|“||Mario is an all-around fighter who uses his wide variety of techniques to respond to any situation. In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, he shows up in his wedding tux and builder outfit, and Cappy even makes an appearance!||”|
|—Description from the Super Smash Blog.|
Mario (マリオ) is a veteran fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, first playable in Super Smash Bros. He was teased in the game's first teaser trailer in March of 2018 and officially confirmed on June 12th at E3 2018. His fighter number is #1.
- Excellent combo game, with a versatile amount of tools to combo and juggle opponents.
- Overall balanced stats make him a jack-of-all-trades.
- Moveset allows him to adapt well to most situations.
- Possesses a wall jump.
- Has a neutral aerial that is good at starting combos as well as interrupting enemy combos.
- Good at edge-guarding.
- Forward aerial can meteor smash.
- Fireball is a decent projectile that can be used for zoning, approaches, gimping, and edge-guarding.
- Cape is a reflector and also forces enemies to change directions, allowing it to frustrate recoveries and stalls his aerial momentum, assisting in recovery.
- Super Jump Punch can be an effective combo finisher and can KO near the top of the upper blast zone.
- FLUDD disrupts recovering opponents easily and pushes opponents back to create space.
- Poor range on many of his attacks.
- Underwhelming recovery distance.
- Has difficulty approaching without the use of Fireballs, which cannot be easily spammed.
- Relies very heavily on combos to deal significant damage.
- Has few kill options outside of smash attacks and his forward aerial.
- Possesses no significant strengths against a particular character, making him somewhat outclassed.
Mario emerges as a beginner-friendly character, possessing balanced mobility, which while not as fast as rushdown characters or nearly as tanky as heavyweight characters, does grant him versatility in many situations, and allows him to shift between offensive and defensive play quickly.
Mario's greatest asset is his fantastic frame data; possessing fast startup on the majority of his moves and ending quickly, Mario is exceptional in close combat against the majority of the cast due to very few characters matching his speed. His attack speed allows him to pressure opponents reliably, chain into other moves quickly, and rack up damage quickly once he gains the advantage. These traits lend themselves into Mario's exceptional ground game, with his tilts being excellent combo starters and his smash attacks being excellent KO options, and his outstanding aerial game, being able to juggle opponents. Mario's other notable asset is his grab game; while it may seem average, actually lends him good options for combo starting and confirming kills, with Back Throw being a very strong option.
Mario's Special Moves are also highly versatile for numerous situations. Fireball is Mario's main option for approach, granting him the ability to negate other projectiles and confirm a grab due to its brief hitstun. Cape is a dual-effective move, as it protects Mario from projectile users and can reverse opponents' momentum, which can gimp their recovery. Super Jump Punch is a useful out of shield option and damage racker, and can be an combo finisher for aerial combos, as it has the potential of carrying opponents off the upper blast zone. F.L.U.D.D., while a simple option at first, can push opponents away to create space between them and Mario, which can help relieve pressure.
Mario's main weakness lies in his lack of approach options; because the majority of his moves lacking range, he must constantly try to approach fighters with either Fireball or his aerials, which puts him at an extreme disadvantage against fighters with disjointed reach, as they can deny Mario any approach opportunities while making their own. This also leads to rather inconsistent KO potential, forcing Mario to rely on setups in order to confirm kills. Mario's balanced character also prevents him from having any significant strengths against other fighters, as they often specialize in one particular field such as speed, power, and combo ability, which can outclass Mario's own capabilities.
In short, while Mario is an easy character to use for learning the fundamentals of the game, using him effectively requires being able to respond in any situation, as Mario has the mobility and frame data to adapt and shift his playstyle. Mario must also be capable of approaching opponents, as well as capitalizing on any advantage he has with his fast attack speed and powerful combo potential in order to maximize damage and confirm KOs.
Changes from SSBWU/3DS
Mario received a mixture of buffs and nerfs in the transition from the previous titles. The universal nerf to grabs affected Mario more than most fighters, as his previously powerful grab game can be punished more easily if it misses. Mario's two staple moves, Down Throw and Up Tilt, were also altered in such a manner that they are no longer reliable starters for Mario. The changes in dodging and rolling also affect Mario negatively, as it somewhat limits his mobility and approach options. Finally, the changes to rage makes KOs off the upper blast zone less reliable as Super Jump Punch is no longer affected.
Despite this, Mario did gain some significant buffs from the new engine; his already excellent mobility was improved, and his aerial game became even more potent for approaching and setups due to the reduced landing lag on all of his aerials. The ability to dash cancel into any ground attack also improved Mario's ability to approach, and with powershielding being replaced by parrying, Mario can capitalize more on punishes and gain an advantage easily. Finally, his grounded attacks inflict more shieldstun, and his Fireball and F.L.U.D.D have less endlag, which makes them more useful options.
Aesthetically, Mario possesses a subdued color scheme, which resembles the one he had in Brawl while retaining his design from the previous title. Mario is also considerably more expressive, occasionally shifting between being happy and being serious. Finally, in place of his Fire Mario and Wario palette swaps, Mario has his Builder outfit from Super Mario Maker and his Wedding outfit from Super Mario Odyssey. Additionally, Cappy, Mario's companion from Super Mario Odyssey, has been added to Mario's side taunt and Super Jump Punch.
- Up Taunt consists of Mario giving a thumbs-up to the camera.
- Side Taunt consists of Mario throwing Cappy in a circle.
- Mario jumps higher.
- Mario now hangs on ledges with one hand instead of two and looks angrier when doing so.
- Mario's head is turned toward screen as opposed to one side as in the previous title
- Has new air dodge animation.
- Up tilt has increased ending lag and has less horizontal range, making it unable to hit grounded opponents.
- Down tilt has increased base knockback and a more horizontal launch angle. Additionally, he kicks from right to left as opposed to left to right in previous titles.
- Dash attack's animation has been altered, as Mario now kicks with one foot instead of two, travels further forward, and no longer crouches while performing the move.
- Down Smash's animation changed to resemble the break dance Mario performs on the cover of Dance Dance Revolution: Mario Mix.
- Neutral and forward aerials have decreased landing lag.
- Forward aerial's animation now mirrors Mario's stance and has Mario twist instead of flip at the end of the move.
- Down aerial's looping hits connect into each other better and the final hit has an altered animation where Mario spreads his limbs out more.
Grabs and Throws
- Pummel is faster and Mario now only uses one hand to pummel instead of two like in previous games.
- Up throw has an altered animation.
- Down throw has altered knockback and a more horizontal launch angle.
- Fireball is now a multi-hitting attack at close range.
- Cape now is worn around Mario's neck when used instead of being held in his hand, similar to how Mario wore the cape around his neck in Super Mario World. It additionally has a new animation.
- Super Jump Punch travels further, the coins produced by the move have a chance to appear as the Regional Coins from Super Mario Odyssey, and now has the aforementioned Cappy appear when the move is performed.
- F.L.U.D.D. has an altered charging animation.
- Neutral Attack: The Punch, Punch, Kick combo from Super Mario 64.
- Forward Tilt: A wheel kick. It can be angled.
- Up Tilt: A spinning uppercut.
- Down Tilt: A leg sweep.
- Dash Attack: A baseball slide.
- Forward Smash: Steps back and does a palm thrust that produces a small explosion. It can be angled.
- Up Smash (Lead Headbutt): An upward arching headbutt.
- Down Smash: The Sweep Kick from Super Mario 64. Mario does a breakdance kick that hits both sides.
- Floor Attack (Front): Performs a modified version of the Sweep Kick from Super Mario 64 while getting up.
- Floor Attack (Back): Punches behind himself and then in front of himself while getting up.
- Floor Attack (Trip): Performs a side kick behind himself and then in front of himself while getting up.
- Ledge Attack: Performs a dropkick while climbing up.
- Neutral aerial: A flying kick. A standard sex kick.
- Forward aerial (Meteor Knuckle): Rears back his fist and then throws an overhand. In the last title, it was turned into the infamous Forward Aerial meme by Alpharad.
- Back aerial: A dropkick behind Mario.
- Up aerial: A bicycle kick.
- Down aerial (Mario Tornado): Rapidly spins around, trapping opponents and damaging them with a series of discus clotheslines and spinning backfists before assuming a spread-eagle position to launch them.
Grabs and Throws
- Pummel: Headbutts the opponent.
- Forward Throw: Spins the opponent around once and throws them forward.
- Back Throw (Airplane Swing): Spins the opponent by their legs three times before throwing them backward. Based on the throw Mario uses to defeat Bowser in Super Mario 64.
- Up Throw: Heaves the opponent directly overhead with both hands.
- Down Throw: A bodyslam.
|Mario's Special Moves|
|Up Special||Super Jump Punch|
|Down Special||Mario Tornado||F.L.U.D.D.|
|Final Smash||—||Mario Finale|
- Up Taunt: Turns his back to the camera and gives a thumbs-up.
- Side Taunt: Throws Cappy in a circle.
- Down Taunt: The death animation from Donkey Kong.
- Enters through a Warp Pipe and says "Let's-a-go!".
- Mario adjusts his hat.
- Mario ducks slightly and holds his fists up in front of his face.
- Makes fire burst from his palm and strikes a pose.
- Winds up for a punch and steps forward while punching in front of the screen.
- Does a high spin-jump and lands in a strong-man pose. (His "character chosen" animation in Super Smash Bros.)
In competitive play
Upon the release of Ultimate, Mario was regarded as an average mid-tiered character. This was seen through his poor range, which was impacted more in the game due to swordfighters and character with disjoints being reworked; swordfighters especially were among the best characters in the early metagame. Furthermore, many players noted the nerfs to Mario's combo game, his best tool in Smash 4. As a result, Mario's reception was initially mediocre.
Despite this, Mario always had solid representation thanks to players such as Dark Wizzy, Kurama, MastaMario, and Lui$. Dark Wizzy, in particular, has consistently placed in Top 8 at many national tournaments including Shine 2019, Glitch 8, and GENESIS 7. In addition, Kurama defeated MkLeo at Frostbite 2020 in a 3-0 fashion. These results have significantly improved Mario's reception among professionals to the point where most players consider him to be top-tier. Furthermore, some of his hardest matchups, such as Sonic, Marth, and Cloud, were considerably nerfed, and were less of a problem to deal with.
Due to his better reception, Mario's nerfs from Smash 4 did not affect him in the long run as players noted that all his strengths from the previous game, despite being nerfed, were mostly retained. His matchup spread is also great: Mario has positive matchups against meta-relevant characters like Pikachu, R.O.B., Mega Man, Olimar, Pac-Man, Inkling, Fox, Wolf, and Wario, while only having a few troublesome matchups, such as Lucina, Palutena, Mr. Game & Watch, Shulk and Cloud.
Classic Mode: Let's-a-Go!
Mario's Classic Mode consists of him battling with a group of fighters from various numerous universes on the home-stage of their universe. Mario's song in the credits is Super Mario Bros.: The Lost Levels Medley. Completing Mario's Classic Mode gives the player a chance to unlock Sonic, which references the Mario and Sonic at the Olympic Games crossover video game series.
|1||Link and Zelda||Great Plateau Tower||Overworld Theme - The Legend of Zelda (Brawl)|
|2||Kirby, Meta Knight, and King Dedede||Green Greens||Green Greens (Melee)|
|3||Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong||Kongo Falls||Jungle Level (Melee)|
|4||Squirtle, Ivysaur, Charizard, and Pikachu||Pokemon Stadium||Main Theme - Pokémon Red & Pokémon Blue (Brawl)|
|5||Marth, Ike, and Chrom||Coliseum||Story 5 Meeting|
|6||The Koopalings and Bowser Jr.||Princess Peach's Castle||Fortress Boss - Super Mario Bros. 3||Mario faces the Koopalings in the same order he does in Super Mario Bros. 3.|
|Final||Bowser, then Giga Bowser||Final Destination||King Bowser - Super Mario Bros. 3 (Bowser)
Giga Bowser (Giga Bowser)
|A Maxim Tomato spawns on the stage after Bowser is KO’d|
Role in World of Light
Mario first appears in the opening cut scene with the other fighters along the cliffside facing the army of Master Hands. When Galeem unleashes his beams of light, Mario is one of the many characters to be destroyed by them off-screen.
Mario later appears in a captured state and is used to demonstrate how the puppet fighters were created, with his particular fighter hosting the imprisoned spirit of Smoky Progg.
Mario can be found in the Light Realm on the starting path before the crossroads, making him the very first fighter to be fought and unlocked, and an unmissable character.
Mario is later seen to be the first fighter to arrive at the final battle between Galeem and Dharkon, as well as makes an appearance in two of the story's endings if only one of the entities is defeated:
- If Galeem is defeated, Mario is seen collapsing on the ground as Dharkon covers the world in darkness.
- If Dharkon is defeated, Mario is seen reacting in shock as Galeem covers the world, presumably being vaporized as in the beginning of the story.
In Spirit Battles
As the main opponent
|21||Metal Mario||Metal Mario||Shield||9,600||The Great Cave Offensive (Battlefield form)|
|22||Boo Mario||Mario||Shield||1,900||Dracula’s Castle (hazards off)|
|34||Toadsworth||Mario||Shield||1,900||Princess Peach’s Castle|
|75||Starship Mario||Giant Mario||Shield||4,100||Mario Galaxy (Battlefield form)|
|85||B Dasher||Mario (x3)||Attack||9,400||Figure-8 Circuit|
|119||Kid||Mario Team (x4)||Attack||2,500||Golden Plains (Battlefield form)|
|128||MC Ballyhoo & Big Top||Mario
|130||Rabbid Mario||Bunny Mario||Attack||3,400||3D Land|
|132||Mario (Mario Tennis Aces)||Mario
|Neutral||8,800||Wuhu Island (Swordplay Colosseum)|
|299||Baby Mario||Tiny Mario
|816||Smoky Progg||Mario||Neutral||1,600||Distant Planet (Battlefield form)|
|941||Von Kaiser||Mario||Attack||1,800||Boxing Ring|
|1,147||Maruhige Shop Owner||Mario||Shield||3,700||Pac-Land (Battlefield form)|
|Grab||1,900||Princess Peach’s Castle|
- Mario's artwork resembles his pose while performing his neutral aerial.
- Mario is the very first character that is unlocked in Adventure Mode: World of Light, which marks his first appearance as an unlockable character, though only specifically in World of Light, as he remains a starter in other game modes.
- Mario's puppet fighter is also the very first one encountered in World of Light.
- Mario makes the most amount of appearances in the World of Light cutscenes, being featured in all of them barring the true ending.
- Mario’s render from the E3 Demo of Ultimate was slightly different, having less polygons and a lower quality altogether.
- Mario makes an appearance in one of Piranha Plant's victory screens, being one of the two characters to appear in another fighter's victory screen along with Chrom.