- This article is about Young Link's appearance in Super Smash Bros. Melee. For the character in other contexts, see Young Link. For information about the character of whom Young Link is a clone, see Link.
Young Link (こどもリンク, Child Link) is an unlockable character in Super Smash Bros. Melee. He is a direct clone of Link, with some minor differences. Young Link was replaced with Toon Link in Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
Young Link currently ranks 16th on the tier list in the E tier, two places higher than Link. This is mostly due to him having good combos, grapple, and projectile game. However, he is very light, sports abysmal power with a few KO options, and has a predictable recovery.
How to unlock
- Beat Classic or Adventure mode with 10 characters.
- Play 500 Vs. Mode matches.
When fought, Young Link appears on Great Bay, with Saria's Song playing in the background.
Young Link is a faster, smaller, lighter, and less powerful version of Link. Also, Young Link's wavedash is far faster and longer than Link's. Young Link has multiple useful projectiles, leading to potent combos, spacing techniques, and edgeguarding tactics. His grab has long reach due to being a tether grab, but it suffers from high lag. Young Link's Neutral Aerial has good knockback and fast speed when SHFFL'd. However, he can still be comboed easily and chain grabbed by certain characters
For killing options, his Dash Attack can kill horizontally at high percentages, his Down Aerial spikes at the hilt of his sword, and his Down Smash is a powerful killing move used to finish opponents off at the end of combos. However, Young Link can still have trouble scoring KOs, as his finishers can be difficult to land cleanly.
As for recovery, his recovery is better than Link's, but is overall poor for a character of his weight class. His Hookshot can also be used as a form of recovery, but it's fairly short. His Deku Shield can act on its own and defend against projectiles when standing stationary, but this only happens occasionally, unlike Link. Young Link can also wall jump, and is the only character that is required to use this technique in a Target Test.
Differences between Link
- Young Link wields the Kokiri Sword instead of the Master Sword.
- Young Link's sword hits (excluding his u-throw and u-special) make a punch/kick sound effect instead of a slashing sound effect.
- Young Link's taunt is different and longer than Link's.
- Young Link is shorter than Link, condensing his hurtbox, but also his range.
- Young Link dashes faster than Link.
- Young Link is overall weaker than Link in KO potential.
- Young Link's Deku Shield is weaker than the Hylian Shield in protection, as projectiles that are strong enough will ignore and penetrate through the shield.
- Unlike Link, Young Link can wall jump, aiding his recovery, although mostly situational.
- Young Link is significantly lighter than Link. While this drastically worsens his endurance for both horizontal and vertical survival, it makes him invulnerable to Fox's waveshine combos, as he is knocked down by the shine as opposed to pushed back.
- Forward tilt has less starting lag.
- Down tilt's meteor smash hitbox is placed at the tip as opposed to the hilt, allowing Young Link to safely space.
- Neutral aerial is stronger than Link's.
- Forward aerial is a one-hit attack.
- Down aerial has a hitbox on the sword's hilt that inflicts a powerful meteor smash (second strongest in the game) with a fire effect.
- Fire Bow's arrows (as the name implies) have the flame effect, and will light opponents on fire.
- Grounded Spin Attack lands multiple hits instead of one, allowing it to trap opponents within its hitboxes, and the late hitboxes inflict more damage.
- Nonetheless, the late hitboxes do not semi-spike and even if all hits connect, it is still weaker than Link's clean Spin Attack in damage.
|Neutral attack||3%||Young Link uses his sword to perform a three-hit attack with the second hit being cancelled into a series of rapid sword jabs by pressing the A button repeatedly.|
|Forward tilt||12% (tip), 11% (base), 10% (body)||Young Link briefly holds his sword over his head and swings it downwards.|
|Up tilt||8%||Young Link slashes upward, covering a large arc over his body.|
|Down tilt||7% (tip), 9% (base), 10% (body)||Young Link swipes his sword at the opponent's feet. The tip of the sword can meteor smash.|
|Dash attack||11% (tip), 10% (body)||Young Link dashes forward and strikes with a downward swing of his sword.|
|Forward smash||10%||Young Link performs a downward swing with his sword while taking a step forward. If the A button is immediately pressed after the first swing, Young Link will follow-up with a more powerful horizontal slash. The first hit contains low knockback that makes it easier to connect with the second hit. Unlike most smash attacks, the second hit does not increase in damage or knockback when charged.|
|9% (tip), 11% (body), 12% (base & arm)|
|Up smash||3% (hit 1), 2% (hit 2), 7%-8% (hit 3 clean), 8%-9% (hit 3 late)||Young Link slashes upwards with his sword three consecutive times. The last hit of this attack sends opponents upward.|
|Down smash||13%/7% (front), 12%/6% (back)||Young Link performs two downward strikes on each side with his sword. Deals more damage towards the hilt of the sword.|
|Neutral aerial||12% (clean), 8% (late)||Young Link performs a jump kick attack in midair that is a sex kick.|
|Forward aerial||12%/11%/9% (clean), 8%/7%/5% (late)||Young Link performs two spinning sword attacks in midair. Interestingly, this attack can only hit once.|
|Back aerial||7% (hits 1-2)||Young Link performs a reverse double-kick attack.|
|Up aerial||15% (clean), 12% (late)||Young Link thrusts his sword overhead to attack opponents above him.|
|Down aerial||14%/16% (clean), 17%/12% (late), 8%/9% (after bounce)||Young Link drops downward while holding his sword like a pogo stick. An attack that deals decent damage and causes Young Link to bounce after hitting a foe, making it possible to hit the same foe twice. There is a sweetspot located at the hilt of the sword that meteor smashes the opponent and deals flame damage.|
|Grab aerial||Hookshot||5%||Young Link uses his Hookshot to attack enemies from a distance. The Hookshot itself can be used to wall grapple. Interesting, this attack is not affected by stale move negation.|
|Grab||Hookshot||—||Young Link grabs enemies from afar by using his Hookshot.|
|Pummel||3%||Young Link attacks the enemy by using the hilt of his sword.|
|Forward throw||3% (hit 1), 3% (throw)||Young Link launches the opponent away with a front kick attack.|
|Back throw||3% (hit 1), 3% (throw)||Young Link takes the opponent behind him and kicks them away.|
|Up throw||2% (hit 1), 4% (throw)||Young Link tosses the opponent above his head and performs a leaping slash with his sword.|
|Down throw||4% (hit 1), 2% (throw)||Young Link takes the opponent on the floor and drops on top of them.|
|Floor attack (front)||6%||Young Link performs a slash on both sides whilst getting up.|
|Floor attack (back)||6%||Young Link performs a slash on both sides whilst getting up.|
|Edge attack (fast)||8%||Young Link performs a downward slash while returning to the stage.|
|Edge attack (slow)||8%||Young Link slowly climbs onto the stage and stabs his sword forward. Only the sword contains a hitbox, meaning that opponents can avoid this attack by staying close to the edge.|
|Neutral special||Bow||8-15%||Young Link shoots a flaming arrow at the enemy. Doesn't travel as far as Link's arrows, but they do have more hitstun.|
|Side special||Boomerang||16% (throw), 19% (smash throw), 7% (far), 2% (return)||Young Link throws his boomerang forward. The Boomerang's distance can be extended by inputting this move as a smash attack and have its trajectory altered with the control stick.|
|Up special||Spin Attack||Ground: 1% (hits 1-12), 3% (hit 13)|
Air: 3% (hit 1), 2% (hits 2-4), 3% (hit 5)
|Young Link performs a spinning attack that hits multiple times before launching the opponent away. When use din the air, Young Link will jump while performing the attack, mainly being used as a recovery move. While Young Link is performing the final strike in midair, he can grab the ledge of a stage even if he isn't directed towards one.|
|Down special||Bomb||2-7% (contact), 2% (explosion hits 1-3)||Young Link pulls out a bomb. The bomb will explode on impact of when the fuse runs out. The bomb can also hurt Young Link, which can be used to regain another Spin Attack if one has already been used.|
- Takes out a bottle of Lon Lon Milk, drinks it, and then wipes his mouth. This is the longest taunt in the game.
- Young Link can wall-grapple.
- Deku Shield can defend against projectile attacks. If crouching, even a fully charged Charge Shot from Samus can be blocked.
- Arrows catch opponent on fire and adds small "stun".
- More control over his Boomerang than Link.
- Expert use of the Reverse Angle Boomerang.
- Spin Attack traps enemy and can hit multiple times.
- Can perform the Boomerang Superjump.
- Hitting an opponent with a Bomb makes for a good combo start/and finisher.
- Boomerang + Fully charged Fire Bow + Repeat - When there is distance between Young Link and the opponent, this combo does some damage and confuses them to a point that they want to break something, but it doesn't work on Fox or Falco because they can reflect it.
- Dash Attack - On heavier characters Young Link can keep running at them and slashing them once with a Dash Attack until they get to the edge.
With his long grab range and unique throws, Young Link has various setups to combo foes.
- Down Throw + Spin Attack - This doesn't work on lighter characters such as Kirby & Jigglypuff or when the opponent is at a high percentage. It can lead into another grab or ground move.
- Down Throw + Up Tilt - A reliable combo against fast fallers, and can KO at very high percents.
- Down Throw + Up Smash - Similar to his Up Tilt combo, though better for damage racking.
- Down Throw + Up Tilt + Up Smash - At low percents, this is a devastating combo, with excellent damage, dealing usually around 23% damage.
- Down Throw + Down Smash - This combo does not always work, though when used at the right angle near ledges, it sets up for edgeguards.
- Down Throw + turn around + Down Tilt - A hard combo to pull off, Young Link must turn the opposite way when he finishes his Down Throw and use his Down Tilt, usually spiking the foe to the ground and set up other combos.
- Down Throw + turn around + Forward Smash - Useful for reliable kills.
- Up Throw + Up Tilt + Spin Attack - A basic low % combo where foes can be thrown directly above Link to set up an Up Tilt, and can be followed with his Spin Attack.
- Up Throw + Up Tilt + Up Smash - Similar to one of his Down Throw combos, best used at mid-percents. Usually does 24%.
- Up throw + Spin Attack - Best used against fast fallers, where the fast faller goes right into his Spin Attack.
- Up Throw + Up Smash + any Aerial Attack - A good mid % combo.
- Up Throw + jump + Spin Attack - A good higher % combo. This combo is DI-able and not all hits may connect, but is a good combo nonetheless.
- Forward Throw + Forward Tilt - A very basic combo at low %s, though predictable.
- Forward Throw + Forward Smash - Another basic but escapable combo, the chance of this combo working depends entirely on the foe's fast falling rate, weight, and Young Link's reaction time. Sometimes this combo doe not work at mid %.
- Forward Throw + Dash Attack - Best used at higher % when foe gets forcefully landed on the floor, also decent for KO-ing.
- Back Throw + Dash Attack - A basic combo similar to one of his Forward Throw combos.
- Back Throw + Forward Tilt - A predictable combo.
Young Link's attacks are not very strong. Instead, he depends more upon intricate combos and edgeguarding techniques. Young Link fares quite well off the stage and commands an arsenal of projectiles, each with unique trajectories and damage properties. These projectiles, when mixed with a good recovery, can stop the opponent from returning. Naturally, Young Link does best at finishing his opponents horizontally, since unlike his older counterpart, most of his moves send the opponent across instead of upwards. Young Link's best off-the-top finisher is definitely his Down Aerial, followed closely by his Up Aerial.
So with that said here are some of his better finishing off combos:
- Bomb Throw + Down Aerial - Works well against floaty opponents at percents around 70% and up.
- Up Throw + Up/Down Aerial - Choosing between both Aerial Attacks all depends on the opponent's current percentage. If very high (160%+) then go with the Up Aerial because it has a better chance of connecting. If they are at a lower percentage (between 100%-120%), use Down Aerial because it KO's at lower percentages.
- If the opponent is recovering from beneath the stage Young Link's Down Tilt can be timed so it spikes the opponent. Works best on Fox, Falco, Ness, Luigi, Mario, and any other character with a predictable recovery.
In addition to the normal trophy about Young Link as a character, there are two trophies about him as a fighter, unlocked by completing the Adventure and All-Star modes respectively with Young Link on any difficulty.
- Young Link
- Link's younger incarnation is often considered to be the true Link: he was a young boy in the very first Legend of Zelda game, and he has appeared as a youth in most of the subsequent games. Since his debut on the original NES in 1987, Link's appearance has changed over and over again, each time adding to the mystique of his incomparable story.
- The Legend of Zelda [7/87]
- Young Link (Smash Red)
- Young Link is lighter and faster than his older self, and his Kokiri sword packs less punch. Even though his Boomerang has a shorter range, he has greater control over it. He's a smaller target, and while his Hookshot has less reach than older Link's, you can still use it in midair as a last-ditch attempt to grab a ledge.
- Young Link (Smash Blue)
- With a youthful spring in his step, Young Link can perform amazing wall-jumps. Once he hits a wall, tap the Control Stick in the opposite direction to send him leaping upward; you can practice to your heart's content in Target Test. His Spin Attack can strike multiple times even on the ground, and although it's hard to discern, so do his Bombs.
- Young Link is one of two clone characters to be ranked higher than his original, the other being Dr. Mario.
- Despite the Deku Shield's vulnerability to flames in Ocarina of Time, it is able to block fire projectiles in Melee.
- Young Link has the longest taunt in the game, with Mario having the second longest.
- Link and Young Link's Hookshot usees the same model; as a consequence, it looks somewhat oversized when used by the latter character.
- In Ocarina of Time, the game which Young Link is based on, he couldn't use the Hookshot or the Fire Arrows. He could only use them in Majora's Mask.
- Young Link, Toon Link and Roy are the only swordfighters in Super Smash Bros. whose swords consistently produce a punch/kick sound effect instead of a slashing sound effect for the majority of their attacks.
- Young Link and Falco are the only two characters in Melee to have the similar images with the same pose for their respective official artworks, alternate costumes, and "Challenger Approaching" screens.
- Young Link is the only character in Melee to not have any even matchups with any character.