Super Smash Bros. Melee/Marth

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Introduction

Marth is the fifth best character in the game under Shiek, Falco, Fox and now Jugglypuff. Marth has a slight disadvantage to Sheik at higher levels of play(3-5) but get raped by her at the scrub-mid level. Marth has an even matchup with Falco and has a slight advantage over Fox with (6-4) matchup.

Marth currently ranks 5th place on the tier list due to his excellent overall speed, disjointed range, priority, power when tipped attacks are landed (particularly his f-smash and dair), juggle/combo ability (including the notorious Ken Combo), edge-guard ability, metagame, and match-ups. On the downside, he lacks a projectile (although his f-smash can break most projectiles, and his high mobility can usually compensate), and he has an easily edge-guarded recovery (although several characters also have this problem).

"A" Moves Analysis

Note that all of Marth's attacks (save his grabs and Counter) have a sweetspot at the tip of his blade. Because of this, the term "tipper" refers to the sweetspotted version of the attack.

Ground attacks

Normal
  • Neutral attack - Swings upward, back and forth, with the first hit resembling his up-tilt. Can be chained continuously. If Marth is wearing a Bunny Hood, this attack can be chained twice as fast.
  • Dash attack - A quick upward diagonal slash with medium lag with extremely high priority. 10% base, 13% tip
  • Strong side - A fast forward sword swipe, much like the dash attack with less lag and a higher angle.
  • Strong up - Swings his sword in a large arc above his head, front to back. Good for setting up a Ken Combo. Non-tipped is a good KO move. Looks like the first hit of his neutral attack, though aims a bit higher. It also bears resemblance to his forward tilt. 9% base. 12% tip
  • Strong down - A quick crouching sword poke. Good for ground edge guard because it semi-spikes and usually it makes the opponent waste their midair jump while Marth can then edge guard. 9% base. 10% tip
Smash
  • Side smash - Rotates body counter-clockwise with a strong arc-like swing from his head to the ground, similar to the animation of his neutral special. Very fast and long ranged. The tip is on top knockback.
  • Up smash - A powerful upward thrust.
  • Down smash - Sweeps his sword on the ground toward the front then toward the back. If tipped it sends opponents upward with high vertical knockback, star KOing opponents at high percentage, and its one of the strongest down smash in the game. If hit at the base, it sends opponents with low horizontal knockback, but it can still KO at high percentage.
Other
  • Ledge attack - Flips onto ledge with a quick downward diagonal slash from left to right. 6% base. 8% tip.
  • 100% ledge attack - Quick, low, horizontal slash with medium lag. Less range than normal ledge attack. 10% base and tip.
  • Floor attack (from back) - Quick stab to the left followed by horizontal slash to the right. 6% base and tip.
  • Floor attack (from stomach) - Sweeps the tip of his sword on the ground front to back. Less range than floor attack from back. 6% base and tip.

Aerial attacks

  • Neutral aerial - Two horizontal slashes around himself. Both hits connect easily, can follow up into each other.
  • Forward aerial - Forward vertical slash (up to down). This attack sends opponents upward if tipped.
  • Back aerial - Bottom to top sword slash behind him.
  • Up aerial - A forward to back upward sword slash. Hit from close is as powerful as the tip but from medium distance is still weak.
  • Down aerial - A forward to back downward sword slash. A great spike when tipped.

Grabs & throws

  • Pummel - repeatedly knees opponent 2% damage.
  • Forward throw - Grabs and pushes forward, tripping with the leg. 4% damage.
  • Down throw - Hooks arm and drags to the floor sending the opponent backward. Set ups tipper forward smash at low percentages. 5% damage.
  • Back throw - Pulls and extends leg simultaneously. 4% damage.
  • Up throw - Powerful upward throw with one arm, though does not kill until damages higher than 150%. 4% damage.

"B" Moves List

B-This is used to break down a shield, edgeguard or when a Fair or Dair is inapplicable. Use carefully though because of the lag after the move.

6B-Known as the Dancing Blades. Holding the control stick down while performing it will lead to different effects.

2B-A counter attack move while Marth shines. If the opponent attacks during this duration, a counterattack starts. Don't spam this move as it is highly punishable.

UpB- Dolphin Slash

Move Analysis

Combos

Frame Data

Strategies

Dancing Blade Meteor

When using Marth's B-side attack (the Dancing Blade), after the initial B-side, the player can do up to 3 more swings in one sequence with Marth’s sword. There are multiple combinations of this attack, after the initial B-over to start the attack; the player can use B-up, B-over, or B-down. The third swing in the sequence is a very useful spike if B-down is pressed. It can be used to get kills at low percentages, by knocking the opponent off the ledge; make sure Marth is close to the edge, or on the edge as the opponent makes their way back toward the ledge, the player should start the B-over sequence. Time it so by the time the opponent is right back at the ledge, the player should be on the third swing, press b-down for the meteor smash.

Reverse Dolphin Slash

By starting Marth's up special attack, Dolphin Slash, and immediately pressing the opposite direction to which the player is currently facing, Marth will begin the first frame of his attack but change directions to finish the attack as if you were facing the other way. This variation has significantly increased knockback, but must be done at close range. The reason for this is that when Marth does his Dolphin Slash, he holds his sword behind him for a second. Given that Marth's attack are more powerful at the tip of the sword, as well as earlier into the Dolphin Slash, turning around at the start allows him to hit when the conditions are the best. This technique is also commonly performed out of a shield, by jump-canceling.

Reverse Counter

Oddly enough, Marth's counter attack has a second hit box which is much more powerful than the first. This hitbox is located in the first few pixels behind him and even more behind and above him. The blow is about as powerful as his f-smash (untippered) and serves as a flashy kill move in FFAs or 2v2s. However, it may only be used when one enemy (or teammate) is attacking from the front while the other approached from behind making the move extremely situational.

Ken Combo

Probably the most famous Marth combo of all is the Ken Combo. To do it, the player has to use multiple forward aerials (make sure they hit at close range or else the opponent will go up so the player can't combo anymore) and then once opponent is near the edge or trying to recover, the player uses a down aerial (spike in regular versions and meteor smash in PAL (make sure they hit with the tip or else it won't spike or meteor smash)) and then the opponent will be knocked downward and lose a life.

Match-ups

Serious Advantage Match-ups

Zelda, Mew2, Yoshi, Ness, G&W

Advantage Match-ups

Peach, IC, Doc, Mario, Samus, Pikachu, Mario, Luigi, DK, Link, Y.LInk, Roy

Fair Match-ups

Fox, Falco, C.Falcon, Ganon

Disadvantage Match-ups

Puff, Sheik

Serious Disadvantage Match-ups

None