stored like other chargeable projectiles. It also has considerable startup lag. The projectile is also not so fast compared to other charging projectiles.
  • Opponents can see where Greninja will appear when charging Shadow Sneak by paying attention to his shadow on the ground.
  • Hydro Pump doesn't have front hitboxes, meaning that Greninja will pass through opponents rather than causing direct damage.
  • The Substitute doll/wooden block is created after the counter triggers can be attacked by opponents and hit Greninja.


Greninja is the Smash Bros. definition of high risk, high reward. Greninja’s speed is unmatched, which allows it to apply an immense amount of pressure on the opponent. Along with its speed, Greninja has solid and fast Smash Attacks and a good aerial game that allows it to put good pressure while on the offensive. Some of its Special Moves can make it fairly unpredictable, as well setting opponents for many follow ups. Greninja’s edge-game is great as well, thanks to its aerial attacks and recovery moves.

Water Shuriken is its main zoning tool. While having considerable startup lag and not being fast and powerful as other charging projectiles, it fully charges faster, and its multi-hits can trap opponents for follow ups. With this in his favor, it can put good pressure for edge-guarding, specially since a fully charged Water Shuriken will hit low on the ground, which can hit an opponent holding the ledge.

Shadow Sneak is its most useful asset, being able to score surprise KOs and dish out considerable damage, pulling effective mind games against its opponents. It is what makes Greninja truly unpredictable, as the only way opponents can tell where it will appear is by looking at its shadow on the ground; something that can be difficult to spot on the heat of the battle, specially on stages with dark colored floor.

Hydro Pump is Greninja's main tool of recovery, which, allied with its very high jumps, allows it to recover from very long distances. While Hydro Pump does not have a front hitbox like Pikachu's Quick Attack (and it's not as fast), it has powerful pushboxes by the which, when used correctly, can prevent opponents from recovering similarly to Mario's F.L.U.D.D.

Substitute is one of the best counters in the game since the player can control Greninja's trajectory and where it will appear from, allowing them to control the knockback angle to an extent; if aimed up, Greninja will appear from below and kick its opponent upwards. It is a powerful Meteor Smash when aiming down, however its ending lag can also cause Greninja to self-destruct if used off platform too close to the bottom blast line.

The downsides begin with Greninja’s recovery options. Greninja’s Substitute can be difficult to control and leaves it completely vulnerable to punishment. Greninja’s counter animation is really slow and is difficult to hit the opponent while in the air. Another shortcoming of Greninja's is its range; it needs to be up close and personal, and ranged characters can really rack up the damage on it. This combined with his considerable high startup and ending lag for some moves makes Greninja a very difficult character to maneuver, specially for combos.

However, Greninja is a character full of small tricks that can be used in its favor. For example, using Hydro Pump's pushboxes to change the character's momentum and prevent them from recovering. This is mostly useful against opponents with poor recovering tactics, such as Little Mac.

Overall, Greninja is a very versatile character, rewarding the player if they can pull off its tricky techniques while distracting and intercepting the opponent at the same time. With all his tricks, it is a very slippery character who can escape tight situations and move around the stage at ease, punishing mistakes with hit and run tactics, rather than charging in against opponents. With his high mobility, it can pull a lot of baits and mindgames that effectively throw opponents off balance.


Ground Attacks


  • Neutral Attack: Three quick jabs (2%, 1,6%, 3,5%), followed by rapid jabs multiple times with blades of water (1% per hit), then finishes with a strong double palm strike with a blast of water (2%).
  • Side Tilt: Kicks forward (6,5%), similar to Samus' Forward Tilt. Good for spacing. Can be angled. It is possible to cancel it into Dash Attack.
  • Up Tilt: Strikes upward with its tongue (4,5%). Good combo starter.
  • Down Tilt: Does a low sweeping kick (7%). Can set for many follow ups.
  • Dash Attack: Does a sliding kick similar to Mario/Dr. Mario's Dash Attack (7%). Very fast and can set for many follow ups, however it has considerable ending lag.


  • Side Smash: Slashes with a water sword in a reverse grip manner (14%). Considerable high startup lag. Can be pivot cancelled.
  • Up Smash: Slashes with water swords upwards on both sides of its head with a reverse grip in an outwards arc. Has a very strong sweetspot at the edge of the blades, when hitting on top (5% - hit 1, 14% - hit 2 clean center, 11% - hit 2 clean sides, 10% - hit 2 late).
  • Down Smash: Strikes on both sides with water swords, with a reverse grip (13% - swords, 11% - arms).


To be added

Aerial Attacks

  • Neutral Aerial: Enters a ninja pose while blasts a water vortex surrounds it (11% - clean, 6% - late). Good combo starter at low percentages, however has very low range.
  • Forward Aerial: Slashes with a water sword (14%). Has considerable startup and ending lag, but quite powerful.
  • Back Aerial: Does three spinning back kicks (3%, 2,5%, 4%). High combo and KO potential. Has very little to no ending and landing lag.
  • Up Aerial: Does an upwards drill kick that hits 6 times (1,3% - hits 1 to 5, and 3% - hit 6). Similar to Samus and Sheik's Up Aerial, however it only has hitboxes on its leg, as opposed to Sheik's whole body. Can KO at around 150%. Can also be used to pull opponents downwards with fast fall, as the 5th hit acts as a semi-spike.
  • Down Aerial: A very fast diving stomp with boot feet, which functions as a stall-then-fall and causes Greninja to bounces off enemies if the middle hitbox of the feet connect. However, bouncing off enemies prevents Greninja from using his double jump. Can cause Meteor Smash at the first frames of the attack, much like Toon Link's Down Aerial.

Grabs and Throws

  • Pummel: A whirlpool surrounds the opponent and squeezes him/her (2%).
  • Forward Throw: Hurls opponent forward with one hand (5%).
  • Back Throw: Hurls the opponent backward with both arms (8%).
  • Up Throw: Tosses the opponent upwards with one hand, while striking a ninja pose with the other hand (5%). It is the only grab that can kill over 150%.
  • Down Throw: Slams the opponent into the ground (6%). Can set for a dashing Up Smash follow up depending on the opponent's DI.

Special Moves

Greninja's Special Moves
SSBWU/3DS Ultimate
Standard Special Water Shuriken
Side Special Shadow Sneak
Up Special Hydro Pump
Down Special Substitute
Final Smash Secret Ninja Attack

Greninja's Custom Special Moves
Custom 1 Custom 2
Standard Special Stagnant Shuriken Shifting Shuriken
Side Special Shadow Strike Shadow Dash
Up Special High-Capacity Pump Single-Shot Pump
Down Special Exploding Attack Substitute Ambush


  • Up: Strikes a ninja pose. Based on his attack animation in Pokemon X and Y (for Hydro Pump, Extrasensory, etc.).
  • Side: Moves tongue from side to side as water sprinkles out of it.
  • Down: Sprouts water from both of its hands upwards (like water fountains). One of the few taunts that deals damage (3%).

In Competitive Play

To Be Added

Trophy descriptions

This Water/Dark-type Pokémon is the fully evolved form of Froakie. It's just as fast and dangerous as any other ninja, and the throwing stars it can make out of water can shear metal. In Smash Bros., as well as being a graceful, speedy fighter, it can also use moves like Hydro Pump that let it travel through the air and avoid falling.
  • Pokémon X and Pokémon Y (10/2013)
Greninja (Alt.)
Greninja's Substitute down special lets you teleport to dodge attacks and then strike back, making it an effective and hard-to-predict way to counterattack. You can also control where you reappear by inputting directions. When you vanish, sometimes you'll be replaced by a log, other times by a cuddly toy.
  • Pokémon X and Pokémon Y (10/2013)
Secret Ninja Attack
In Greninja's Final Smash, it uses its Mat Block move to flip opponents into the air. It then slices them repeatedly in front of the bright moon before smacking them back down to the ground and launching them. The initial Mat Block flip doesn't have much range, but should it hit home, the rest of the attack is unavoidable.

Alternate costumes

Greninja Palette (SSB4).png


Reveal trailer



  • Greninja's down taunt will actually do damage. This makes it the third character with a taunt that can cause damage. Luigi was the first, also with his down taunt. Snake is the second, where all his taunts can deal damage; although caused by the object he uses (his cardboard box).
    • Unlike Luigi and Snake's taunts, Greninja's down taunt actually has knockback scaling, capable of KO'ing opponents at extremely high percentages (above 600%).
  • Greninja's official artwork for Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS has almost the same pose as Ken Sugimori's artwork of it for Pokémon X/Y.
  • Greninja, Rosalina and Palutena are the only characters to have a unique sidestep; instead of truly sidestepping they disappear for half a second and reappear. Their roll is the same thing.
  • According to Sakurai, Greninja was already being developed as a playable character before Pokémon X/Y were announced. Sakurai admitted that he and his team had to come with many original moves for Greninja and/or wait for the team behind Pokémon X/Y to give them more info on the gameplay style of the character in development. This led to moves such as Secret Ninja Attack, to be created specially for Smash Bros. This Final Smash also references one of its signature moves in Pokémon X/Y, Mat Block (the other being Water Shuriken). Other than that, the move is entirely new.
  • Greninja's Final Smash, Secret Ninja Attack, and Zoroark's Fury Swipes both do the exact same thing in Smash Bros.: throw the opponent upward, trap them in the air, swiftly slash them multiple times, and deliver a powerful finishing blow with a Meteor Smash effect.
    • The multiple attacks Greninja perform could also be a reference to both Quick Attack, that Greninja can learn, although the slashes it does in its Final Smash are water-based.
  • During the trailer, fans mistook Greninja for Mewtwo since they both have three fingers. While charging Water Shuriken, Greninja had no webbing in between its fingers and a different torso shape. Because of this, many fans suspect that Sakurai and his team purposely made Greninja seem like Mewtwo to joke around with his audience. This has also transformed into an Internet Meme.
    • Another fact about the trailer, after Greninja is revealed and jumps off the tree branch it stands on using hydro-pump, a cloud shaped like Pac-Man is visible on the upper part of the screen.
  • Despite it's appearance and effects, Water Shuriken cannot be absorbed.
  • Due Greninja's massive number of nerfs in the balancing patches for Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS after its release, an internet expression known as "Better Nerf Greninja" was created as mockingly response from the community.

External links

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