- This article is about Palutena's appearance in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. For other uses, see Palutena.
Palutena (パルテナ, Palutena) is a starting character in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, representing the Kid Icarus universe, and being the only female combatant from the series. She was confirmed alongside the Mii Fighters and Pac-Man during E3 2014 on June 10th, 2014
She currently ranks 45th on the tier list. Palutena possessing a strong combo game and mobility, being capable of pressuring and spacing. However, her frame data makes her very slow when attacking, which makes her extremely susceptible to punishment and making it difficult to land KOs effectively. Compounding this is her weakness of being juggled easily
- Very powerful attacks that often have high range and/or affect a large radius, as well high priority, and hitting multiple times.
- Fast Aerial Attacks with little ending and landing lag.
- Fast dash and air speed.
- Has many attacks with disjointed hitboxes, ranging from Tilts to Smash Attacks.
- She is the only character (not counting Mii Fighters) whose Custom Moves are completely different for each Special Slot, as well being unlocked from the start. This gives her a variety of tools among her Special Attacks to deal with every type of opponent (but only with customizations on).
- Has a counter attack.
- Can reflect projectiles with Reflect Barrier, which can also flip opponents when used in close range, much like Mario's Cape.
- Good zoning with her Neutral Special, Autoreticle.
- Dash Attack and Back Aerial can block some projectiles.
- Second strongest pummel in the game, after Lucario with max Aura power.
- Has a Meteor Smash: Down Aerial. Additionally, it is one of the few Meteor Smashes with no sourspot, meaning it will always send opponents downwards.
- Powerful Smash Attacks.
- Forward and Down Smashes have windboxes, being able to push opponents, although it's not a strong effect.
- Up Smash has the highest range of all Up Smashes in the game, and has transcendent priority.
- Can edge-cancel her Warp, much like Zelda with Farore's Wind.
- Lightweight, tall, and has a high gravity, being easy to juggle and KO.
- High lag in most attacks, mostly for ground attacks and Smash Attacks, leaving her vulnerable.
- Lack of range on many moves, requiring her to be very close in order to hit effectively.
- Up Smash's hitboxes fade after reaching maximum height, meaning the attack won't hit when the beam starts to disappear.
- Can't take pressure from faster characters.
- Autoreticle will not fire if the enemy's not in range or something is blocking the way (like a wall). It will also not fire if the enemy has invincibility.
- Counter has low range compared to other characters with counter attacks.
- Unlike Link and Toon Link, her shield doesn't protect her when standing idle.
Palutena can be a considered as a Footsies and Half-Grappler character, utilizing her high mobility and defensive options to keep opponents off-balance and to space them.
Palutena's height makes it difficult for avoiding attacks, and her light weight makes survivability a problem, but her fast ground mobility and high air acceleration gives her many options for approaching opponents on the ground and air. Her slow falling speed, air speed, and high gravity enable her to transition from ground to air or vice versa, as well as change direction quickly.
Offensive-wise she is a powerhouse with strong normal attacks, especially her Tilts, as well powerful Smash Attacks with long reach (most notably Up Smash) and a fantastic dashing speed. Palutena also possesses high traction, high jumps, and high air acceleration, making her excel in mobility. She is also tall, has below average weight, and has high gravity, leading her to be pressured by other opponents.
When fighting in close-combat, Palutena's most valuable tool is her Down Throw, as it has low knockback scaling, allowing her to pull combos regardless of the opponent's percentage. Players can follow up with a Forward Aerial, RAR Back Aerial and even Up Smash; on higher percentages the player can also follow up with Up Aerial, which at high percentages is a powerful and guaranteed KO move. Up and Down Tilts also play a similar role in follow ups, most effective at lower percentages. Her Forward Aerial can combo with itself, and her Neutral Aerial has very low landing lag, meaning she can easily connect ground attacks after using it.
As for the killing moves, aside her Smash Attacks, her Up Aerial is a deadly multi-hit attack that can easily trap opponents, although it has small hitboxes, being a bit hard to land, specially against smaller and/or faster opponents. Her Down Aerial, while not being a powerful Meteor Smash and having very low range, it will always send opponents downwards because it has no sourspot, unlike most Down Aerials.
With her standard Special Moves, Palutena takes a much more defensive approach, possessing a very versatile moveset. She can zone opponents effectively with Autoreticle, bounce back projectiles back at their senders with Reflect Barrier, deal heavy damage to melee characters with Counter and has a great recovery move with Warp, which while not dealing damage, can travel great distances. This makes Palutena formidable against any type of character.
All that said, Palutena is overall very slow in terms of attack speed (mostly for ground attacks) due to her ending lag issues, and can easily get trashed by quicker characters. Although her Smash Attacks have great reach and definitely decent launch power, they leave her vulnerable for a fairly long period if compared to other characters. In addition, her Special Moves are primarily defensive-oriented, making them ineffective at directly pressuring opponents. Her lightweight status, high gravity and low falling speed make her extremely susceptible to juggling and early KO's.
When playing as Palutena, it is very important to predict the opponent correctly and maintain proper spacing, because her biggest flaw is the enormous number of attacks and abilities which leave her vulnerable, such as her Smash Attacks, her Side and Up Tilts, and all of her Special Attacks excluding Warp. When playing against Palutena, trick the player into using these abilities to your advantage, counterattacking at every chance.
- Neutral Attack: Pokes her staff forward. Very fast with long range, but also has high ending lag. Can be jab cancelled into another jab, as well a dash grab.
- Neutral Combo: The orb at the end of the staff repeatedly glows a blue spark, causing multiple hits and trapping opponents easily. The finisher causes a small burst of energy which knocks back the opponent.
- Side Tilt: Let go of her staff, which spins in the air, in front of her and returns to her hand. Has long range and duration, useful for spacing, however it is quite slow.
- Up Tilt: Ducks her staff spins above her in the air. Hits multiple times times. Very slow, much like her Forward Tilt, however it makes Palutena's hurtboxes low enough to dodge some high attacks, while protecting her body with the staff. The staff hitboxes is powerful enough to stop some attacks like Bowser Bomb.
- Down Tilt: Spins her staff on the ground. It is her fastest tilt, although still quite slow, but very useful for spacing and ledgeguarding, specially if the opponent doesn't have ledge invincibility. Can be cancelled into other attacks.
- Dash Attack: Smacks forward with her shield. Great launch power, can kill at higher damages. It also grants Palutena 12 frames of invincibility, being able to block and destroy projectiles and out-prioritize most attacks. Also has the interesting effect of blocking counters.
- Side Smash: Palutena summons her angel wings to attack horizontally. Also causes a small gust of wind which pushes opponents on the direction of the attack. Causes more damage and knockback if it hits closer to the enemy. Very powerful, being able to KO opponents below 110% if sweetspotted, however has very long ending lag.
- Up Smash: Palutena conjures an azure beam of light that rises up from the ground in front of her. The attack's height is roughly a bit more than 3 times Palutena's height, being the Up Smash with the highest reach in the game, as well having powerful knockback. Incredible useful for edgeguarding. However, only the initial "thrust" of the animation have hitboxes; when the beam reaches its maximum height and starts to fade, it'll no longer be able to hit enemies.
- Down Smash: Palutena summons her angel wings to attack each side of her by slamming them on the ground. Very useful against dodge rolls. Also causes gusts of wind on both sides of her, though they push opponents, but less than her Side Smash. Quite powerful, but has massive ending lag, being her attack with the highest lag.
To be added
- Neutral Aerial: Spins her staff around her. Hits multiple times and has long duration. Has very low landing lag, but also low range. One of her best assets for starting combos.
- Forward Aerial: Kicks with both her legs. A good follow-up to her Down Throw. Looks similar to Zelda's Lightning Kicks, but without the powerful sweetspot. However, it is very fast and can combo with itself against opponents with low percentages, as well having low ending lag.
- Back Aerial: Swings her shield backwards, in a motion similar to Captain Falcon and Ganondorf's Back Aerials Very powerful in terms of knockback, although having low range. Much like her Dash Attack, it grants Palutena invincibility frames that can block attacks. Slightly faster than her Forward Aerial, and can be cancelled in short hops.
- Up Aerial: Her wings and halo glow blue and rise above her head a short length. Deals four hits that traps opponents, and one last fifth hit that launches opponents upwards. Notable for being her attack with the least lag (both startup and ending), as well having very high knockback scaling, being one of Palutena's strongest attacks. However, it cannot be cancelled in short hops, instead resulting in a higher landing lag if she uses it from a certain distance from the ground, even if the attack is completed.
- Down Aerial: Kicks downwards in an arc. It's a Meteor Smash with no sourspot, meaning the attack will always Meteor Smash regardless of how and when it hits the opponent. However, it has very low range.
Grabs and Throws
- Pummel: The staff deals magical damage. Notable for being the second strongest pummel after Max Aura Lucario.
- Forward Throw: Launches the opponent forward with her magic. It is her weakest throw in terms of knockback.
- Back Throw: Flips the opponent over her head and kicks behind her. Can KO at high percentages.
- Up Throw: Launches the opponent upwards with her staff. Good for putting pressure afterwards with Up Aerial.
- Down Throw: Telepathically slams the opponent into the ground. It has low knockback scaling, meaning the opponent won't be launched back very far even at higher percentages. Her best asset for starting combos. Depending on the opponent's DI, it can combo into Neutral, Forward and Up Aerials, and even Up Smash.
- Up Taunt: Stretches her arms as her wings pop out, and says "You shall be purified!", while her symbol appears behind her.
- Side Taunt: Twirls around her staff with her leg outstretched and laughs.
- Down Taunt: Lets go of her staff and acts flirtatiously, saying "Ready when you are", while her symbol appears behind her.
In Competitive Play
To Be Added
- In Kid Icarus: Uprising, the goddess of light uses telepathy to communicate and grants miracles to support Pit on his adventure. In Smash Bros., she has special moves like Warp and Heavenly Light at her disposal. She's very adaptable—you can customize her into a long- or close-range fighter!
- Kid Icarus (08/1987)
- Kid Icarus: Uprising (03/2012)
- Palutena (Alt.)
- Palutena's Reflect Barrier side special deflects any attacks and projectiles that come at her from the front. Unlike other reflective moves, you can leave this barrier in place and it will keep reflecting. If you really want to ruin someone's day, you can push them over an edge using this move.
- Kid Icarus (08/1987)
- Kid Icarus: Uprising (03/2012)
- Black Hole Laser
- Palutena's Final Smash. After doing a divine twirl, she creates a black hole in front of her, drawing in her opponents. When she's got 'em where she wants 'em, she follows up with a wide laser beam that reaches from one edge of the screen to the other. It even changes direction slightly, just in case someone managed to avoid the black hole.
- Palutena and the Mii Fighters are the only characters that have their customizable special moves unlocked from the start.
- Most of Palutena's special moves are based on Powers from Kid Icarus: Uprising.
- Palutena, Rosalina, and Greninja are the only characters to disappear while spot-dodging, air-dodging, and rolling.
- Palutena is the only playable character that first appears as a Final Smash (as being part of Pit's Palutena's Army).
- Her Up Smash has the highest range of all Up Smashes in the game.
- Palutena is the only character with both a reflector and a counterattack in her default moveset.
- Palutena made a cameo in Cloud's All-Star congratulations screen, where she walked away through flames as Cloud glares at her. This was a reference to the Nibelheim Incident from Final Fantasy VII, and specifically to the main antagonist and person responsible for the disaster, Sephiroth, where he similarly walked through flames as Cloud, or rather, Zack Fair watched.