- For Roy's fighter info, see Roy (SSBM), Roy (SSBWU/3DS), and Roy (SSBU). For the Metal Gear character, see Roy Campbell. For the Mario character, see Koopalings.
Roy (ロイ Roi?) is the main playable hero in the sixth installment of the Fire Emblem series of tactical role-playing games. Roy was included in Super Smash Bros. Melee as a playable character for the purpose of "previewing" the sixth game, which was released in Japan after Melee, making him the only character thus far in the Super Smash Bros. series to be included for that purpose. His appearance in Melee, along with fellow Fire Emblem character Marth, increased global interest in the general franchise, prompting the series to be released internationally from the seventh installment onwards.
While HAL Laboratory obliged to include Marth as a playable character in Super Smash Bros. Melee by popular Japanese demand, the sixth installment of Intelligent Systems' long-running Fire Emblem fantasy tactical-RPG series, Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade (Fuuin no Tsurugi), was nearing the end of its development. Nintendo decided to include that game's main character, Roy, as a playable character in addition to Marth to serve as a preview of the game for Japanese audiences, making Roy the only character in the Super Smash Bros. series to be featured for that purpose. It was a successful ploy to Japanese audiences for both Melee and The Binding Blade, but since this involved a game franchise never distributed outside of Japan beforehand, Nintendo was wary of keeping the unfamiliar fantasy swordsmen in Melee in its North American and European releases, but decided to keep them in based on the approval of western gamers. Roy and Marth, as new and original anime-inspired characters with rather effective fighting abilities, became popular enough in Melee that the Fire Emblem franchise gained international attention from the gaming community.
Intelligent Systems followed up with the franchise's seventh installment, subtitled Rekka no Ken ("Blazing Sword") but whose North American version is simply titled "Fire Emblem", designed with the international scene in mind rather than Japanese exclusivity. To this end they made it a prequel to The Binding Blade, set in the same Fire Emblem universe and chronology twenty years before Roy's quest, and starring Roy's father Eliwood, whose somewhat older resemblance to Roy was meant to appeal to players of Melee. The game's story is laid out with ten introductory chapters starring one of Eliwood's allies, Lyn, meant to introduce players to the Fire Emblem style of tactical play, and the other 20+ chapters are the main game itself. Blazing Sword's story is also structured so that knowledge of The Binding Blade is not required, and if the sixth game were played after the seventh, it would feel like a direct continuation.
Roy is studying in the province of Ostia, away from his home province of Pherae, both of which are in the nation of Lycia, when the militant nation of Bern begins to conquer various other nations on the continent; while his father Eliwood turns ill, Roy is called in to lead Pherae's army alongside the other armies of the League of Lycia against Bern and its ruler, Zephiel, who displays a mysterious thirst for world domination. Zephiel's errant younger sister, princess Guinevere, escapes Bern and comes to Roy in defiance of her brother's motives, hoping to negotiating a treaty with Lycian nobility. Roy quickly agrees to her proposal to search for a peaceful means to end Bern’s aggression, and it is in part this encounter that will eventually lead him on a journey across Elibe to save the continent from what could end up being a war with powerful dragons from a different dimension. He is ultimately successful in his endeavors when he defeats Zephiel. However, if all the legendary weapons of Elibe were gathered by meeting certain conditions ingame, the weapons would start glowing and pointing toward the location of the Dark Dragon, Idenn. A few extra chapters take place which results in the defeat of Idenn. Afterward, depending on certain ingame factors, different characters experience slightly different endings, but generally peace returns to Elibe and everyone lives happily ever after, with various rebuilding of respective countries. Roy is notable for having the most potential wife endings, depending on who he supports.
Binding Blade/Sword of Seals
The Binding Blade, translated as the Sword of Seals, is Roy's weapon. It was wielded by the Legendary Hero Hartmut, the founder of Bern, a military nation in Elibe. It was used to seal away the Dark Dragon and end the Scouring, a war in which humans fought and exiled dragons to another dimension. Roy would later take the Binding Blade as his main weapon following his promotion to Master Lord, and would use the blade to seal away the power of Dark Priestess/Dragon Idunn.
Roy uses the Binding Blade in all his attacks except his pummel and throws. It is referred to its Japanese-translated name in Melee and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, and is referred to as its localized name in Ultimate.
As a playable character
Roy makes his Smash-series debut (and by extent, his altogether game and North American debut as well) as an unlockable character in Melee. He can be battled to be unlocked one of two ways: beating either Classic or Adventure as Marth on any difficulty without Continuing, or playing 900 Vs. mode matches, clearly the first method is incomparably easier than the second.
Roy fights with his sword, the Sword of Seals, and his special moves all involve the sword's fiery powers. The Sword of Seals is Roy's blade of choice, and is used in most of his attacks, excluding grabs and throws. In contrast to Marth's Falchion, the Sword of Seals is most powerful near the center of the blade rather than the tip, and has a multitude of fire-based attacks.
Roy is a clone of Marth in that they feature pretty much the same movement and attack style, but their specifications are different. Roy seems at first to be a slower and stronger version of Marth, but he is actually almost the opposite; he has a relatively fast dash, a fast and long dash-dance, and a fast fall that gives speed to his Short hop aerials almost as well as Marth, and his Double-Edge Dance is very useful in battle, but his moves actually do rather low damage, and it is hard to land his primary killing move, his Forward Smash. It was determined professionally that Marth can KO better with his swordplay, which has a sweetspot on the tip of the sword, while Roy's sweetspot is more in the middle. Roy's Forward Smash and Flare Blade are decent at edgeguarding, has a great grab range (like Marth), and has a potentially effective move in his Counter, but it is his lack of a projectile, short recovery, and easiness to be juggled and combo'd, added with his low general damage, that ultimately make Marth the better fighter. Roy is mainly popular to use in the single-player modes of Melee.
- The son of the lord of Pharae Principality, Roy was studying in Ostia when the Kingdom of Bern invaded League of Lycia. His father fell ill at this time, so Roy assumed leadership of Pharae's armies. After his fateful meeting with the Princess Guinevere, his destiny became inextricably linked with the fate of the entire continent.
- Fire Emblem [Japan Only]
- Roy [Smash]
- While Roy's moves are well balanced, he's a little on the slow side, and doesn't excel at midair combat. His blade, the Sword of Seals, gives him excellent reach, and makes his Double-Edge Dance slightly different than Marth's Dancing Blade. When it's fully charged, Roy's destructive Flare Blade delivers an instant KO.
- Roy [Smash]
- Roy's blade is different than Marth's; he does the most damage hitting with the center of his sword. So, a fearless advance into the arms of his foe is Roy's best bet. Blazer is a bit slower than Marth's Dolphin Slash, but it's still a mighty attack that sets anyone it strikes aflame. Roy's attack after using Counter differs slightly from Marth's.
Roy is one of the five playable characters in Melee who did not return as a playable character in Brawl. However, it was discovered that by intensive hacking inside Brawl's disc that Roy was intended to return as a playable, but was ultimately cut due to time constraints. His only appearance in the game is as a sticker of his official artwork from Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade. Roy is also referenced in the title of Winning Road - Roy's Hope, an included theme from his game that can play during the Castle Siege stage.
As a playable character
While Roy did not return as a playable character in the initial version of Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U, he returns as a downloadable fighter on June 14th, 2015. In this game, his design was changed to match his appearance as a Master Lord in Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade, while adding elements from his artwork as an Einherjar from Fire Emblem Awakening. His moveset underwent drastic changes in his transition from Melee, having been buffed and partially reworked as a semi-clone of Marth. Finally, Roy has been given a Final Smash: Critical Hit, which operates differently from Marth and Lucina's version of the attack and involves him swinging his sword overhead to trap opponents before slashing them.
- Roy, the main character of Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade, returns for the first time since Melee! In The Binding Blade, Roy led the troops of Pherae into battle in his ailing father’s stead, and now he brings his speed and talent for short-range combat into this game. His sword, the Sword of Seals, is uniquely powerful at the base of the blade.
- (GBA) Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade
- Roy (Alt.)
- Flare Blade creates an explosion in front of Roy that can be charged by holding down the button. Take care, though, because at the highest levels of charge, Roy himself will catch fire and take damage! His side special, Double-Edge Dance, changes for each strike after the first depending on whether you hold up or down while attacking.
- (GBA) Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade
As a playable character
Roy makes his return in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as an unlockable character. For the first time in the series, Roy is fully voiced in English by Ray Chase, his voice actor since Fire Emblem Heroes. Roy also serves as the original fighter of Chrom, who retains his move-set albeit while having a consistent damage output across the entirety of his attacks.
- Roy is the first playable character in the Super Smash Bros. series whose Smash appearance predates his first appearance in his home series (his own game, Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade, was released four months later after the Japanese release of Melee). This is followed by Corrin (SSBWU/3DS), whose game was released 16 days after making his debut in Smash overseas (Corrin making his Smash debut on February 3rd, 2016, while his game was released on February 19th, 2016).
- Roy made a cameo appearance as a child at the end of Fire Emblem (the prequel to Fire Emblem: The Binding Blade). Because Fire Emblem (subtitled Rekka no Ken in Japan) was the first in the series to be released outside Japan, the relevance of the boy's appearance is largely missed by most Westerners.
- Roy, Dr. Mario and Mewtwo are the only characters to skip a Super Smash Bros. game (being cut from Super Smash Bros. Brawl, but returning in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U).