The Special Flag first appeared in a Namco game called Rally-X, but has appeared in many Namco games, such as Dig Dug 2, Tekken Tag Team Tournament 2, and even Star Fox Assault, they usually give bonus points to the player who obtains it.
When used, the character will hold it in the air and become immobile for 3 seconds; the successful completion of its use will add a KO to the user's score in a timed match, or give the user an additional stock in a stock match. If a character takes any hit while using the Special Flag, they will automatically drop it, resetting the time needed to use the flag as well.
While holding the flag, all grounded up, down, and neutral standard attacks will activate the flag. A dash attack will not activate the flag. The flag can be tossed away without using it with the grab button.
Given the nature of the Special Flag's bonus, it can only appear in variations of Time and Stock matches, and will not appear at all in Coin or Stamina battles, even if it is enabled in the Item Switch. It also does not appear in Smash Tour battles.
Additionally, if a fighter has the maximum amount of stocks (99) and uses a Special Flag, nothing will happen. This will not stop a computer player from attempting to use it.
This item appeared as a hidden object in the 1983 arcade game Xevious. Picking one up would give you an extra life. In Smash Bros., it shows up for you to grab during battles. It may seem like nothing is happening, but holding it high will earn you an extra stock in a stock battle or a KO in a timed battle.
- Arcade - Rally-X (1980)
- Arcade - Xevious (1983)
Special Flags have appeared in multiple games developed by Namco. The item debuted in the maze game Rally-X, acting as an item that had to be collected by the player alongside other flags scattered throughout levels; the Special Flag, however, gives double the score of a normal flag and would double the values of every flag collected for the rest of the level unless the player loses a life.
The item has appeared in more recent games by Namco, often acting as an easter egg to players; among these appearances include Star Fox: Assault and Tales of Vesperia. Similar to the various series symbols that have appeared in the Smash Bros. series, the Special Flag has also been a flagship symbol for the company, even being used as the favicon for its official website.
- CPU players have notable behaviours for a Special Flag: if any other fighter attempts to use it, all CPU players will focus their attention on him in an attempt to knock the flag out of his hand. Low level CPUS generally stare at the player for a few seconds before reacting, usually giving human players a free point/stock. If a CPU player grabs hold of it, however, it may proceed to use the flag if no other fighters are close by, but are extremely likely to throw the flag offstage as soon as possible even if the coast is clear. This makes the Special Flag one of the few items CPU players are willing to discard from play.
- This is the only item in Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS / Wii U that can be thrown but cannot be used to deal any damage.
- If a player is in the process of holding the flag and a trapping Final Smash with a cut scene occurs, at the end of the Final Smash, the player immediately drops the flag and must start over.