Super Smash Bros. Ultimate contains a spectator mode for a reason. As much fun as it is to play a few rounds of this truly ultimate title, it’s even more fun to watch skilled (and lucky) fighters go head to head in all-out combat. Every good fight comes to an end, though, and it’s often the final moments that stand out the most with these matches. That’s why we’ve put together this list of the best Smash finishes ever.
Isabelle vs. Inkling: The underdog finish
Here’s an unequal match for you: the super-mobile, high-tier Inkling versus slow and steady (and low-tier) Isabelle. Isabelle’s a strong (and adorable) fighter; it’s true. But it’s easy to see her shortcomings up against the faster Inkling and their far-reaching attacks. With over 100% damage, Isabelle takes advantage of an ill-timed ranged attack from the Inkling and manages to score a victory.
There’s another life left, though. Now with over 200% damage, Isabelle is obviously playing conservatively, dodging and evading whenever possible at first. Then the Inkling is on the defensive, forced to avoid the Gyroid rockets and Isabelle’s periodic attack flurries — but it’s too late. A recovery attempt that might have avoided a hidden Gyroid rocket is met, instead, with a strong aerial attack from Isabelle, and Isabelle wins the match with that impressive finish.
Daisy vs. Snake: The flashy finish
This face-off between Daisy and Snake is the kind of intense fight with a flashy finish you’d expect from competitions. So it shouldn’t be surprising to learn it was, indeed, from a competition — the Jamaica ESports Initiative qualifiers. It’s a big turnaround too and easily one of the most impressive Smash finishes.
Daisy is crushing her opponent for the first half of the clip, but then Snake bounces back like magic. With a combination of strong melee moves and Snake’s signature missile launcher attack, he’s able to claim most of the stage in one form or another. Then it all comes down to hand-to-hand, with a truly impressive finish. Snake follows a grab attack up with a powerful smash attack, and Daisy goes flying. We probably shouldn’t be surprised, given how powerful Snake is anyway.
Pichu vs. Ice Climbers: The unlikely finish
This one is a showcase for the unexpected. With Pichu vs. Ice Climbers, though, it might not be immediately obvious who the unlikely hero is. Pichu has sustained a good deal of damage by the time the clip starts and is in a tough spot. The Ice Climbers’ pesky B-neutral keeps Pichu from recovering, dealing damage with multiple hits and keeping Pichu off the stage.
That’s when the player decides to take a risk. They drop Pichu down just under the stage and use Skull Bash to cover a good deal of space. Then they take advantage of Pichu’s two-part Quick Attack to cover the rest of the space and land at the left edge of the stage. From there, it’s a simple matter of dodging, shielding, and then ending the match with a spectacular smash attack. Impressive work for a small critter like Pichu.
Mr. Game & Watch vs. the world: The sneaky finish
This video is a compilation of comebacks, but one of the first, which we’ve cued up, is easily one of the best Smash Ultimate finishes in the video and in general. Ganondorf occupies the power position here, with Peach and Mr. Game & Watch stuck off the stage to the right. Any attempt to recover would doubtlessly end in failure, but up specials and float jumps won’t last forever.
So instead, Mr. Game & Watch skillfully uses an up special aimed at Peach, knocking her off the screen. Ganondorf makes the mistake of turning around and waiting for Peach to respawn, letting G&W slip past and K.O. both Peach and Ganondorf with a lucky, well-timed hammer attack. It’s one of the most impressive Smash finishes from one of the least likely candidates. Bravo.
Link vs. Fox: The technical finish
— Peco (@Switch_movie_SS) March 1, 2020
Twitter user Peco is known for posting videos of outrageously skilled maneuvers in Breath of the Wild, but they sometimes post Smash Ultimate videos as well. This one in particular is a frenetic and intense showdown between Link and Fox McCloud. The ending is absolute gold, though. Fox gets launched off the stage and is plotting his return. Meanwhile, Link shoots a series of arrows at his bomb that has been sitting out, causing it to roll off the stage — and directly into Fox for the K.O.
Link vs. Ganondorf: The failed finish
— Peco (@Switch_movie_SS) March 3, 2020
Another Peco finish doesn’t go quite as you’d expect, though even a failed effort can be an impressive finish. This match is a mashup of classics: Link versus Ganondorf on the arcade Donkey Kong stage. Everything seems to be going well at first for Link. Ganondorf’s off the stage with very little chance of recovery, but Link goes after him to finish the job personally.
Only this time, something goes wrong. Link lands his move, but Ganondorf escapes afterwards, and Link falls to his doom. It’s one of the most impressive Smash finishes, but not for the hero this time around.
Mario vs. Samus: The low-down finish
Smash Ultimate is a fun and balanced game pic.twitter.com/XSVl99ZqKK
— ? Richy (@Richy_SDB) February 29, 2020
Finally, we’ve got another risky, impressive finish. The big break in the match comes when Mario forces Samus off the edge with a smash attack. After that, neither fighter can get the upper hand, and Samus recovers. But Mario pulls off a surprise down attack that barely hits Samus while she’s still gripping the ledge and ends the match.
A two-frame attack, where one fighter performs a down-based attack at just the right moment (two frames into the grab, if you want to get technical), would certainly have been interesting, but this one is actually riskier. As we saw above, any down attack off the ledge runs into multiple risks, and Mario juuust about missed anyway. It’s an impressive finish, but small wonder some could be miffed about the balance.
Even if some of us might not be able to pull them off, watching others land an impressive finish or ten is its own form of satisfaction. We know these are nowhere near all the most impressive Smash finishes out there, though, so let us know your favorites in the comments!