Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (SSBU)

Zelda Guide: Matchup Chart and Combos

July 2022 Major Tier List Update!
13.0 Best Character Tier List

Patch Notes and Updates
All Update and Patch Note History
Ver. 13.0.1 Patch Notes and Balance Changes

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Zelda Guide

This is a guide to using Zelda in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Zelda's bread and butter combos, how to unlock, frame data, alt costumes and skins, as well as Zelda's matchups, counters, and tier list placement can all be found here.

Zelda Tier and Overview

Stats and General Info

Zelda Image
Game Series The Legend of Zelda
Smash Bros. Debut Super Smash Bros. Melee
Fighter Number 17
Unlock Order 2
Number of Jumps 2
Weight 85 Units (72/87)
Dash Speed 1.43 (81/87)
Air Speed 1.092 (39/87)
Fast Fall Speed 2.16 (71/87)
Special Attributes None

Tier List Placement

SSBU Zelda Icon D Tier Tier

A zoner with some hard hitting moves

Smash Ultimate Zelda is a character who has several moves that deal heavy damage and can KO. Moves such as Neutral Aerial, Neutral Special, and Forward Smash Attack can be used to wiff punish opponents and deal damage, while Forward/Back Aerial, Up Special, and Forward Smash are also used to take stocks.

Her weakness mainly lies in her relatively slow frame data, which makes it tough for her to punish quicker characters. She relies heavily on her Down B other specials to zone out opponents and play from a safe distance.

See Our Tier List Here!

Zelda's Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths ・Neutral B is great as a combo breaker and get-off-me tool
・Very powerful back throw
・Several of her attacks deal high damage and knockback
・Down Special can be charged to zone out opponents and deal heavy damage
Weaknesses ・Forward / Back Aerial have significant lag and are punishable
・Very light and gets KO'ed early
・Poor mobility

Zelda Matchup Chart

Matchup Chart

Zelda Image
GreninjaPalutenaWolfZero Suit Samus
ChromCloudDiddy KongFalcoFoxHeroIkeInklingJokerLucinaMega ManMin MinPeach/DaisyPichuPikachuPit/Dark PitPokemon TrainerR.O.B.Rosalina & LumaRoySheikShulkSonic
BayonettaBowserBylethCaptain FalconCorrinDonkey KongDuck HuntIsabelleKenLinkLucasLuigiMarioMarthMeta KnightMewtwoMii BrawlerMr. Game & WatchPac-ManRobinRyuSamus/Dark SamusSephirothSimon/RichterSnakeSteveTerryToon LinkVillagerWarioWii Fit TrainerYoshiYoung Link
Banjo & KazooieBowser Jr.Dr. MarioGanondorfIce ClimbersIncineroarJigglypuffKing DededeKing K. RoolKirbyLittle MacLucarioMii GunnerMii SwordfighterNessOlimarPiranha PlantRidley

Notes About Matchup Chart

1. -2 = Disadvantage. -1 = Slight Disadvantage or Even. 0 = Even. +1 = Slight Advantage or Even. +2 = Advantage.
2. The matchup chart was based around both the opinions of professional players of each character, as well as our own experience through playing Zelda.
3. Characters within each tier are unordered
4. Pokemon Trainer's individual Pokemon (Squirtle, Ivysaur, and Charizard) as well as Echo fighters with no significant difference than their regular counterpart are not shown.
5. For other characters who are not shown here, we are still investigating the matchup.

Zelda Combos

Throw Combos
Up Throw→Jump→Up Air
Down Throw→B-air
Grounded Combos
Up Special→Tilt the stick up
Up Tilt→Up Tilt→Up Smash
Build Up Down Special→Dash→Jump→D-air

Throw Combos Explanation

Combo 1
Combo 2
Up Throw→Jump→Up Air
This combo can be used on opponents with lower percents. This is an easy combo that can rack up 30% in damage, so be sure to implement it into your gameplay.
Down Throw→B-air
This combo can only be used on opponents with middle percents or lower. This move can kill on the ledge depening on your opponents percentage.

Grounded Combos Explanation

Combo 3
Combo 4
Combo 5
Up Special→Tilt the stick up
This combo can be used on opponents with higher percents. If an opponent rushes in for a dash attack, use this combo to catch them.
Up Tilt→Up Tilt→Up Smash
This combo can be used on opponents with lower percents. This is an easy combo that can rack up 30% in damage, so be sure to remember it.
Build Up Down Special→Dash→Jump→D-air
This combo can be used at various percents. While executing the combo is fairly simple, pulling it off in a real match is extremely difficult. Use down special to send your Phantom off the stage in order to spike your opponent.

Zelda Frame Data and Moveset

Best Out of Shield Options

Move Frames
Up B 6 Frames
Neutral Air 9 Frames
Up Smash 9 Frames
Forward Air 9 Frames
Back Air 9 Frames
Shield Grab 14 Frames
Jump > Neutral B 14 Frames

Zelda has pretty good out of shield game, with most of her aerials coming out in 9 frames, as well as Up B, which comes out in 6 frames, and can KO. For opponents at higher percents, use Up B out of shield and continue holding up to carry them upward for a KO. Only use this on unsafe moves though, because it leaves Zelda extremely punishable if whiffed.

Both forward and back air can also KO if sweet spotted, making them good out of shield punishes as well. Jumping into neutral B is another option, as intangibility will actually come out on frame 7, allowing her to avoid taking damage from an opponent's followup attack.

Jab (Neutral Attack)

1v1 Damage (%) Startup Frames
Jab 1
3 4
Jab 2 3 6
Jab 3 0.24 -
Jab 4 0.24 -
Jab 5 0.12 -
Jab 6
(loops on jab 3 for continuous inputs)
0.36 -
Rapid Jab (Finisher) 3.6 6


Zelda's jab is very quick, making it good for a fast whiff punish, or as a get-off-me tool. It has a rapid jab, which loops until the finisher, and can even KO at higher percents.

Dash Attack / Tilts

1v1 Damage (%) Startup Frames
Dash Attack
(Dash + A)
14.4 6
Dash Attack
(sour spot)
12 6
Dash Attack
(late hit)
7.2 12
Forward Tilt
(← or → + A)
14.4 12
Forward Tilt
(Sour spot)
12 12
Up Tilt
(↑ + A)
8.64 7
Down Tilt
(↓ + A)
6.6 5

Dash Attack

Zelda's dash attack is extremely fast, making it good for whiff punishing or catching landings. In some cases, it can even KO.

Forward Tilt

Zelda's forward tilt has great range, and can be used to poke at opponent from a distance. Its startup is somewhat slow, but it has considerable knockback if the sweetspot hits.

Up Tilt

Zelda's up tilt has quick startup, and hits an area above her head, going from her front to her back. It is mostly useful as an anti-air, but its low endlag also makes it useful as a combo starter.

Down Tilt

Zelda's down tilt is her fastest tilt, and is great for poking at her opponents. From about 30%, it will send opponents upward enough to combo into a forward air.

Smash Attacks

1v1 Damage (%) Startup Frames
Forward Smash
(Smash ← or → + A)
1.2 16/18/20/22
Forward Smash
(last hit)
15.6 24
Up Smash 1
(Smash ↑ + A)
2.4 9
Up Smash 2
(latter ticks)
0.96 25
Up Smash 2
(last hit)
6.0 34
Down Smash
(Smash ↓ + A)
14.4 5
Down Smash
(Weak Hit)
12 13

Forward Smash

Zelda's forward smash has great range, and deals good damage and knockback. It has a long lasting hitbox, making it good for catching jumpy opponents, and for ledgetrapping. When spaced properly, it is safe on shield, and can be difficult to punish.

Up Smash

Zelda's up smash comes out quick, and deals good damage and knockback. It is used as an anti-air for catching an opponent's aerial approach.

Down Smash

Zelda's down smash is extremely quick, with only 5 frames of startup. It hits on both sides of Zelds, making it good for catching rolls, or as a get-off-me tool. It has relatively low end lag, so it can be hard to punish.


1v1 Damage (%) Startup Frames
Neutral Air
(A + no direction while airborne)
3 6/10/14/18
Neutral Air
(sour spots)
1.8 6/10/14/18
Neutral Air
(last hit)
6 6/10/14/18
Forward Air
(Hold ← or → in the direction you are facing + A while airborne)
24 6
Forward Air (sour spot) 4.8 6
Forward Air (late Hit) 4.8 7
Back Air
(Hold ← or → in the direction you are facing + A while airborne)
24 6
Back Air (sour spot) 4.8 6
Back Air (late Hit) 4.8 7
Up Air 1
(↑ + A While Airborne)
20.4 7
Up Air (late hit) 19.2 14
Down Air
(↓ + A While Airborne)
19.2 14
Down Air
(↓ + A While Airborne)
4.8 15

Neutral Air

Neutral air is quick, and hits on both sides of Zelda. If fast falled, it can be used as a combo starter. Beware that opponents may sometimes fall out of the multi-hits and counter with an attack. It is -10/-9 on shield, so it must be spaced properly to avoid a punish.

Forward Air

Zelda's forward air is one of her KO tools, as it comes out quick and has a sweetspot on the tip that can KO at pretty early percents. The sweetspot is only active for a single frame, and instead hitting with the sourspot will barely cause the opponent to flinch, allowing them to counterattack in most cases. It is a bit of a risky option, but very rewarding if spaced correctly, and can even be used out of shield.

Back Air

Zelda's Back air is essentially the same as her forward air, although it hits in the opposite direction, and is slightly stronger.

Up Air

Zelda's up air is a powerful move that sends opponents upward. From about 100%, it can be comboed from down throw for a KO confirm.

Down Air

Zelda's down air hits below her, and has a meteor hitbox. The startup hitbox is very powerful, but the late hitboxes are quite weak. It can be used for an offstage KO, although Zelda has less risky options she can use for edgeguarding.


1v1 Damage (%) Startup Frames
Neutral Special
2.4 11
Neutral Special
(last hit)
6 26
Side Special
(no charge)
8.4 44
Side Special
(sour spot no charge)
8.4 44
Side Special
(max charge)
16.8 44
Side Special
(max charge sour spot)
8.4 44
Up Special
(ground hit)
7.2 6
Up Special
(ground hit 2)
12 35
Up Special
(ground hit 2, sour spot)
8.4 35
Up Special (Aerial) 7.2
Up Special (Aerial hit 2) 14.4 35
Up Special (Aerial hit 2, sour spot) 9.6 35
Down Special
(1st charrge)
7.0 26
Down Special
(2nd charge)
9.8 28
Down Special
(3rd charge)
12.6 40
Down Special
(4th charge, horizontal slash)
16.9 46
Down Special
(4th charge, delayed)
18.4 53
Down Special
(fifth charge max duration)
21.2 57
Down Special
(fifth charge max duration)
21.2 127

Neutral Special (Nayru's Love)

Zelda's neutral special envelops her in crystals, is intangible from frame 4, and has a hitbox from frame 11. It can reflect projectiles, and is a great tool for getting out of disadvantage thanks to its intangibility and long lasting hitbox. It does have rather short range and long endlag, so be careful not to overuse it.

Side Special (Din's Fire)

Zelda's side special sends a ball of fire forward, which will detonate and deal damage and knock back and opponent. Holding the special button allows you to send it further, and it can be steered with up and down. Once the special button is released, the explosion will detonate. It is mostly used for edgeguarding, as it is a low risk option Zelda can use from almost anywhere.

Up Special (Farore's Wind)

Zelda's up special allows her to teleport in a gust of wind. By holding the stick in a direction, you can alter where Zelda reappears, and holding it diagonally down in either direction allows her to travel shorter distances horizontally. The teleporting and reappearing animations both have a hitbox on them, and can be used to KO opponents at higher percents. Thanks to its fast startup, it is a great out of shield punish, and by holding up after teleporting, it can lead to a KO. Beware that it is unsafe on shield, and has noticeable endlag, so it is punishable if you land too close to an opponent or whiff the move.

Down Special (Phantom Slash)

An essential part to Zelda's gameplay, her down special summons a phantom knight who will strike ahead of her. By pressing B at any point in summoning the phanom, it will lunge forward even if incomplete, and by waiting until the end, the phantom that spawns will become more powerful. If Zelda is attacked while summoning the phantom, it will break, so it is important to use it when you are safe from the opponent. The phantom also functions as a projectile, so it can be reflected, but Zelda can counter this with her neutral special.

Grabs and Throws

1v1 Damage (%) Startup Frames
Pummel 1.56 2
Grab (Normal) - 10
Dash Grab - 13
Pivot Grab - 14
Forward Throw (Hitbox)
(← or → While Grabbing)
12 30
Back Throw (Hitbox)
(← or → While Grabbing)
14.4 27
Up Throw (Hitbox)
(↑ While Grabbing)
13.2 30
Down Throw (per tick)
(↓ While Grabbing)
1.8 25/31/37/43
Down Throw (last hit) 2.4 51

Forward Throw

Zelda's forward throw sends an opponent forward. It does not combo into anything and cannot be used to KO, so it is instead used to gain stage control or put an opponent off stage.

Back Throw

Zelda's back throw also does not combo, but when used near the ledge, it can KO opponents at around 100%.

Up Throw

Zelda's up throw is very powerful, and can KO opponents around 140%. From about 20~30%, it can also combo into up air.

Down Throw

Zelda's down throw sends an opponent upward, and can combo into her aerials such as back air or up air for a KO.

Final Smash

Attack Name How to Use Effect
Triforce of Wisdom Press B after obtaining the Smash Ball Seals an opponent in the Triforce of Wisdom, dealing lots of damage and ending with strong knockback. For opponents with higher than 100%, they will be instantly KO'ed without being knocked away.

Zelda Balance Changes

Version 13.0.0 Balance Patch

Neutral Attack 1 Reduced vulnerability.
Flurry Attack Increased power.
Up Smash Attack Extended launch distance.
Down Smash Attack Extended launch distance.
Down Air Attack Increased the high-damage range.

Version 11.0.0 Balance Patch

General Matched the vulnerability with other fighters when falling in place.

Version 10.1.0 Balance Patch

Side Smash Attack Made it easier to hit multiple times.
Increased final attack's range.

Version 7.0.0 Balance Patch

Side Tilt Attack Increased power.
Extended launch distance.
Neutral Air Attack Reduced vulnerability when landing after using the move.
Made it easier to hit multiple times.
Up Air Attack Increased attack range.
Increased the amount of time hit detection lasts.
Decreased power for the latter half of the time hit detection lasts.
Extended launch distance when hit in the high-damage range.
Side Special Increased the high-damage range.
Increased the amount of time hit detection lasts.
Down Special Increased power.
Extended launch distance.
Other Increased shield size.

Version 3.0.0 Balance Patch

Down Special Reduced the power against shields.

Major Changes from Smash 4

Holding A will make the attack continue.
Side Special
(← or → + B)
No longer leaves Zelda helpless when used in the air. Buff
Down Special
(↓ + B)
Phantom is summoned and can be used quicker. Greater combo potential = Buff.
Up Smash
(↑ + A)
All hits do not connect as easily. Nerf

How to Unlock Zelda

Unlocking Via Smash Mode
2nd Fighter Unlocked
After unlocking Ness, let 10 minutes pass OR play another battle in smash after soft-resetting OR return to the menu from World of Light
Unlocking via Classic Mode
Clear Classing Mode 4 times using Kirby.
Unlocking via World of Light
Sacred Land / Lost Woods

There are three ways to unlock Zelda. Completing any of these, then defeating Zelda when they appear in the “a New Challenger Appears” screen will allow you to use them afterward.

How to Unlock Characters Fast

Zelda Alt Costumes and Skins

Zelda Reveal Trailer

Smash Ultimate Character Guides

List of Fighters
Tier List
Tier List
Unlocking Characters
Unlocking Fighters

Character Stat Lists

Character Stats
Weights of All Characters Run Speeds of All Characters
Air Speeds of All Characters Fast Fall Speeds of All Characters


1 Anonymous8 months

I feel like Zelda is better than C tier, personally I think she belongs in at least B tier, maybe even the bottom of A tier


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