This article is about Ness' appearance in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. For other uses, see Ness.
Ness has a variety of moves, from long-range attacks using psychic powers known as "PSI," to short-range attacks with his bat and yo-yo. Ness can also unleash PK Thunder, a guided attack that can launch him like a rocket or help him recover!
—Description from the Super Smash Blog.

Ness is a veteran fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, first playable in Super Smash Bros. He was confirmed to return on June 12, 2018 during E3 2018.

For his unlocking battle, Ness is fought at Onett.



  • Multiple projectiles allow him to maintain pressure from a distance.
  • PSI Magnet allows him to heal himself when he absorbs projectiles. Also, PSI Magnet has a hitbox.
  • Grabs are capable of KOing at low percentages.
  • Moves combo well into each other.
  • Very good aerial game due high range, ease of juggling, edgeguarding and killing.
  • Small hurtboxes make him difficult to hit.
  • PK Fire has a large damage buildup and traps enemies for its full duration, making it a good combo starter.


  • PK Thunder is an unreliable recovery move.
  • Fast projectiles are difficult to absorb.
  • Weak ground game due to low range and lag on some moves.
  • Double jump is slower than average and easier to interrupt.
  • His PK Thunder makes him have to charge energy to use it, making him vulnerable.


Changes from SSBWU/3DS


  • Ness' Final Smash, PK Starstorm, now features Paula and Poo.
  • Ness' eyes bulge and grow more circular when he is hit or frozen.

Ground Attacks

Aerial Attacks

  • Ness' up-air has been changed to a multi-hit attack.

Grabs and Throws

  • Ness' grab and pummel now make use of his PSI.
  • Ness' down throw now has more circular effects to it to replicate the animations of PSI attacks in the Earthbound games.

Special Attacks

  • PK Flash moves faster and doesn't put Ness into a helpless state when used in the air.
  • PK Thunder has hexagonal effects around it to make it more visible. It is also a reference to the animations of PSI attacks in EarthBound.
    • Moreover, a small arrow will appear to point Ness' launching direction when PK Thunder is close to him.


Ground Attacks


  • Neutral Attack: Ness throws a punch, then a second punch, and then finishes with a kick.
  • Forward Tilt: Ness does a wheel kick. Can be angled up and down.
  • Up Tilt: Ness thrusts upwards with his hands, some PSI energy appearing from his fingertips.
  • Down Tilt: Ness kicks low to the ground.
  • Dash Attack: Ness thrusts his hands forwards and releases multiple sparks of PSI energy.

Smash Attacks

  • Forward Smash (Batter Up!): Ness swings his signature baseball bat forwards. Can reflect projectiles.
  • Up Smash (Around the World): Ness does an "Around the World" trick with his yo-yo, hitting in front of himself and then overhead, ending behind him.
  • Down Smash: Ness does a "Walk the Cat" trick with his yo-yo, hitting low to the ground behind him and then in front of himself. The yo-yo can hit enemies even while the move is charging.

Other attacks

  • Floor Attack (Front):
  • Floor Attack (Back):
  • Floor Attack (Trip):
  • Ledge Attack:

Aerial Attacks

  • Neutral aerial: Ness spins around with his outstretched arms emitting PSI, similar to Zelda's Neutral Aerial.
  • Forward aerial: Ness thrusts both hands forwards and releases multiple shocks of PSI energy.
  • Back aerial: Ness does a double kick.
  • Up aerial: Ness waves his hand overhead and emits PSI-Energy from his index finger, hitting 5 times.
  • Down aerial: Ness stomps downwards with one foot, PSI energy bursting from the tip of his foot.

Grabs and Throws

  • Pummel: Ness pummels his opponent with PSI-Energy.
  • Forward Throw: Ness uses psychic powers to spin the opponent around before hurling them forward.
  • Back Throw (Reverse PK Throw): Ness uses telekinesis to flip the opponent over him and then hurl them backwards.
  • Up Throw: Ness spins opponent above his head with PSI-Energy, then throws them upwards.
  • Down Throw: Ness hurls opponents beneath him and blasts multiple bolts of fire into them.

Special Moves

Ness's Special Moves
SSB Melee Brawl SSBWU/3DS Ultimate
Standard Special PK Fire PK Flash
Side Special PK Fire
Up Special PK Thunder
Down Special PSI Magnet
Final Smash PK Starstorm


  • Up Taunt: Places his hands on his hips, turns towards the screen and nods, saying, "Ok!"
  • Down Taunt: His PSI powers spark at his fingertips as he draws an 'S' shape in the air.
  • Side Taunt: Poses with his baseball bat outstretched.

On-Screen Appearance

Appears on the screen completely charred, then shakes his head to get all the dust off and return to his normal appearance.

Idle Poses

Victory Poses

  • Skips forward, then nods once.
  • He looks to his sides wondering, then puts his hand on the back of his head and scratches.
  • Swings his bat strongly, then points it forward.

In competitive play

Upon the release of Ultimate, Ness was considered an upper-mid to low high-tier character, roughly on par with his Smash 4 counterpart. Despite his improved recovery and various buffs, Ness remained limited by the popularity of swordfighters, who can effectively stuff out Ness' trademark aerials. Furthermore, the loss of the ability to airdodge multiple times before landing and the smaller hitbox of Ness' up air led players to believe that landing would be more challenging for Ness than in Smash 4.

However, Ness' results in the early metagame of Ultimate were stronger than in Smash 4. The overall mechanics of Ultimate and the changes to Ness' aerials and specials have greatly bolstered Ness' neutral, advantage, recovery, and movement options. In addition, many of Ness' hardest matchups from Smash 4 (most notably Rosalina & Luma, Cloud, and Corrin) were nerfed and are considered far less troublesome.

Ness' position in the current metagame remains up for debate. He has fairly strong representation in tournaments and had two representatives on the Fall 2019 PGRU: Gackt from Japan and Scend from the United States. FOW, S1, and Awestin have also achieved strong results with Ness in their respective regions. His matchup spread is very solid, doing quite well against Pikachu, Fox, Snake, and Wario, and well against R.O.B., Joker, Captain Falcon, and Roy. However, he does suffer from negative matchups against fighters that either outrange or counter his projectiles, such as Lucina, Palutena, Mr. Game and Watch, and Shulk. Overall, Ness is a potent but balanced character at high level play, with his overwhelming offensive kit and edgeguarding prowess offset by his limited recovery and landing options. Because of this, Ness is currently viewed as a high or mid tier character.

Notably, Ness is considered an even stronger character in Ultimate's online mode, as the presence of increased input lag ostensibly benefits him more than other characters, making his already fast aerials even safer and his recovery more difficult to challenge. These perceived advantages, while traditionally dismissed as meaningless in high-level competition, gained unforeseen significance as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, which has temporarily relegated all major tournaments to an online format. Ness' strong online results include impressive first-place finishes by Scend at The Quarantine Series: Minor Tournament 1 and The Box, the latter of which featured a $10,000 prize pool and the largest bracket of any Smash tournament (online or offline) to date.

Classic Mode: Home to Onett!

Ness fights opponents largely based on his journey in EarthBound in reverse from Magicant to Onett.

In Spirit Battles

As the Main Opponent

As a Minion

Role in World of Light

Although Ness has been absent from the World of Light opening cutscene, he was vaporized and later imprisoned alongside the rest of the fighters (minus Kirby) when Galeem unleashed his beams of light.

Ness can be found in a pink cloud area reminiscent of Magicant, and to access him the player needs to defeat the Flying Man spirit.

Palette Swap

Ness Palette SSBU.png


External links


  • The strength of Ness' smash attack is also based on what part of the bat it hits, with the tip being the strongest. This trait is shared with the Home-Run Bat.
  • Both Ness and Kirby share the same voice actor.
EarthboundSymbol.svg Mother/EarthBound universe
Characters Ness (64  · Melee  · Brawl  · 3DS/Wii U  · Ultimate)
Lucas (Brawl  · 3DS/Wii U  · Ultimate)
Side Characters Final Smash Paula  · Poo  · Kumatora  · Boney
Bosses Porky Statue  · Porky Minch
Assist Trophies Jeff Andonuts  · Starman
Mii Fighter Costumes Flying Man
Stage Hazards Ultimate Chimera  · Flying Man
Enemies Devil Car  · Starman
Stages Onett  · Fourside  · New Pork City  · Magicant
Items Mr. Saturn  · Franklin Badge  · Ramblin' Evil Mushroom
Music List of Music (Mother/EarthBound series)
Collectibles Trophies Melee Trophies  · Brawl Trophies  · 3DS Trophies  · Wii U Trophies
Stickers List of Stickers (Mother/EarthBound series)
Spirits List of spirits (EarthBound/MOTHER series)
Masterpieces Mother 2/EarthBound