Recoil damage (also known as self-damage) is damage taken by a character when it uses an attack under certain circumstances. Recoil damage is constant regardless of any other factors; it is not affected by stale-move negation, and occurs even if the user is invincible or intangible. Being damaged by one's own explosive generally does not count as recoil damage, as it does not directly deal damage to the character. Recoil damage does not cause knockback to the user.
Recoil damage can only be negated via the use of Melee's Cloaking Device item. In addition, the All-Star Rest Area in Smash for 3DS / Wii U prevents any recoil damage from harming the player's character, as for that would not be fair.
List of moves with recoil damage
- Charizard - Flare Blitz deals 5% damage when used and an additional 5% if it hits (for a total of 10%).
- Diddy Kong - Rocketbarrel Boost, when hitting a wall or ceiling. Deals 5% damage.
- Donkey Kong - Receives 10% damage if someone breaks free from his cargo throw (Melee only).
- Ike - Fully charged Eruption, deals 10% damage.
- Dragon Quest Hero - Kamikazee deals a lot of damage, and the Hero has a chance to inflict an OHKO on himself.
- Incineroar - If his Side Special Move, Rope Swing, fails, Incineroar takes minor damage along with his target.
- Jigglypuff - Wakie Wakie (Down-3), deals 5% damage whenever Jigglypuff wakes up.
- King Dedede - Jet Hammer - when holding a fully charged Jet Hammer, King Dedede will receive damage in a fashion similar to hoop damage: it damages at 1% increments, but does not do any damage when at 150% or above (100% in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U).
- Kirby - When holding a fully charged Hammer Flip or Giant Hammer, Kirby will take damage in the same way King Dedede does, but does not take any damage after 100% or above. He can also copy Thunder Jolt (Pichu), Flare Blade, and Eruption, which all damage Kirby just as they would the original user.
- Mr. Game & Watch - #1 Judge, deals 12% damage. In Super Smash Bros. 4, there exists a variant called "Extreme Judge" that negates some of the recoil damage at 1.
- Pichu - Most electric-based moves: Thunder Jolt (1%), Skull Bash (1%), Agility (1% for the first leap and 3% for the optional second one), Thunder (3% when connecting with Pichu), forward smash (2%), forward aerial (4%), down aerial (1%, or 2% if Pichu hits the ground during the attack), pummel (1%), and forward throw (1%). Up throw and down throw do not cause any recoil damage, despite their electrical effects.
- Roy - Fully charged Flare Blade, deals 12% damage.
- Chrom - Fully charged Flare Blade, deals 12% damage.