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*       Ike Guide v1.3                                                        *
*       by Tha Stunna                                                         *
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Section 1: Introduction/Version History

Section 2: General Smash Bros Concepts
	2.1 -[ Basic fighting strategy ]-
	2.2 -[ Mixing up your moves ]-
	2.3 -[ Where to fight ]-

Section 3: Quick Strategy
	3.1 -[ Strategy tips ]-
	3.2 -[ Techniques ]-

Section 4: Moves
	4.1 -[ Ground A button attacks ]-
	4.2 -[ Aerial A button attacks ]-
	4.3 -[ B button attacks ]-
	4.4 -[ Grabs ]-
	4.5 -[ Move listing by KO power ]-

Section 5: Combos
	
Section 6: Detailed Strategies
	6.1 -[ Quick Draw ]-
	6.2 -[ Counter ]-	(Still in progress)
	6.3 -[ Approaches ]-
	6.4 -[ Defending ]-
	6.5 -[ Recovering ]-
		- Aether Recovery	[AET]
		- Quick Draw Recovery	[QUI]
		- Hanging from the Edge	[HAN]
	6.6 -[ Edgecamping ]-
		- Why edgecamp? [WHY]
		- General Tips [TIP]
		- Detailed Strategy [DET]
		- Improving your edgecamping skills [IMP]
	6.7 -[ KOing fast enemies ]-

Section 7: Anti-character Strategies
	Bowser 			[BOW]
	Captain Falcon 		[CAP] 	
	Diddy Kong 		[DID] 	
	Donkey Kong 		[DON] 	
	Falco 			[FAL]	
	Fox 			[FOX]	
	Ganondorf 		[GAN] 	
	Ice Climbers 		[ICE] 	
	Ike 			[IKE]	
	Jigglypuff 		[JIG]	
	King Dedede 		[DED] 	
	Kirby 			[KIR]	
	Link 			[LIN]	
	Lucario 		[LCO]	
	Lucas 			[LCS] 	
	Luigi 			[LUG]	
	Mario 			[MRO]
	Marth 			[MRH]
	Metaknight		[MET]  	
	Mr Game and Watch 	[GAM]	
	Ness 			[NES] (Still in progress)	
	Olimar 			[OLI] (Still in progress)	
	Pikachu 		[PIK] (Still in progress)	
	Pit 			[PIT] (Still in progress)	
	Pokemon Trainer 	[POK]
	- Charizard 		[CHA]
	- Ivysaur 		[IVY] (Still in progress)
	- Squirtle 		[SQU] (Still in progress)
	Princess Peach 		[PEA] (Still in progress)
	R.O.B. 			[ROB] 
	Samus			[SAM] (Still in progress)
	- Zero Suit Samus 	[ZER] (Still in progress)
	Snake 			[SNA] (Still in progress)
	Sonic 			[SON] (Still in progress)
	Toon Link 		[TOO] (Still in progress)
	Wario 			[WAR] (Still in progress)
	Wolf 			[WOL] (Still in progress)
	Zelda	 		[ZEL]
	- Sheik			[SHE]

Section 8: Game Type Strategies
	8.1 -[ Stock ]-
	8.2 -[ Time ]-
	8.3 -[ Sudden Death ]-
	8.4 -[ Team ]-
	8.5 -[ Items ]-

Section 9: Final Thoughts

Section 10: Contact Information

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*        Section 1: Introduction                                              *
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Ike is a powerful, heavy, melee-only character.  Here are some pros and cons:

Pros:
-Ike outdamages most characters with his attacks.
-Ike has superior knockback.
-Ike's uncharged forward smash can kill even heavyweights at 50% in the middle
 of Battlefield.
-Ike has good range on his ground attacks and great range on the forward smash
 and up smash.
-Ike has great range on most of his aerials.
-Ike's back aerial is very fast and quite powerful.
-Ike's down aerial is an excellent spike that pierces through almost any attack.
-Ike's neutral A combo does 16% damage and is fast.
-Ike is heavy, so he can survive longer than many characters.
-Ike has a Counter which scales and does a minimum of 10% damage.
-Ike has a powerful anti-air attack by using Aether.
-Ike can recover horizontally with Quick Draw or vertically with Aether.
-Aether can easily stop and damage an enemy standing on the stage to edgecamp
 you.
-Ike's aerials are useful for edgecamping due to their power and range.

Cons:
-Ike is a relatively big target.
-Ike is a slow runner and attacker.
-Ike has few (or no) true combos due to his slow attacks.
-Ike can't break fast combos, since his Counter has startup time and his 
attacks are slow.
-Ike can't jump very high.
-Ike has a lot of downtime (lag) after almost all of his attacks.
-Ike can kill himself easily by using an aerial after being knocked off, due to
 his downtime and weak jumping.
-Ike is heavy, so he can be juggled or chain thrown easily. (Yes, this is an 
advantage and disadvantage.)
-If Quick Draw hits a target in midair, Ike will become helpless and (usually)
 fall to his death.

Should you use him? Well, if you're into characters with good range and power,
Ike is one of the best.  Ike is fairly intuitive to play, with relatively few
tilt -> aerial -> more -> insanity combos, so that's a plus.  Ike's mistakes 
can be punished quite easily, so that is a downside.  If you're looking for a 
Roy replacement, Marth is more similar (who would have thought...) but Ike has
his merits.  If you're looking for the best character in the game or a combo
master, Ike isn't it.  If you want broken moves, Ike doesn't have them.  Ike
is a fairly popular character for new players online, so if you become good 
with him, you can surprise people by not being a weak player.

If you're reading this guide to beat Ike because you're having trouble playing
against him, my quick advice would be to play defensively and force him to 
miss or hit your shield, then counterattack.  Projectile spamming is always 
useful, as long as you cut it out and use other attacks or shield when he gets
close.

Who am I? I'm not a tournament player, but I'm pretty decent at this game. A
lot of my experience comes from random 2v2 online play through Wifi. In any 
case, judge the FAQ on its merits, not my credentials.


-[ Version history ]-

Added KO moves, Juggling sections for several characters.

6/6/10: (1.3) Added Wolf.  Updated Diddy and Donky Kong. Changed move 
rankings.  Added more KO moves/juggling sections.

11/5/09: Changed combo section, updated Charizard

11/4/09: (1.2) Added Ness, Charizard, Zelda, Sheik.  Slight updates on 
Link/moves/items/team sections.  Made neutral A combo, fair the only 5/5
moves, since they're the most commonly used.

10/11/09: (1.1) I, uh... wrote an Ike guide? Fancy that.  Updated Metaknight 
and Mr Game and Watch sections.  Expanded item section, slightly updated 
Counter section.  Contact information added at end of guide.

10/31/08: (1.0) First version.


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*       Section 2: General Smash Bros Concepts                                *
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2.1 -[ Basic fighting strategy ]-


There are three main ways to fight your opponent: attacks (which do damage and
 are not a grab), grabs, and shields (because you can counterattack after 
shielding an enemies attack).  They follow a rock-paper-scissors relationship:

Attacks beat grabs (some exceptions for ranged grabs or slow attacks)
Shields beat attacks
Grabs beat shields

Some attacks are classified more as grabs, like Yoshi's neutral B egg lay or
Kirby's neutral B swallow, because they pierce shields.  Other moves work more
like a shield, like Ike and Marth's counter, which work against attacks but 
not grabs.  Roughly speaking, a good strategy counters the opponents attack 
based on how much damage their attack does and how often they use it.  For 
instance, many beginners don't grab or shield much, so you should 
shield/counter them a lot.  Some speedy characters like to run at you and grab
you; using a fast attack on them is wise.  Of course, your opponent generally
won't tell you how they are going to attack, so you just have to watch their
strategy.  Many times you will be wrong; that's fine, just keep trying.  Any
time your opponent is beating you badly, think about how to beat their attack,
and you may just get better results.

This relationship applies to your attacks too; if your opponent is shielding
(which will happen quite often when you play as Ike), you need to mix in some
grabs.  Still, you are better off countering your opponent if possible, since
it's much harder to predict how your opponent will respond to your attacks.

2.2 -[ Mixing up your moves ]-


Most characters have a specialty; Ike is proficient at slow and powerful long
range melee strikes, while Sonic is excellent at quick and weak attacks.
However, every type of attack can be countered, so having attacks of the other
sort is essential.  For Ike, moves like his neutral A, A, A combo and his side
B Quick Draw charging attack work well to keep your opponent off balance.  For
Sonic, using his smashes from time to time will skew your opponents timing and
make your opponents worry more about missing an attack.  All characters should
mix up their play unless they are up against an opponent who is weak.

2.3 -[ Where to fight ]-


If you're damaged and your opponent isn't, fight near the center of the stage!
This concept is basic, but still important.  Conversely, if your opponent is
damaged and you aren't, fight them near the edges.  If you're both heavily
damaged, you should fight near the center if you are a heavier character.  The
exception to these general rules is when you KO people by sending them upward,
in which case you should always stay near the center if possible.  It's harder
to apply this concept when you don't have a ranged attack, since your opponent
can use projectiles to draw you to them, but it's still worth considering.

The best place to be is with your enemy between you and the edge of the stage,
particularly in levels like Bridge of Eldin where the edge is very close to
the stage.  Even a weak attack can KO your opponent, so this is very desirable.
Conversely, you don't want to be the person who is squashed between your
opponent and the edge, so you'll want to get back to the center quickly.
Jumping is usually the best way to do this, since rolling may just get you hit
and attacking is high risk and low reward.  Even if you get up smashed, that
generally won't knock you off the edge.

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*       Section 3: Quick Strategy                                             *
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3.1 -[ Strategy tips ]-


Here's some key strategy behind using Ike; keep this in mind as you read
through the rest of the guide.


1. Frequently use the neutral A, A, A combo in close quarters.


This combo is far faster than Ike's other moves and does an excellent 16%
damage, which is more damage than some other character's smash moves.  This
tip alone can make you far better with Ike.


2. Keep your enemies at the edge of your sword range.


Ike's advantages come from range, damage, and knockback, not speed, so you are
best off keeping your enemies at a distance.  The C stick can be used to attack
in midair so you can use the joystick to move slightly forward/backward as
needed.


3. Short-hop Ike's aerial forward A at enemies.


Ike's running attack is sluggish and has little damage; using his forward
aerial will give better damage and knockback, with the best range of any
forward aerial in the game.  This is also useful after using Aether,
Quick Draw, or a throw.  Against faster enemies, you'll need to use it more
defensively however.


4. Set your controller to tilts


Ike's smashes are too sluggish to be used regularly.  Ike's ftilt and utilt
are both quite effective, so setting your c stick to tilts gives you more
speed.  Even more importantly, Ike's dair is a good spike, but will kill you
with normal settings; with tilts, you won't fastfall to your death.


5. Knock enemies upward, then Aether them.


Aether has unusual properties in that enemies above you will get hit by your
flying sword but can't hit you back, even with a Counter (which is wasted on
your flying sword, unless they are at the very top of the attack).  Even if 
you miss, the rest of the attack will bring you back safely to the ground.  
This is a simple natural combo that is very effective, particularly with an up 
or down throw.


6. Learn Ike's key grab combos.


Up/Down throw -> Aether
Forward/Back throw (near edge) -> Shorthopped down aerial

Ike does not do much damage with his grabs, but he can usually combo a
vertical throw with Aether to do more damage than any of his normal uncharged
attacks.  Near the edge, he can toss heavier characters off and spike them
(ideally) to KO them even at 0%.


6. Stay near the ground.


Ike is vulnerable to juggling, lacks fast air attacks, and only has his down
aerial and Counter to defend against attacks from below.  Primarily stick with
short hops or Aether, both of which will keep you safely near the ground.


7. Shielding, air dodging, and rolling are still useful against fast or
charged attacks.


Although Ike has Counter, it is often too slow to deal with a barrage of fast
attacks and leave him vulnerable if your enemy doesn't attack.  Shielding is
faster and is often a good idea if you can't predict the timing of your
enemy's attacks.  Many opponents will try to let Ike make a move and then
exploit the downtime after his attacks; this will foil their plans.


8. Shield, sidestep, use the neutral A combo, or jump if you miss.


Ike's attacks have a lot of downtime, and your enemies will almost always
counterattack or grab you after you miss.  A quick response is generally the
best option.  This won't always work, but it certainly doesn't hurt, and is
essential for anyone trying to become an expert player.  Don't just stand
there.


3.2 -[ Techniques ]-


Some useful and/or common techniques are listed here; some of them are common
to all characters and are common terms, while others are Ike-specific and have
names made up by me.

- Air dodge

Press L or R in the air and Ike will become temporarily invulnerable; it's
very useful for dodging projectiles and some fast attacks, since it is faster
than Counter.

- B sticking

With a custom controller setup, you can set B special moves to the C-stick.
This is pretty worthless for Ike, especially since Quick Draw is frequently
charged.  You're better off with the default setup, particularly since Ike
frequently likes to space his aerials by pushing backward on the joystick
while pressing forward with the C-stick.

- Crawling

Some characters can move while crouched; Ike can't.

- Directional influence (DI)

When moving through the air, you can use the joystick to influence where you
go.  This is useful for breaking combos and surviving at higher damage.  Press
the joystick up and toward the platform when you get knocked off and you'll 
be more likely to survive; if you get knocked vertically, press down and
away from your attacker.

- Reverse Aether

Press up B, but press up about 30 degrees in the direction toward's Ike's
back.  Alternatively, press up B but then quickly push the control stick
toward Ike's back.  This is useful when you're facing the wrong way and
want to use Aether.  Although Aether can be aimed slightly backward, it has
notably better horizontal distance when you're looking in the direction that
you want to travel.  There aren't any special powers for the attack that I'm
aware of though.

- Shield-aerial lure (I'm still working on the name)

This technique is best done out of a shield; shorthop backwards and do a
forward aerial against an approaching enemy.  It's useful against people who
like to run up and grab you; often, a slippery opponent won't be hit if you
use a tilt, and will just run in and grab you afterwards.  This is useful to
deter your enemies from grabbing you when you shield, in addition to damaging
them.  Other characters can do this, but the excellent range of Ike's forward
aerial is what makes it work.  It also works well to deal with quick
short-ranged characters, who will torment you given a chance.

- Shorthop

Press jump (or tap up on the joystick) and stop pressing jump before you leave
the ground; you will perform a shorter jump, which is at a good height for
hitting a grounded enemy with an aerial.

- Quick Draw fakeout

When running or jumping  in, charge up a Quick Draw instead of attacking like 
normal; this will give you a chance to hit them if they try to hit you, 
roll/dodge, or Counter, and won't leave you vulnerable like you would normally 
be after attacking.

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*       Section 4: Moves                                                      *
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This section contains info and strategies for each of Ike's moves.  Damage
percentages are the maximum before stale moves negation, which reduces the
damage of a move when it is used repeatedly; using other moves will restore
the damage of the unused moves.  

The KO %s were determined by testing against Ganondorf in the middle of the
Battlefield stage at ground level.  These are not meant to be absolute
numbers, but instead guidelines for the relative power of each move.  Any
attack that KOs by sending your opponent upward will of course work much
better against lighter characters.  Aerials in particular will KO at far lower
%s if you catch your opponent in the air near the edge/ceiling.

There are ratings from 1-5, with 1 being a specialty move that is almost never
used, 3 being a move that has some use in specific situations, and 5 being a
move that should be very commonly used or is uniquely useful in several
situations.  The ratings are relative to the other moves Ike has, so even
though I don't like Ike's up aerial because it is slow without large range, it
gets a 3/5 because he doesn't have anything better to use.

Quick tip: use the fastest move that will work to hit your opponent, unless
you have a strong reason to do otherwise.  Particularly with Ike, whose moves
do similar damage to each other, you're best off hitting as fast as possible.

4.1 -[ Ground A button attacks ]-


Neutral A, A, A combo

Damage: 16% (4+5+7)
Ko: 180%
Rating: 5/5

This is an excellent combo and will punish your enemies who try to fight up
close.  It counterbalances the slow nature of Ike's attacks and is invaluable
in close range fighting.  Remember, fast moves are more dangerous when they
come from a slow character because your opponent expects a slower attack.  If
your enemy is close to you, always use this or possibly a grab; it will pay
off well. I can't stress enough how great this move is; it would be a 6/5 if
I believed in that nonsense.

This combo will also work if you hold A, which is the best way to use it when
you are near an edge.  Otherwise, you may get knocked off, tap A before you
react, and fall to your death due to Ike's weak vertical recovery.
Occasionally, the game will repeat the the punch and kick twice in a row when
holding A, which adds another 9% to the combo.  However, the game might get
caught in a cycle where the punch hits and the kick misses repeatedly; your
opponent can use an attack on you if they're paying attention, so just shield
or hit A, A, A manually to end that problem.

Forward tilt A

Damage: 15%
Ko: 100%
Rating: 3/5

This is basically equivalent to a smash move for light or midweight
characters, and it is about as damaging and fast.  This move does lacks the
broad arc of Ike's forward smash or forward aerial, which limits its
usefulness, but it does have good horizontal range.  This is primarily a way
to KO at higher damage or swat a runner, but is fairly effective at that,
since it is Ike's second most powerful uncharged attack and has good range.
Ike's forward tilt is the first reliable move you can use to KO your opponent,
but it still leaves you vulnerable if spot dodged.

Down tilt A

Damage: 14%
Ko: 150%
Rating: 1/5

This attack is actually a spike; when used on a grounded opponent, it knocks
your opponent straight upwards, useful for comboing with Aether.
Unfortunately, this move is slow, has less range than the forward tilt, and
will miss if your opponent is in the air, so it's hard to find an opportunity
to use it in regular combat.  It's also not the best way to achieve a KO.  If
you are above someone on an incline, you could possibly use this attack, but
that is about it.  Since the attack is a spike, it can be used to edgecamp
enemies, particularly  if they are just hanging off of the edge trying to
avoid combat.  However, most enemies will latch onto the edge and gain the
resulting temporary invulnerability, so this is difficult to pull off when
they are recovering (but it is rewarding). If you hit your opponent near the
hilt of the blade, they will instead go flying forward with knockback similar
to the forward tilt.  This is too difficult to set up in order to be
practical, and the forward tilt does a good job on its own.

Up tilt A

Damage: 9-12% (hitting your opponent after the initial swing does less damage)
Ko: 120% (for hitting your opponent with the initial swing)
Rating: 3/5

This move knocks your opponent upward and combos well with Aether at low
damage.  However, it has limited range (worse than Ike's Neutral A combo) and
thus is mainly a defensive move.  It can be used as a faster (and shorter 
ranged) alternative to the forward tilt at higher damage as a kill move.  
The up tilt is not the best suited for attacking midair opponents,
since this attack does less damage (typically 10%) and knockback at the top of
the swing.    If the opponent is touching you while you're on the ground, the
attack only does 9% damage.  It is quite handy as a faster way to counter a
shorthopped aerial, since many players will expect Ike's powerful and slower
up smash.  This is also a surprisingly good finisher for grounded opponents,
as good as the up smash and faster than any of Ike's other KO moves. This 
move's effectiveness varies tremendously with who you're fighting; it's nearly
worthless except as a KO move against long ranged characters, but it becomes 
quite handy against up close and personal characters, particularly if they use
a lot of aerials.

Forward smash

Damage: 22-30% (17-23% at tip)
Ko: 50% (100% at tip)
Rating: 3/5

Very slow and very powerful, this move symbolizes Ike very well.  This has a
generous arc of attack and can even hit enemies on platforms above you (which
can make it a better alternative to the up smash).  Oddly enough, it does less
damage at the tip, so if you get a chance to aim it (when your opponent is
stunned, for instance), hit them with the middle of the blade.  This move has
the major flaw that your enemies can easily attack you while you're slowly
preparing to attack.  This should be used sparingly, but at medium damages
(40-80%), throwing in an OCCASIONAL forward smash when your enemy is
approaching from a distance will sometimes finish them off nicely.  Usually,
it will fail and you'll take 10-15% damage, but if it hits you'll do the
equivalent of 50-70% damage (which it would take to hurt them more and then KO
them using another faster attack).  Abusing this attack will get you punished
more than another strategy, particularly if your opponent has a Counter,
although there are useful tricks you can use with the forward smash in that
situation... see the Counter section for details.

Down smash

Damage: 13-18% (1st forward hit), 16-22% (2nd backward hit)
Ko: 150% (1st forward hit), 120% (2nd backward hit)
Rating: 2/5

This is your basic two hit downward smash which is actually quite fast, faster
than the forward tilt.  It sends your opponents upward.  This can be followed
up with Aether at low damages, but there is significant downtime from the
second slash, so this won't turn into a full combo.  The downtime will destroy
you if you miss and this is less damaging than most of Ike's tilts, so this is
mainly used to get desparation KOs at high damage or to punish people who roll
into you as opposed to racking up damage.  You should really never "try" to 
hit with the first hit; either be sure to hit with the first hit, or be 
punishing a roll with the second hit.

Up smash

Damage: 17-24%
Ko: 120%
Rating: 4/5

The up smash has a very large range, but is a bit slow. Despite its speed
limitation, it is very useful for hitting opponents on a platform above you or
for swatting enemies who descend from above.  It's a very useful move against
airborne enemies, and can even get a few good KOs in the middle of the stage.
It's generally best to pick either this move or Aether to fight an airborne
enemy, but don't get predictable; mix it up.  Remember that you can use it out
of a run without stopping.

Running attack

Damage: 7%
Ko: >200%
Rating: 1/5

The running attack has a surprisingly long range, because Ike both lunges
forward and uses the reach of his blade. The knockback at the tip is
horizontal, while the knockback close in is vertical; hitting close in makes
some combos possible, but with greater risk to Ike.  In either case, Ike's
running attack has terrible damage and knockback, without having enough speed
to compensate.  There is also lag after the attack, leaving Ike vulnerable.
There are lots of better options, such as a shorthopped aerial, Quick Draw
from greater range, grabbing, or countering, so this attack should rarely, if
ever, be used.  If you are going to use this attack, learn its range (a bit
bigger than a platform on Battlefield) so that you can tap A early and at
least be your sword's distance away.

Ledge attack

Damage: 8% (if Ike's damage is < 100%) or 10% (if Ike's damage is > 100%)
Ko: >200%
Rating: 1/5

These attacks should rarely be used, particularly the slower ledge attack when
Ike's damage is > 100%.  Dropping down and then immediately using Aether will
do a similar amount of damage without risk to Ike (because Ike's sword goes up
without Ike at first).  However, using the fast ledge attack occasionally can
be useful to mix things up.

4.2 -[ Aerial A button attacks ]-


Aerial neutral A (nair)

Damage: 9%
Ko: 180%
Rating: 4/5

This attack has a generous arc of attack all around Ike, starting at the top
of his head.  However, this is Ike's weakest aerial, so you need a good reason
to not use an aerial with a direction.  One possible use for this aerial would
be as a faster attack against an enemy that is above Ike, since Ike's up
aerial is slow.  It has less downtime after landing than Ike's other aerials,
so using it at close range and then following up with a fast attack like the
neutral A combo or an up tilt can pay off well.  In a certain narrow damage
range (around 30-40%), hitting with the top or front of the aerial will let
you follow up with Aether.  If your opponent is at higher damages, this is
mainly a defensive aerial, since it won't KO them.  This aerial has
a lot of specific uses and an aerial with almost no downtime is handy, so it
becomes better than fair if you are getting dodged/shielded a lot.

Aerial forward A (fair)

Damage: 13%
Ko: 130%
Rating: 4/5

The forward aerial attacks with a generous arc in front of Ike, although it
does not attack directly above him.  It is reasonably powerful, but more
importantly has good range and damage.  This move is one of Ike's two best
moves that make Ike, along with the neutral A combo.  Shorthopping a forward
aerial at an enemy is a great way to approach them, particularly if you hit
with the tip, and the superior range often means that you can hit them without
being hit.  If they start shielding all the time, you may have to back off,
but this should otherwise be a frequently used approach or followup.  It is
also a decent finishing move at high damages or when edgecamping at medium
damages.

Aerial back A (bair)

Damage: 14%
Ko: 120%
Rating: 4/5

The back aerial attack comes out very quickly, which will often surprise your
enemies, and attacks behind Ike.  It has good horizontal range, although Ike
does not sweep the blade up or down, and it finishes faster than Ike's other
aerials.  This is a great attack whenever you can use it, but unfortunately it
hits rather high up, so it's hard to shorthop this attack at a short enemy.
This is very much the exception to the rule for Ike's attacks, since it is
both fast and powerful, so this aerial can often take your enemies by surprise.
It's useful for edgecamping and has even more power than the forward aerial,
so it is quite handy; use it whenever you can, except possibly if you think
that Counter would do even more damage.  Although it is less used than some of
Ike's other's attacks, it is dominant when it can be used.

Aerial down A (dair)

Damage: 16%
Ko: 140% (when hitting a standing character)
Rating: 3/5

Ike's down aerial has a short delay, but has good range and is quite useful
for punishing jugglers.  This attack is useful for jumping (not shorthopping,
usually) at an opponent to hurt them, while dodging ground-based projectiles.
It is also one of Ike's more powerful attacks and spikes very well.  Although
this isn't a primary way to damage your opponent, it is a valuable move since
Ike has almost no other way to damage someone below him (Counter tends to miss,
 and Ike's neutral aerial is far from useful).  Oddly, if the attack does not
hit in the initial animation, it does only 12% damage and the opponent gets
knocked upward, so try to hit with the initial swing.

Aerial up A (uair)

Damage: 14%
Ko: 120%
Rating: 3/5

This attack is rather slow to come out; Ike takes his blade and slowly twirls
it over his head.  It is best used by pressing A well before you reach your
target, as soon as you jump off of the ground if you aren't using your second
jump.  
It's not Ike's best aerial because it is so slow; it is basically a smash move
in the air without good range. While the damage and knockback are good, there
are many other up aerials that would be more useful.  This is mainly useful as
a kill move at higher damages, along with the forward tilt, and as an
alternative to using Aether when your opponent is in the air.  Remember that
the listed KO percentage is higher than what is needed, since you'll be using
this attack against an airborne enemy; it's theoretically better than Ike's up
smash for KOing people due to that reason.  If you mainly try to hit airborne
enemies with the neutral aerial, then use this attack instead, they will
generally screw up their air dodges and get hit.

4.3 -[ B button attacks ]-


Eruption (neutral B)

Damage: 10-37%
Ko: 140% (no charge), 40% (full charge)
Rating: 2/5

Ike raises his sword, then plunges it down to release a large plume of flame
which even penetrates down through a platform.  The attack can be charged by
holding B.  While Ike is plunging his sword downward, he is resistant to
knockback, so if he is hit, he will take damage but will still finish the
attack. At a full charge, the attack will automatically release with a 
slightly larger area effect and do 10% damage to Ike.
 
Using this attack can pay off well against people who dash at you
frequently, like Sonic, but it is otherwise rather slow compared to the
benefit.  In close quarters, you will be hit before you gain your knockback
resistance, and the uncharged damage is too small to be worthwhile.  Charging
the attack pretty much tells your foes to run away and shoot you (Look out!
He's gonna blow!), so that's only rarely useful.  The uncharged attack can be
useful for punishing people who are going up or down through a platform; in
fact, Eruption can hit tall characters through the platform on stages like
Battlefield, which will often surprise them and set up for further attacks.
As a high damage KO move, particularly against lightweights who have to be in
close range anyways, it is also reasonable due to its large area effect; in
particular, it is quite handy against Metaknight, Kirby, and Jigglypuff.  This
move is generally overrated by the novice player and should be used sparingly,
if at all.

Quick Draw (side B)

Damage: 9-16%
Ko: >200% (no charge), 130% (full charge)
Rating: 4/5

Ike charges forward toward another character, then rapidly slashes them if they
 are in range.  This attack can be charged by holding B, and the charge can be
held as long as you like (if you don't get hit or die).  There will be a ding
when the attack is fully charged.  If this attack ends in the air, regardless
of whether Ike hits an enemy or not, Ike is left helpless and will plummet to
his death if a platform or edge is not nearby.  This move can be used to
recover.

Although this is one of Ike's weakest attacks, it is very valuable because it
is one of Ike's few fast attacks.  Occasionally using it when charging towards
an opponent can skew their timing and keep them guess.  Mixing up your attacks
between your ordinary attacks, an uncharged Quick Draw, and a charged Quick
Draw can keep them guessing.  Spamming Quick Draw will get you KOed, so use it
to exploit openings or to occasionally surprise your opponent.  Using it high
up in the air is almost always a bad idea.  There is more on Quick Draw in the
Detailed Strategies section (Section 6.1).

Counter (down B)

Damage: 1.2x the attack damage with a minimum of 10%
Ko: varies, knockback equals the knockback of the countered attack with an
unknown minimum knockback
Rating: 2/5

After a brief windup, Ike flashes and will counterattack if attacked (not
grabbed).  There is some ending lag, in which Ike can be attacked, before he
can do anything else.

The value of this move varies based on how well you use it, but it gets a fair
rating because Ike is a big, tempting target and needs a defensive tactic
besides his superior range.  Any time when your opponent would normally attack
you, consider using Counter if you can start it in time.  You can shorthop it
at enemies or wait for them to attack you, but either way it can deter the
speedy enemies who will get up in your face.  There is more on Counter in the
Detailed Strategies section (Section 6.2).

Aether (up B)

Damage: 3-25% (varies based on when attack hits)
Ko: >200%
Rating: 4/5

Ike sends his sword spinning upward, then follows it upward, spins in the air,
and finally plummets rapidly toward the ground.  After Ike tosses his sword
and before he is in the air, he is resistant to knockback and will proceed
with the attack even if hit.  The attack can be aimed while Ike is in the air;
he normally moves forward by the end of the attack, but by pushing the
joystick in a direction, Ike can move slightly backward or further forward.
This is Ike's primary recovery move.

Because Aether starts off with a sword and brings Ike back to the ground by
the end of the attack, it is very useful for hitting airborne targes with
little risk to Ike.  It can also do a tremendous amount of damage,
particularly to large characters.  The attack is also not counterable by an
airborne character unless they are at the very top of the sword's arc, since
the sword precedes Ike, setting off the counter before Ike is in range.  If
you've been reading the rest of the guide, you'll notice that about half of
Ike's attacks combo into Aether; it's hard to go wrong when using this to
attack airborne enemies.  You want to try and hit at the edge of Ike's range
as usual.  However, be wary of attacking grounded enemies with this; if they
are quick, they can roll behind you and hit you with a charged smash.

Great Aether (final smash)

Damage: 64%
Ko: 20%, varies based on height of center of level

Ike instantly slashes for a large distance in front of him, as well as a small
distance above, below, and behind him.  If the hit connects, Ike becomes
invincible and performs a deadly-looking combo on all enemies caught by the
attack, then plummets down to the center of the stage to destroy his foes.  If
the hit misses, Ike uses his colorful slash animation and does no further
damage.
This attack can be dodged, but it is still quite easy to land. Just get within
striking range of your opponent and wait a short time for them to dodge.  If
they dodge, hit them at the end of their dodge; if they don't, then just hit
them.  The only way you should miss is if they randomly choose to dodge after
you get in range but right while you are pressing B.  The best opponents to
hit with this attack are grouped and/or are at the lowest damage at which you
can Ko them.  If you use your final smash to KO someone at 140%, you've turned
your final smash into a tilt attack, so use it wisely.

4.4 -[ Grabs ]-


Ike's throws are often underused, but they are quite important because a
decent opponent will often shield in order to avoid getting attacked or
countered.  Since shields beat attacks and don't set off Counter, you'll have
to grab to keep your opponents guessing.  They can be used while you are
running; if you are crouching, you can also grab by shield-grabbing.

Grab attack

Damage: 3%
Ko: N/A

This is your basic grab attack; use it only when your opponent is fairly
damaged, or they will break out of the grab.

Forward throw

Damage: 6%
Ko: >200%
Rating: 2/5

Ike tosses an enemy forward a short distance.  This throw is too weak to kill
people; it is only useful if you are tossing them off the edge to edgecamp
them.  Otherwise, pick one of the vertical throws.

Back throw

Damage: 6%
Ko: >200%
Rating: 2/5

Ike tosses an enemy backward a short distance.  This throw goes further than
the forward throw, but still is useless as a kill move.  Again, this is for
tossing people off of the edge only; vertical throws are much better for
dealing damage.

Down throw

Damage: 6%
Ko: 200%
Rating: 4/5

Ike tosses an enemy on the ground, which bounces them upward and slightly
forward.  This throw is probably designed to combo with Aether, and it works
quite well, although it will start bouncing the enemy too high around 30-40%
damage.  This is a great throw for racking up damage; a simple Aether followup
will yield around 27% damage total.

Up throw

Damage: 6%
Ko: >200%
Rating: 4/5

Ike tosses an enemy straight upward.  This can be followed by a shorthopped
aerial at low damages or Aether at high damages.  This is Ike's best throw at
higher damages for damaging an opponent; again, a simple Aether followup will
yield around 27% damage total.

4.5 -[ Move listing by KO power ]-


Again, remember these vary by weight of character and horizontal recovery
capability.  Vertical KOs are better than usual against light characters,
while horizontal KOs are better than usual against heavy characters.

40%: Fully charged Eruption
50%: Forward smash (center of blade)
100%: Forward tilt, forward smash (tip of blade)
120%: Up smash, up aerial, up tilt, back aerial, down smash (2nd hit)
130%: Fully charged Quick Draw, forward aerial
140%: Uncharged Eruption, down aerial
150%: Down smash (1st hit), down tilt 
180%: Neutral A combo, neutral aerial
200%: Down throw

*******************************************************************************
*       Section 5: Combos                                                     *
*******************************************************************************


5.1 -[ Combos ]-


Well, Ike doesn't have real combos, since his moves have such
high knockback.  Many of them have about the same knockback, so they are often
interchangeable.  In fact, there's really about four combos that Ike has:


Vertical knockback -> Aether

Moves: nair + landing at 30-40%, dtilt, utilt
       dthrow < 40%, uthrow > 40%

Use this whenever you won't get punished for the Aether.  There are some
alternative followups like full hopped uair or nair, but they are less
damaging.  They're mainly used when your opponent uses directional influence
to dodge the Aether, or when you want to KO with uair.  Uair is particularly
good against air dodgers.

Bonus combo: uthrow/dtilt -> utilt -> Aether at 0%
This depends on your opponent and their weight, but it's quite painful.


Nair + landing -> neutral A combo
At < 20% damage

This is a nice way to get close to your enemy, and if you miss with the nair,
you aren't in trouble as long as you land out of grab range.


Horizontal throw -> Quick Draw

Back/forward throw work equally well for this one, but it's not very damaging.
It's best in 2v2 battles where you can toss an enemy at their teammater, then
try to hit both.  If they air dodge your Quick Draw, don't bother with this.


Horizontal knockback -> spike
Moves: bthrow/fthrow -> dair, 1-2 neutral A hits -> dtilt

These are great if you can pull them off, but your opponent can do a lot to
stop them, mainly jumping or air dodging.  However, they can still be a good
idea even if they don't work most of the time, since early KOs are awesome.
If your opponent likes to jump back after a fthrow/bthrow, you can Aether
instead of spiking; your opponent will get caught in the Aether and you'll
do a weak Aether spike to knock them downwards, while you'll end up hugging
the edge.  There's a lot that can go wrong with this one; if your opponent
gets to the ledge first, hold backward while doing Aether and you won't 
plunge to your death, although they might get a free hit on you.

Fake but useful combo:

Neutral A combo -> Aether
At 0-30% damage

This isn't actually a combo, but enough characters will second jump back
towards you that it's worth knowing.  When they second jump back, they will
be at the perfect angle and height for Aether, so you can punish them for it.

*******************************************************************************
*       Section 6: Detailed Strategies                                        *
*******************************************************************************


6.1 -[ Quick Draw ]-


Quick Draw is one of Ike's most valuable moves for keeping his opponent off
balance.  This section has several tricks for use with Quick Draw, as well as
some advice for when to avoid using Quick Draw.

- Attacking an opening

Smashes, some special moves, some aerials, and some tilts have downtime,
leaving the other character open to an attack.  Rolls also leave the roller
vulnerable at the end of the roll.  Quick Draw is Ike's fastest way to hit
someone who has just attacked.  This is the main use of Quick Draw,
since it is fast but has some nasty downtime itself.  You can charge Quick
Draw as much as you like, depending on how long your enemy is vulnerable.
In fact, this is a great counter to an enemy who likes to charge smashes.
However, do not use Quick Draw if the enemy is close; a tilt will do more 
damage and/or set up for a combo.

- Canceling or beating other attacks

Some attacks can be beaten by Quick Draw, like the Falcon Kick; others will
be canceled, like Sonic's Spin Dash (well, at least one of them).  If you beat
them, great; if not, that's usually fine too.  You'll be next to your opponent,
so quickly use the Neutral A combo (or maybe a grab), and you'll generally
still do some damage.  In fact, it's a good habit to start tapping A any time
it appears your Quick Draw will hit (or come close to hitting) your opponent.
Be warned that some neutral A combos are faster than yours, like Sonic's, so
you may still get hit by a jab. Know your opponent; if they don't jab, great;
if they do jab, pick another more to respond with.

- Hitting a runner

Well, hit a runner with Quick Draw sometimes.  This works particularly well if
you have a hard time predicting your enemy's approach.  Don't do it too often
or they'll catch on and start shielding randomly, then smashing you during
Quick Draw's large downtime.

- Breaking a stalemate

Against an enemy who doesn't have a horizontal projectile, charging a Quick
Draw will force your enemy to jump or watch their shield wither away.  This is
useful when your opponent has been playing defensively and winning.  There's
also the off chance that they do something stupid and actually let you hit
them, which is an added bonus.

- Moving around the platform quickly

Quick Draw only has large downtime if you hit an enemy; if you miss, it is no
worse than walking around, since you can do any attack you like almost
immediately.  In fact, if you miss but end up very close to your enemy, you
can follow up with a neutral A combo or a grab -> Aether combo for better
damage.  This can be useful even if your enemy isn't on the ground.  You can
use Quick Draw to get under them, then immediately use Aether, Reverse Aether,
or jump and use an up aerial to hit them.  The speed of Quick Draw, compared
to Ike's sluggish running, will often surprise your enemies.  I'd strongly 
recommend using Quick Draw to move around, even when it isn't necessary, so
you can get used to the distance that it travels.

- Quick Draw fakeout

This is fairly simple; go through your normal attack pattern, except when you
would normally attack your enemy (in midair or on the ground), charge a Quick
Draw instead.  Obviously, this only works when you are outside of your
opponents attack range and when you won't get blasted by a projectile, unless
you're expecting your opponent to roll, sidestep, or Counter.  This is very
handy because you can exploit the lag after your opponent's attack and damage 
them with a partially or fully charged Quick Draw.  Even if your opponent does
not attack and jumps away, you still do not lose, since you can choose when to
relase the Quick Draw so you don't charge right into an enemy aerial.  If you
miss with the Quick Draw, you can still jump up and hit your enemy with a back
aerial, up aerial, or Reverse Aether.  This will also confuse your opponent
and make your regular attacks more effective; when they jump to avoid your
Quick Draw fakeout, sometimes they will get hit by your shorthopped forward
aerial instead.

- When not to use

Don't use Quick Draw against opponents with low damage; because of the large
lag, you can easily hit them and still get hit back.

Don't use Quick Draw randomly, as a routine approach, or just because you feel
like it. Quick Draw is a low upside, high downside attack because it deals low
damage but has a large downtime; if your enemy sees it coming, you will be
punished by your opponent shielding or air dodging, then smashing or comboing
you.

Don't use Quick Draw when you could hit your opponent with a more damaging
attack.  Every bit of damage can count, so don't waste a good opportunity.

Don't use Quick Draw when it could take you off of the edge; even if you are
quite confident it will hit, a small chance of self-destructing is a major
problem.

Don't use Quick Draw when you will get swallowed; it is humiliating and
ineffective.  There is also an odd effect on the edge of platforms in
particular, where Ike will be dragged off the platform and falls to his death
when he uses a fully charged Quick Draw on an enemy using Swallow.

6.2 -[ Counter ]-


There are two categories of Counters; reactive and preemptive.

- Reactive counters

After seeing someone attack, counter it with the right timing.  This works
against slow attacks like G-dorf's Warlock Punch, although most opponents
learn not to use those on you.

Certain attacks can not be countered; here is a list of these attacks.
Respond with your sword if you can predict them well in advance, and air dodge
or sidestep otherwise.

Attacks that count as grabs:

Bowser's Flying Slam (side B)
Captain Falcon's Falcon Dive (up B)
Diddy Kong's Monkey Flip (side B)
Ganondorf's Dark Dive (up B)
Ganondorf's Flame Choke (side B)
King Dedede's Swallow (neutral B)
Kirby's Swallow (neutral B)
Lucario's Force Palm (side B)
Wario's Bite (neutral B)
Yoshi's Egg Lay (neutral B)

- Preemptive counters

This is what most of your counters are; you are guessing your opponent will
attack and Countering before you see them attack.  This is mostly what you
will be using, since Ike's Counter is slow. Keep in mind:

1. Will your opponent attack?
2. Will you do better by attacking, shield-grabbing or sidestepping?


6.3 -[ Approaches ]-


Ike has a lot of approaches, which is good because you'll be chasing
after your opponent most of the time.  Be sure to pick different approaches,
particularly if one isn't working.  The main way to approach is:

- Shorthop and use a forward aerial

This is a good default approach, and you can even use it against shielding if
your opponent doesn't have a good ranged grab.  Ike's forward
aerial has excellent range, good damage, and will slice through many
projectiles.  Since you'll often be approaching through the air anyways to
avoid projectiles, this is a very natural approach.  The downside is the
forward aerial has some lag time, so if you miss, you will be in front of your
enemy; hitting with the tip of your forward aerial will help a LOT in keeping
you safe, but you'll need other options too.

- Jump and use a down aerial

This can avoid almost all projectiles, and it can still hit all characters if
you time the aerial correctly.  It also does the best damage of any single 
approach, and sets up well for combos due to the upwards knockback.  However, 
it is generally a bit slower than the shorthopped forward aerial.  Ike is also
in the worst position when attacking, since he is in the air above the enemy;
this position is generally a bad idea.  This is a nice alternative when used
rarely, but it is too risky to be a main option.  It's best against the tall
characters of course.

- Shorthop and use Counter

If your enemy likes to smash you or hit you with a projectile when you
approach, jumping and using Counter will punish your enemy severely, if you
time it well.  A Countered smash can do more damage than even Ike's down
aerial and may even KO your opponent.  This does leave Ike vulnerable for a
time, so it is best used as an alternative, rather than a routine attack.  

- Use a running attack

Ike's running attack has good range, particularly if you time it right.  But,
it has bad damage and still has a little downtime at the end of the attack.
This is generally a bad option, but it is a little less risky than the other
attacking options.  It should be used somewhere between rarely and never,
depending on how good your opponent is at stopping your other approaches.

- Use an uncharged Quick Draw

Ike's fastest approach seems useful, but should rarely or never be used,
except when your enemy attacks and leaves an opening, due to the high risk of
using Quick Draw predictably.  Pick a different set of approaches and use
them.  The only exception is if your enemy is using an antiair projectile; in
that case, you'll have to approach through the ground, and Quick Draw is the
fastest way to hit them while they are still attacking.

- Use a Quick Draw fakeout

This is covered in the Quick Draw section, but using this from time to time
will help to make your other attacks more dangerous.  It won't work against
enemies with projectiles that can hit you from range, but it can work if their
projectiles are slow to come out (such as Zelda), since Ike can hit them 
before they release the projectile.  It's particularly potent for an opponent
at 140% or so damage, since a fully charged Quick Draw can KO them if they roll
or sidestep, if you get the timing correct.

- Run and shield-grab

To stop enemies who frequently shield or Counter, a running shield-grab can
put them in their place.  The damage for this varies greatly on whether you
can pull off a grab -> Aether combo; it can be Ike's worst or best approach in
terms of damage.  Ike is rather slow, so this is yet another alternative,
rather than a routine option.

- Roll behind your opponent

Sometimes you can't predict your enemy's timing; rolling behind them can let
you exploit them when they stand still to attack.  It works best against
characters like Ike, who stand still to attack, as opposed to characters like
Wolf, who move forward with their forward smash.  Your enemy can counter this
with a down smash; if they routinely use this when you approach, you're far
better off Countering or using an aerial.  Otherwise, this is another chance
to mix up your play.

6.4 -[ Defending ]-


These strategies are for enemies who are charging you; this doesn't happen as
much, but it's worth thinking about.

When your opponent is charging you:

If you're on the ground, you can either brace for the attack with Counter or
by shielding, stand there and counterattack, or charge out and counterattack.
Using Counter or shielding is useful as a change of pace, but your faster
opponents will frequently grab you simply because you can Counter (or because
fast characters like grabs), so this shouldn't be your primary option.
Counter is generally better than shielding, unless you feel you can pull off a
vertical grab -> Aether combo.  Grabs are often difficult against speedy foes
as well.

A standing counterattack is best done with a tilt, usually the forward tilt,
or the occasional forward smash (at 50-80% when it would actually kill your
enemy).  The up tilt is useful against shorthopped aerials.  Eruption can also
be a decent option if you expect your opponent may instead attack from the
air.  This is often your best bet, since if your attacks come out at the same
time you are guaranteed not to get hit.  However, an enemy can exploit this by
charging in, shielding or standing still, and then dashing in to smack you
around.  The timing for this can also be awkward, since fast characters can
easily surprise you.Charging out should only be done with Quick Draw, but this
can be quite effective, since Quick Draw will at least neutralize and often
override other fast attacks.  It also works if the other person hasn't
attacked yet, obviously.  However, your opponent can fake you out by shielding
or, to a lesser extent, jumping, so this isn't a reliable response either.

There is no single correct answer here, but you should select from these three
main options and change them up randomly.  If you can usually get all three
options to work, usually pick the option that does the most damage, but don't
do it all of the time.  This will confuse your opponent and also keep them
from trying to stop your favorite strategy.

If you're in the air, you have very limited options.  Against an opponent
attacking from the side, you can use the forward or back aerial, Counter, or
just air dodge and hope for better times.  Particularly if you are facing away
from your enemy, it isn't a big deal to be attacked from the side.  If your
enemy is trying to juggle you however, Ike only has one attack of value: his
down aerial.  This is slow to come out, so Ike is easily juggled.  The best
option is often to try to move off to one side, so Ike can actually hit them
with Counter.  Counter won't hit an enemy directly below you, so it is
generally a waste against a good juggler.  The other option is to air dodge,
but this is less effective against fast characters since they can often smack
you with an aerial after you dodge.

6.5 -[ Recovering ]-


Ike has two recovery options: Aether and Quick Draw.  Of the two options,
Aether is much more reliable than Quick Draw, but Quick Draw has greater
recovery potential if Ike needs large horizontal recovery.  They cannot be
combined, since Quick Draw will leave Ike helpless and unable to attack after
it is used and Aether will make Ike plummet to his death.  As a general rule,
use Quick Draw only if Aether won't work, which can be figured out from
experience and how far away you are from the platform.

- Aether Recovery	[AET]

When you are knocked out from the platform, immediately hold the joystick
toward the platform and keep it there.  Use your double jump, if you have it,
to move toward the platform.  Using midair attacks and Counter are fine,
provided that you will recover from the downtime in time to use Aether.  If
someone jumps out, odds are that they are trying to knock you outward and/or
spike you.  Counter will deal with this problem, provided you use it in time.
Spikes typically have a delay compared to regular aerials, so know the attack
your enemy will use.  The forward aerial can also work to keep your enemy away,
but be sure to hit them at the maximum range or you might get hit anyways.  If
they can spike you, odds are that you could use Quick Draw to recover, so you
should also consider that if you have trouble predicting your enemy's timing.
For maximum recovery power, use Aether when the top of your spinning sword is
level with the top of the platform and the far side of your sword is almost,
but not quite touching the platform.  Hold the joystick toward the platform
after you start the Aether, and you will move toward the stage while you are
spinning in the air.  You will latch onto the edge and be temporarily
invincible.  Sometimes, your opponent will try to edgehog you; if that
happens, try to Quick Draw past them or, at the proper range, use Aether and
hold the joystick toward the platform so you land on it, rather than the edge.
If you do get spiked, try to use Aether repeatedly; you're basically
guaranteed to die, but if you can hit your enemy with Aether, the end of the
attack is a weak downward spike that may take them with you.  The same applies
if they hit you, but do try to accurately hit them with Aether rather than
just spamming it.  Spite is always a good reason to KO an enemy.

- Quick Draw Recovery	[QUI]

When you are knocked out from the platform, immediately hold the joystick
toward the platform and keep it there.  Use your double jump, if you have it,
to move toward the platform.  Then simply charge Quick Draw.  If you are not
attacked by projectiles and no one gets in your way in the air or on the edge,
release it when the top of Ike is just below the top of the platform, and you
will hopefully latch onto the edge and be temporarily invincible.  However, a
Quick Draw recovery can easily be ruined if someone is in front of Ike.  If
someone jumps out, you may need to use Quick Draw early to sail over their
heads; this is normally a bad idea, since you will be knocked back out if
someone stays on the platform, but it is better than certain death.  However,
if you realize for some reason that you will not be able to recover with Quick
Draw, feel free to hit your opponent out of spite if possible.

- Hanging from the Edge	[HAN]

When you are hanging from the edge, you can hit L or R to roll onto the stage,
push the joystick toward the platform to climb on with no attack, press up or
jump to jump up from the edge, press A to ledge attack, or press down to fall
down off of the edge. If an enemy is close to the edge, you can tap down and
then immediately use Aether to safely hit them; if they are damaged by the
combo, you can move in toward the platform while spinning and land on the
platform, then follow up the attack like a standard Aether.  If they stay
fairly close, then don't move and just let the attack bring you back down to
the edge, then drop down again and use Aether again.  Eventually, they will
decide to back off and stand farther away.  Don't get too happy; wait for a
little and see if they charge a smash; if they do, don't roll if it's a down
smash and don't get up normally if it's a forward smash.  Your opponent will
probably try to forward smash you, so jumping up from the edge or rolling will
generally avoid this attack.  Rolling is riskier, but puts you in a great
position with your opponent between you and the edge.  Watch out for enemies
who use a down smash however; you should just climb up normally then, by 
pressing the joystick toward the platform.  Jumping leaves Ike high in the
air, which is generally a bad idea, but avoids almost all attacks.  Don't form
habits here; mix up your choices here and don't pick the options that will get
you hit against your opponents habitual attacks.  Whatever the outcome, do try
to return the favor and knock your opponent off so you can try out some
edgecamping.

6.6 -[ Edgecamping ]-


- Why edgecamp? [WHY]

Simply put, edgecamping is nearly the only way you can consistently beat an 
xcellent player.  Ike has a lower ceiling than most other characters for
dealing combo damage because his fast attacks do not combo and his tilts have
significant downtime and are slow to come out.  Some fast characters can
devise complicated schemes (or just juggle you) to take you from 0 to 50%
starting with a down tilt; Ike is simply too slow to deal with that.  Ike's
attacks are balanced against a player with few or no combos, but when an enemy
can use their faster tilts (or grabs) to do more total damage than Ike's
equivalent attack, they gain a major advantage.  Your enemy also has many ways
on the stage to dodge your powerful long-ranged attacks.

All of these problems are turned on their head when your enemy is recovering.
They have no combos, and your opponent is just worried about attacks in
general.  Ike's superior knockback is what counts, and his excellent range and
his sword use allow him to trump enemy attacks.  Your opponent also must
behave much more predictably in getting back to the stage, or they will simply
fall to their deaths.

Some people feel that edgecamping is cheap; in a friendly game where your
opponents don't know many combos, you should be able to beat them on the stage
alone.  If you can't, then there are some flaws in your game that you need to
fix.  Therefore, you may choose to not edgecamp to be nice and work on your
stage game.  However, against enemies who chain throw or know lots of combos,
edgecamping is vital and entirely fair.

- General Tips [TIP]

Ike has a natural advantage in edgecamping due to his fast long-ranged back
aerial and his powerful long-ranged down aerial.  However, his attacks all
have significant downtime and Ike himself is a weak jumper, so it takes some
skill to edgecamp well.  Here are some quick tips for edgecamping.

1. Jump off and use only one attack.

Almost no good enemy will fall prey to Ike's forward smash near the edge, even
though it would likely be a KO.  THerefore, it is better to take the fight to
the enemy.  Unfortunately, Ike will generally die if he uses multiple attacks
off of the edge; even one poorly timed attack can kill him due to the lag from
his attacks.  Thus, you have to make your attack count.

2. The down aerial spike is preferable at low damages.

Ike's spike is fairly powerful and can kill some opponents at 0% damage; this
is the equivalent of doing 120% damage or so with a single attack, which is
better than your forward smash or final smash.  The back aerial generally
won't kill people right away; if it does, they aren't at low damages.
However, using the back aerial does give you a chance to hit them again when
they come back, so don't pass up on a sure back aerial for an unlikely spike
opportunity.

3. Edgehog tether users.

Only one person can be on the edge, so Ivysaur, Olimar, and Zero Suit Samus
will fall to their death if they can't knock you off or recover with their
second jump.  Short hop off and grab the edge to edgehog them.  If they can
recover with their second jump, hit them with an aerial first and then edgehog
them.

4. Get back on the platform quickly.

If your attack succeeds, you can get back up and jump out to attack them
again, if need be.  If your attack fails, your opponent will generally recover
with their up B attack; if you're quick, you can hit them with Aether while
they are recovering.  Even if they get back on with no damage, it's better to
use Aether early; if they try to edgehog you, you'll need all the Aether
height you can get.

- Detailed Strategy [DET]

Ike has several edgecamping techniques, which are:

1. Stay near the edge and use a forward smash (or rarely, a forward tilt).

This technique shouldn't be used by default; it should only be used when your
opponent shows that they are vulnerable to it by not going for the edge.  They
don't necessarily have to be bad players for this to work; Bowser and Donkey
Kong may get tired of you spiking them and use their recovery earlier than
normal.  The upside of this technique is almost always a KO due to Ike's 
forward smash, but it is too predictable to use as a normal technique.

2. Stay near the edge and use a down tilt.

The down tilt will spike your opponents fairly well, but most opponents will
go straight for the edge, gain the temporary invincibility, and get off of the
edge quickly. This can work against enemies who are just staying on the edge
for a while to stall the game or hope you will make a mistake.  A few
characters like Sonic do not grab the edge when they pass it; a well timed
down tilt can stop them in their tracks.  Against other characters, if you
stand way out on the edge, you may be able to stop some poorly aimed up B
recoveries, but a forward smash or tilt will generally be better due to the
superior range.

3. Stay somewhat near the edge and hit your opponent after they use their up B.

This is best against characters against King Dedede and Sonic who won't grab
the edge with their up B.  Sometimes, its better to see where your opponent is
going and then react, particularly if they have a lot of range like Dedede or
Zelda.  Try to KO them if you can, but even a little bit of damage helps.  If
your opponent grabs the edge, this is fairly worthless.

4. Stand on the edge and use Aether facing away from the platform.

As crazy as this sounds, if you do an Aether facing outward from the platform
(do NOT use the joystick to move further outward), you will damage your
opponent and send them falling downward while grabbing the edge to save
yourself and possibly edgehog.  Obviously, if you move too far out, you'll die
instead, but this technique can be quite useful against a recovering enemy
who is very high up in the air.  Otherwise, an aerial or possibly a forward
smash is a better bet.

5. Jump or shorthop off and use a down aerial.

This is Ike's best option, if he can pull it off, since it will frequently
kill your opponent outright even at low damages (characters like ROB are an
exception).  It is excellent against Bowser and Donkey Kong and still good
against many other characters.  This doesn't have to work often to be
effective; if your opponent smacks you for 13% most of the time and you KO
them for the equivalent of up to 120% occasionally, it's still a good plan.
Your opponent may also make mistakes to avoid being spiked, allowing you to
edgecamp them a different way in the future.  Even though this takes lots of
practice, since Ike's down aerial is not instant, it is easily worth the
effort to learn.

6. Jump or shorthop off and use a back aerial.

A lot of the time, your opponent will be too high up for a down aerial, so use
a back aerial.  This is the easiest aerial to use, since it is fast; hit your
enemy while using as much of your range as possible.  You generally won't
start out facing away from the platform, so roll towards the edge (or turn
around if you are already there) before jumping out.  Your opponent really
can't do much about this attack other than air dodge (or Counter, if they
have it), so it is a low risk manuever.

7. Jump or shorthop off and use a forward aerial.

Well, sometimes you are facing the platform and don't have time to turn
around; use a forward aerial instead.  The forward aerial is often better than
the back aerial if your opponent is relatively low because it is easier to hit
with the forward aerial due to its generous arc. You're generally better off
being skilled with the back aerial due to its speed and power, but hitting
your opponent is the most important thing.  The forward aerial can be also
better if you have a hard time predicting your enemy's movements.

8. Jump or shorthop off and use Counter.

This is good against enemies who can or want to use their up B attacks a lot
to recover, with a few exceptions for tethers, grabs, and teleports.  It is
generally a bad idea against aerials; even if it will frequently work, you're
on the wrong end of the spike game, so use Counter from a safe distance.

9. Jump or shorthop off, then jump back.

Obviously, this does nothing on its own; its meant to fake your opponent into
using their up B early, so you can smack them with an attack (forward smash,
down tilt, or forward tilt).  This is useful against enemies who are used to
you jumping out and hitting them.  Don't try this against enemies who will
recover anyways, like Fox with his side B, or against enemies who will ignore
you, like Ike with Aether.

10. Edgehog.

Jump off and hang off of the edge.  It's great against certain opponents and
nearly worthless against some others; see anti-character strategies for
details.  The key time to edgehog almost any character is when both you and an
opponent are recovering; if you get there first, you'll be temporarily 
invulnerable, so just hang out and force your enemy to recover to the
platform.  You can then press down and quickly use Aether to punish them.

- Improving your edgecamping skills [IMP]

Obviously, you need to practice.  Practicing on computers helps a little, but
the best experience comes from practicing on humans.  The key thing is to keep
trying edgecamping, even though it will usually fail and sometimes kill you at
first.  The payoff is definitely worthwhile in the long run, so don't get
discouraged.  You may notice your enemies altering their recovery tactics due
to your edgecamping; note what they do and figure out how you can deal with it
(Should you stay on the edge and attack from there? Should you attack later?
Will they mess up if you shorthop out and then hop back without attacking?).
It's always an evolving struggle, but it will be very helpful if you're careful.

6.7 -[ KOing fast enemies ]-


Occasionally, you'll run into an enemy that will drive you crazy by bouncing
around with projectiles, shield grabs, and dodges when they are at high
damage; since Ike's three best kill moves (forward smash, forward tilt, and up
smash) are all slow, they will often keep you at bay while sneaking in some
attacks.  To beat this, keep in mind that your enemy only has a few ways to
dodge in close range; they can roll away, sidestep/air dodge, roll toward you,
or jump.  If they frequently roll away, charge a Quick Draw when you would
normally attack, and hit them at the end of their roll.  If they like to
sidestep, a delayed forward tilt or even the overkill forward smash can work
well to throw off their timing.  If they roll towards you, a down smash will
work well, particularly if you hit them with the backward hit, which is a 
fairly good attack.  If they take to the air, a forward aerial will sometimes
work, but a back aerial is the best way to defeat your enemy.  You can also
just try to get them off the edge and use the standard edgecamping techniques;
spiking someone at 100% isn't as fun as spiking them at 20%, but it's still a
KO.

*******************************************************************************
*       Section 7: Anti-Character Strategies                                  *
*******************************************************************************


Characters are discussed in alphabetical order by their parent character.
Difficulty ratings are not included, since they are generally tainted by a
small sample size and by certain bad players who spam one or two moves.  Your
opponent will determine how tough the fight is anyways.  Any guesses about
another character's strategy are based mostly on WiFi play.

KO moves are shown with their KO percents against Ike from the middle of Final
Destination. The KO percents are determined by hitting an AI Ike on the ground,
so vertical KOing aerials, in particular, may end your life earlier.

Juggling has four ratings: good, okay, bad, and never.  Good means you should
try to juggle them more than half the time, while bad means you should only 
try to juggle them when they wouldn't expect it.  Never means that you should
stick to Aether or the ground, unless you're going for a RARE surprise KO with
uair.  Although Aether will often outdamage Ike's aerials, hitting an
opponent with an aerial lets you hit them again or Aether, so it's useful to
sneak in aerials when you can.


As a general rule, if you can trade hits as Ike, this is almost always a good
idea, particularly against lightweights.  However, this is even true against
heavyweights, with one glaring exception.

Bowser 			[BOW]


Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash (2nd hit) 90%, Bair 120%, Fair 150%
Vertical KO moves: Dsmash 110%, Usmash 110%, Uair 110%, Utilt 130%, up B 150%

Fighting Bowser is different from other characters because if you just sit
there trading hits with Bowser, you will lose.  He is the heaviest character
in the game, has a very damaging forward smash, and has a very punishing grab
(the side B Flying Slam).  Bowser will often try to use Flying Slam to suicide
off of the edge when he is more damaged than you are; hold your joystick
toward the platform after you are grabbed and you should survive; do the
opposite if you are more damaged than he is.  Counter is of less use than
normal because Bowser can perform a midair Flying Slam, which will pierce
through your Counter and do 18% damage to you, so use Counter almost never.
mainly to deal with Bowser Bomb (down B) and Whirling Fortress (up B).  
The key against Bowser is to use your range with the forward aerial, forward 
smash, and forward tilt in order to keep him at bay, like fighting a beast.  
If at all possible, using a vertial tilt or Eruption to get him in the air 
will also pay off.  Charging Quick Draw should generally be avoided if Bowser
is in the air, since he can use his flame breath to block the attack and hurt
you.  Quick Draw should only be used to exploit openings, not as a normal 
attack or approach.  If you can keep Bowser at range or above you, Ike has a
good chance of winning. Otherwise, you'll just have to use the neutral A 
combo (or a grab -> Aether combo) to get him out of your face.  Don't get 
sucked into an air battle, since Bowser's excellent air options (a fast 
forward aerial and Flying Slam) will generally destroy you; using your back 
aerial is an exception, or keeping your distance.  

Juggling: Okay
Aether does a large amount of damage to Bowser, and even his fast
falling Bowser Bomb will be stopped by a flying sword.  Juggling with uair or
nair is actually a decent tactic against Bowser, due to his laggy dair and
poor range below him, but it's even better to jump up and Bowser Bomb-bait,
which you can Counter.  Uair will also hit Bowser even through the
Bowser Bomb, although Ike will still get hurt.
Bowser can juggle Ike with utilt; his uair is too slow and can always be 
stopped by a dair if you see it coming, but will often KO you if you mess 
up the timing.

Edgecamping:
Bowser's Whirling Fortress can be intercepted with dair (best), bair, or fair
fairly easily, so do try to knock him off of the edge.  Bowser may  try to 
smack you with a forward aerial if you return from up high; try to punish him
with a forward aerial if that happens, but remember that his fair is very fast
and has some range.

Final Smash

Bowser transforms into Giga Bowser, the giant version of himself that does not
flinch and does much more damage.  The best option is to avoid him by running 
away, rolling away, and/or jumping.  If you have to stand and fight, Counter
is your friend, as Bowser tends to be very direct and attack much more when he
is a giant.  Aether can also be useful, since it will usually do full damage
and you won't flinch for a short time after you throw your sword.

Captain Falcon 		[CAP]


Captain Falcon is a nice fast runner, but his attacks generally aren't too
fast.  Quick Draw will pierce through his Raptor Boost (side B) and Falcon 
Kick (down B) to
damage him, so it is quite useful in this fight to counter those moves and
occasionally smack him when he approaches you.  You can Counter those moves
too, but they can come at you fast, so Quick Draw is generally a better
response.  Counter is quite effective against him, particularly if he likes to
smash. Avoid the air due to his very powerful forward aerial and quick
attacks, except to land your back aerial, and use Counter and your superior
range if you have to fight him while airborne.  Captain Falcon will often
try to sit back, dodge/shield your attack, and then use his superior speed to
exploit the lag after your attacks.  This behavior is quite annoying, so
charging a Quick Draw will force him to jump and actually fight you; hitting
him with the charged Quick Draw probably won't happen, but is a nice potential
bonus.  Fighting Falcon up close on the ground is generally fine, due to your
superior A, A, A combo, and can be simpler if you have a hard time dealing
with his running speed.

Juggling: Bad
Falcon has a damaging dair spike with decent range below him; you can hit him
safely with a rising uair or hitting him from the side, but it's really not
worth the trouble, especially since he can just Falcon Kick you if you try 
any of that.  It's not hopeless, but Aether or usmash are better almost all of
the time.
The down aerial will stop his Falcon Dive (up B) if you get it out in time, 
but the timing can be difficult. The Falcon Dive will of course pierce through
Counter, but you shouldn't be countering enemies who are directly below you 
anyways.  Falcon can also just uair you with similar results; air dodge is
fine against either move if you have trouble predicting him.

Edgecamping:
Edgecamping with the down aerial if he is low or a horizontal aerial if he is 
at platform level can work decently well.  Falcon can suicide KO you with
side B, so don't miss... unless you're more damaged.  Falcon can fair you to
death if you are off the ledge; try to air dodge this, and be aware of the 
attack well in advance, since it is fast.

Final Smash

Captain Falcon brings in his racer in front of him, then viciously runs over
anyone caught by the initial hit, resulting in instant KOs.  This move is best
air dodged or rolled away from, like all short range final smashes.

Diddy Kong 		[DID]


Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 130%, Dsmash 130%, Fair 150%, Bair 170%
Vertical KO moves: Uair 180%

Monkey Flip (side B) is a nasty move that can turn into either a grab or an
attack; it's best to counter this with a forward tilt, as you'll tie with the
attack and beat the grab.  Diddy will often sprinkle banana peels in your path;
obviously, don't try to Quick Draw over a banana peel and feel free to throw
them at him.  The uncharged Peanut Popgun is more of an antiair projectile
than an antiground projectile, so try to approach through the ground and avoid
shorthopping aerials from a distance.  Quick Draw, charged or uncharged, will
often work as an approach if there are no banana peels in your path.  The 
running attack can be a decent option, since it will cancel or beat Monkey 
Flip, if Diddy feels like counterattacking, and Diddy has rather short range,
making it harder for him to punish a miss.  Running attack can also pick up
bananas if you press A right when you're about to touch the peel.  Too late or
too early, and you trip and eat an attack.  When used right, it does a lot to
negate Diddy's major advantage in limiting your options.
As usual, avoid short range air combat against this quick character, 
particularly since Diddy can grab you in midair,  and use bair or defensive
fairs if you must fight in midair.  Diddy's throws are reasonably damaging
and set up for further attacks, so spot dodging can often be better than
shielding.
Diddy can't really KO upward, so stay in the middle of the platform if you
get fairly damaged.  You'll still have to chase him a bit, but keep him
between you and the edge.  Don't run over bananas if you want to live.

Juggling: Good
Diddy has a slow dair spike with almost no range and doesn't have a 
fastfalling aerial attack, so juggle away.
Diddy can juggle you fairly easily due to his good jumping and fast uair with
low knockback; bair will help to keep him off of you.

Edgecamping:
Edgecamping is dangerous against Diddy, since he can use Monkey Flip to spike
you if he catches you horizontally.  It's best to stay away unless Diddy must
use Rocketbarrel Boost to recover, in which case you can use dair, fair,
or Counter to defend as you choose.  You can occasionally hit him from the 
platform with ftilt or dtilt if he's recovering at an angle, since Rocketbarrel
Boost is hard to aim.
Diddy can spike you with his dair, so you may need to air dodge.

Final Smash

Diddy jumps into the air and blasts peanuts, which pierce shields and
Counter.  The remains from the peanuts can be eaten to regain health.  Hide
well under a platform if possible.  If that isn't possible, roll or air dodge
in the direction his guns used to be pointing once his guns are pointed at
you. For example, if he is bombarding the platform from left to right, roll or
air dodge to the left once his guns are aimed at you.
 	
Donkey Kong 		[DON] 	


Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 80%, Bair 130%
Vertical KO moves: Usmash 90%, Dsmash 110%, Utilt (close to DK) 130%,
Uair 140%

Donkey Kong is rather similar to you as a melee character with good range,
except with a powerful charged punch and no Counter.  He does have faster
tilts that do less damage than your attacks, but your sword beats his attacks.
If Donkey Kong is overly aggressive, shorthopping backward and fairing him will
typically work, so most Donkey Kongs will play defensive.  You'll have to 
attack Donkey Kong in order to keep him from charging up his punch (neutral B).
If he does have a fully charged punch, be very  careful about using the forward
smash or other attacks with large downtime; roll around more than you normally 
would and try to make him miss.  Counter is useful in this fight due to Donkey 
Kong's good range and power.  Approaching Donkey Kong is generally better from 
the air due to his Ground Pound (down B), which has excellent range; a 
shorthopped fair, nair, or Counter will generally work quite well.  
Fighting Donkey Kong in the air can be effective well; his Headbutt (side B) 
and forward aerial have a significant delay before they land, and all his 
aerials are outranged by Ike.  Counter is also an  excellent option in midair 
due to that delay.  However, DK's bair is very fast and has almost no downtime 
with decent range, so you don't particularly want to go toe to toe with that...
except with your bair, which trumps pretty much everything.  An oddity of DK
is that he can be more threatening with his back to you; besides his good bair,
his utilt hits far behind him and combos with itself at low %s, or sets up for
an uair/bair at higher %s.  On the ground, fighting  at range is not nearly as 
useful as normal, due to Donkey Kong's excellent  range; getting in close for 
a vertical grab -> Aether or a neutral A combo  will often pay off well.  Quick
Draw is useful to exploit mistakes, but  charging it won't work against a good 
grounded Donkey Kong, who will spam  Ground Pound (down B) until you charge and
get hit.  Again, DK is well-protected against opponents behind him with his 
bair, utilt, and excellent + fast dsmash, so don't consider yourself safe 
unless you've got range as well.
Donkey Kong can KO with his fsmash very early or his dsmash/usmash very 
quickly, and his uair/bair can cause some later KOs as well.  Be leery of
using fair/ftilt against a DK who can spot dodge at higher %s; spot dodge to
fsmash can destroy you very quickly.


Juggling: Good
DK has a slow dair spike with low range and is a big target, so juggling is
handy... but Aether is too, so you're spoiled for choice here.  The trick
is getting him into the air, which is tough due to his range; countering a
predicted bair with utilt is one useful trick.
DK can juggle you with uair, which has good upward range and is fast but
loses to your dair. The timing is tricky however, so don't expect to
consistently win.  A bigger problem is his utilt, which has almost usmash-
worthy range above and behind him.  This move can juggle you quite easily,
so you really need your full range or the neutral A combo.

Edgecamping:
Donkey Kong can be spiked with the down aerial or hit with the back aerial
when recovering fairly easily, so knocking him off of the edge can lead to
some early KOs.  A good Donkey Kong player will be fairly talented at spiking,
so try to Counter (or intercept with the forward aerial) accordingly when you
recover from high up.  He can also bair you if you come in too high.

Final Smash

Donkey Kong knocks out a wicked beat on his bongo drums.  Just get as far away
as possible by jumping and/or using Quick Draw or Aether to avoid this attack.
Don't kill yourself when trying to run away though.  Baiting can work if he
is tricked into using the attack in the middle of the stage, but don't rely on
it.

Falco 			[FAL]


Falco has a very annoying blaster that absolutely requires approaching from
the air.  If you are far away, you may have to pull desparation moves like
jumping, using Quick Draw above the blaster fire, falling into a blaster shot,
then using your second jump to get close enough to attack.  Falco's reflector
is another low damaging annoyance that is nearly impossible to avoid up close;
Counter it if you can get close, or stop and charge a Quick Draw just outside
of the reflector's range, then release when you get a clear approach.  His
Falco Phantasm (side B) will knock you upward, which is not where you want to
be; use the neutral A combo on the ground or air dodge in the air to defeat
it. Falco mainly uses his forward smash as a KO move or when his opponent is
on the far end of melee range.  This smash can often be predicted, so a well
timed Counter will pay off well, particularly when you are highly damaged and
your opponent is trying hard to KO you.  Another option when you are at high
damage is to fight in the air; this is typically a bad idea, but Falco's
aerials cannot KO you when you are over a platform, while your forward or back
aerials can KO him.  Falco is a light fastfaller, so Aether combos will work
well against him.  Falco has a nasty chain grab involving his down throw; with
Ike's lack of fast aerials and heavy weight, you'll get repeatedly
caught by it.  Just be aware that Falco is quite likely to go for a grab at
low damage, so try to put your sword in between you and him, don't use attacks
with large downtime, and don't use uncharged Quick Draw without a guaranteed
hit.

Juggling: Okay
Falco doesn't have a fastfalling aerial, but his dair is fast and has some
downward range.  You're fine if you hit him with uair/nair slightly to the
side, however.  Falco can use side B and aim it downward, but this is just
Counter bait and should never be used by a good player.
Falco can juggle decently with his uair (or utilt if you are too close); it's
fast and has some range but loses to dair.

Edgecamping:
When Falco is knocked off, he will often try to recover with Falco Phantasm; 
putting a sword in his path, particularly the down tilt when he is going for 
the edge will finish him off.  Nair, uari or even Eruption can do a decent 
job of keeping Falco off the stage as well, if he recovers above the edge.  
Against Fire Bird (up B), jumping off and using
the down aerial or Counter can work quite well.  Falco Phantasm can kill you 
if you get hit by it over air; make sure to have a sword in Falco's path, 
or else get out of the way.  Falco has an instant spike, so you'll have to 
Counter well in advance, use a forward aerial, or try a Quick Draw over his 
head if he jumps off the platform.

Final Smash

Falco jumps up, damaging enemies on the way up, and summons his landmaster.
He can fire shots from the turret or do a barrel roll to damage enemies on the
tank.  However, Falco mainly gets landmaster KOs by rising into the air and
pushing enemies off the top of the screen.  This is very effective against
Ike's sluggish ways, so if you find yourself on top of the landmaster, use
Quick Draw to get to the nearest side and run off (not jump off).  Otherwise,
try to crouch and roll around alot.  Hiding under a platform, if there is one,
will often protect you for awhile.

Fox 			[FOX]


Fox is the quickest of the three space animals, and specializes in KOing
enemies by knocking them off the top of the screen with his up smash and up
aerial.  Fox's blaster does not stun you, so stick to the air at distance and
hit him with a Quick Draw if you are in range and he continues to spam.
However, never stay in his blaster fire unless you have no choice or you are
about to hit/grab him; it can rack up damage very quickly.  Fox is the most
deadly at close range, so use your full range against him.  In close range,
you'll just have to use the neutral A combo and hope.  Fox can bait your
usmash, utilt, and aerials by approaching from above, using his Shine
(neutral B) to stall until you finish the attack, then dropping down and
dairing you, and finishing it all with a dsmash.  This is trouble even if
you don't get caught attacking, since the dair -> dsmash combo can pierce
through your shield at times; just Aether or walk away. Fox's aerials tend
to be multihitting and are thus worthless to counter; nair is good if you
are getting run over up close, since it still outranges Fox. Fox's KO moves 
don't have much horizontal range, so keeping your distance is even more
important when you are heavily damaged.

Juggling: Never
Fox should never be juggled due to his Shine shenanigans mentioned earlier;
at best, you should uair to get the KO at high damage, hopefully surprising
him.  Aether is vastly superior to any aerial otherwise, and Fox's Shine
stalling just makes him easier to hit with Aether. Fox can also use side B 
and aim it downward, but this is just Counter bait and should never be used 
by a good player.
Falco can juggle decently with his uair (or utilt if you are too close); it's
fast and has some range but loses to dair.  His uair is more relevant as a KO
move however, due to its power and speed.

Edgecamping: (mostly pasted from Falco)
When Fox is knocked off, he will often try to recover with side B; 
putting a sword in his path, particularly the down tilt when he is going for 
the edge will finish him off.  Nair, uari or even Eruption can do a decent 
job of keeping Falco off the stage as well, if he recovers above the edge.  
Against Fire Fox (up B), jumping off and using the down aerial or Counter 
can work quite well.  Side B can kill you if you get hit by it over air; 
make sure to have a sword in Fox's path, or else get out of the way.  
Fox will probably try for a horizontal aerial, so you'll have to Counter
well in advance, use a forward aerial, or try a Quick Draw over his head if he
jumps off the platform.

Final Smash

Fox jumps up, damaging enemies on the way up, and summons his landmaster.  He
can fire shots from the turret or do a barrel roll to damage enemies on the
tank.  Fox mainly gets landmaster KOs by shooting enemies off of the screen;
Ike will take damage if he's standing on the barrel of the tank.  If you find
yourself on top of the landmaster, use Quick Draw to get to the nearest side
and run off (not jump off) to avoid being shot or levitated off the top of the
screen.  Otherwise, try to crouch and roll around alot.  Hiding under a
platform, if there is one, will often protect you for a little while.

Ganondorf 		[GAN]


Horizontal KO moves: Neutral B 30%, Fsmash 80%, Fair 90%, Dsmash 130%
Vertical KO moves: Dair 100%, Running attack 120%, Usmash 120%

G-dorf is a very slow attacker; his attacks are about as slow as Ike's, making
this a test of skill.  Both air and ground are decent options; Ganondorf's
aerials do more damage but have shorter range than Ike's aerials.  Ganondorf's
forward aerial has a notable delay before it hits, making it ripe for
Countering.  An air battle will thus go in Ike's favor if you are careful to
use his range and Counter advantages.  Juggling can work against Ganondorf,
since he is big and heavy; however, his down aerial is an incredibly powerful
spike, making this a high risk activity.  A better option is to leap up and
hope to counter his down aerial or Wizard's Foot (down B).  Ike can also use
Aether very well against Ganondorf, since he is big and heavy, so Aether
combos work well.  Ganondorf may occasionally try his up tilt or Warlock Punch
(neutral B); you can always shield out of these attacks, even if you screw up
an attack; the sole exception may be a missed forward smash.  They can both be
easily Countered, but you may mess up the timing if you are inexperienced, so
you may just want to use Quick Draw and hurt them in a pinch.  On the ground,
it's best to either stay very close to use the Neutral A combo, since G-dorf
doesn't have an equivalent fast close range combo, or far enough that the
fight is more of a Flame Choke (side B), Warlock Kick (down B), and Quick Draw
battle.  Quick Draw pierces through both Flame Choke and Warlock Kick, so Ike
will win the long range battle.  Counter is less valuable at long range; Flame
Choke is a grab and goes right through Counter, although the Warlock Kick will
be countered.  In medium range, Ike is at a bit of a disadvantage; Ganondorf's
tilts tend to be a bit faster (excluding the odd up tilt) and Ganondorf's
forward smash is faster than Ike's forward smash and more damaging than Ike's
forward tilt.  Since you have different strengths, the battle may turn into a
standoff where you sit back and wait for the other person to make a mistake,
then exploit the lag after their attack to charge in and hurt them.  However,
Ike is excellent at breaking this stalemate by simply charging Quick Draw;
Ganondorf will have to get out of the way, and you can then fight in the air
on your terms.  In fact, Quick Draw Fakeouts are very valuable for approaching
Ganondorf, particularly if your enemy is aggressive.  Perhaps the best summary
is how to lose the fight: charging in on the ground, trying to trade medium
range attacks, and letting Ganondorf play defensive and counterattack.  Don't
do this.

Juggling: Never
Ganondorf has a deadly dair with good range, and the risk vs reward is
terribly in favor of Ganondorf, unlike most other juggling matchups.  Just
Aether, since Ganondorf is an easy target, and save yourself the trouble.
That's true even when you don't consider G-Dorf's down B, which can hit you
as you're trying to get into aerial range; stay down and out of trouble, or
send your sword into trouble first with Aether.
G-Dorf can juggle you with uair, but his terrible jumping means that it
won't happen much, although his uair is quick with good range.  Dair as
per usual in advance.  Up B is another option that is also countered by dair.

Edgecamping:
Your spike has good enough range than you can spike Ganondorf out of
his Dark Dive (up B), and you can smack Ganondorf with your back aerial out of
his Flame Choke.  If you screw up (or if you just hang out on the edge of the
platform), Ganondorf will grab you and suicide KO you, which is generally not
to your benefit, so be careful.  G-dorf has his dangerous spike, which is
almost a guaranteed KO at any damage, so Counter that or die.  He can actually
spike you out of Aether with good timing; recovering very low is best.

Final Smash

Ganondorf transforms, stomps to paralyze all enemies, then charges forward and
KOs anyone in his path.  The main way to dodge this is to be behind G-dorf
when he transforms.  Otherwise, you can try to use Aether to resist the final
smash.

Ice Climbers 		[ICE]


The ice climbers have a fair amount of power, but they are largely limited by
their range.  Ike has an advantage as long as he sticks to the edge of his
range.  He does have to charge the ice climbers, since they can shoot ice at
him.  Ice is ground based, so shorthopping in through the air will work best
as an approach.  A key tactic against the Ice Climbers is to split them up and
then pick on the AI player; the occasional Aether can be your best bet to get
this to work.  Top Ice Climber players will be able to do infinite grab combos;
if they get you in this you are dead, but keep in mind that they will try to
grab you more than normal, so sword them more than normal and roll rather than
shielding; still, you're not going to win this fight unless you get forward
smash + luck.  Another unique Ice Climbers trick is desyncing them, so they
attack separately.  This is less hard for Ike to deal with than most other
people, since he can generally use his superior range to hit them.  Counter
also gains a lot of value in that situation, although it is less useful due to
the aforementioned grab combos.  Quick Draw is less useful since there tends
to be ice or hammers in your way most of the time, although it can still be
used to fake them out if they like to smash.  The Ice Climbers can be fought
in the air decently well, since their forward aerial has lag time and shorter
range than Ike's forward aerial; Counter can be quite useful in midair as well.

Juggling: Rarely
The Ice Climbers have a fastfalling dair with good downward range; normally
this would dictate a "never" rating, but if baited this move is quite easy to
punish with a ftilt or something similar.  Aether is usually better, but
jumping to bait dairs or sometimes uair them can be helpful.
The Ice Climbers have a nice uair to hurt you, which has very good vertical
range; a perfect dair will work, but air dodging is typically much better.

Edgeguarding:
The Ice Climber up B recovery is generally predictable, so they can be spiked 
with your down aerial or hit with your fair if you have less time.  
They can also use Squall Hammer (side B) to recover, but
this is rare; they are capable of picking between the two options to mess you
up however.  The Ice Climbers can spike you, so be ready to Counter or forward
aerial them as desired when you are recovering.

Final Smash

The Ice Climbers generate an iceberg that does constant damage to any
characters who are on it.  If the Ice Climbers are not nearby, then staying in
the air will avoid damage.  If they are heading over to attack you, just fight
them, preferably in the air.  Shorthopping backwards and fairing works wonders.
Avoiding the iceberg is secondary to dealing with your foes.

Ike 			[IKE]


Many Ike players can be grouped into two categories: attackers and Counterers.
(Obviously, a good player will mix attacks, Counter, and grabs.)  Against Ikes
who attack a lot, you'll want to use Counter a lot, obviously, and attack a
fair amount of the time as well.  Think of what you would do if you were the
other player, and Counter accordingly.  Grabs should be avoided unless you get
a great opportunity.  A lot of Ike players are very prone to using their up
smash when you fall from a height, so this is easily countered.  If you can
guess when they will use Quick Draw, a shield + grab + Aether or shield + tilt
response will do more damage than using Counter.  Against Counter spammers,
you should use grabs heavily; you can also use the anti-Counter techniques in
the Counter section, like charging a forward smash when you would normally use
another attack.  Against a balanced Ike player, fight relatively normally,
except to use grabs more than you normally would and on a few occasions use
the charged forward smash trick. If you both end up using Quick Draw, you'll
end up next to each other and both attacks will cancel out; the first player
to use the Neutral A combo will win the day.  Ike is relatively heavy, so 
Aether combos will work well against him.  If your opponent starts charging 
Eruption, stay back and charge Quick Draw; it's tempting to try and Counter 
or attack them, but a skilled opponent is quite capable of releasing Eruption 
at the wrong time for you.

Juggling: Rarely
Ike has that nice dair I keep mentioning, so approaching directly from below
is foolish; you can hit him with nair/uair from the side, but Aether is usually
better.
Dair will sometimes work to stop juggling, but more likely you'll just want
to land as fast as possible, due to getting Aethered or uaired/naired.

Edgeguarding:
You can spike or fair Ike, but he can Counter fair,
so dair is safer if you have your control stick set on tilts.  Obviously, the
same can happen to you, so Counter (if you can predict them well) or air dodge
(if you can't) and you'll make it back.

Final Smash

An air dodge or roll can dodge the initial hit; if Ike hits someone else, just
stay away from the center, since the final hit at the end of his combo can
hurt you.  Trying to Counter means you'll get hit, so don't bother.  Hold
down and away from the enemy Ike when you take the final hit, and you'll live
longer.

Jigglypuff 		[JIG]


Jigglypuff is still a confusing character with a dangerous air game, a nasty
roll attack, and little ground power or weight.  Stick to the ground;
Jigglypuff has a lot of agilty in the air and a skilled player will often make
you miss, then exploit the lag in your aerials.  Eruption can be a
surprisingly good option in the air, since it is hard to evade and knocking
Jigglypuff upward is very potent; you'll need to start the attack well in
advance however. Rollout (neutral B) should not be Countered unless Jigglypuff
uses it from a considerable distance, since Jigglypuff can hold the charge
forever.  Quick Draw will not beat Rollout, but it will keep you from being
damaged, so charging a Quick Draw in a tight spot can keep you from being
crushed by it.  Jigglypuff does not have a projectile, making Quick Draw
fakeouts a useful trick.  Rest (down B) is weaker than it once was, although
using attacks with a long downtime is still a bad idea.  This includes
Counter; don't use it unless you are very confident your enemy will hit you.
You can punish a missed Rest with a charged forward smash for an easy kill,
making it a rare move from Jigglypuff.  Shield after you attack, and you may
hit the jackpot, so to speak. Jigglypuff is too light for many
Aether combos, except at very low damage.

Juggling: Okay
Jigglypuff falls slowly and has a dair with low range; this would make juggling
very good, except that Jigglypuff will often be knocked out of range by your
aerials.  Jiggly can then escape with its good air speed, so Aether for more
damage is often useful; variety is best though.  Uair KOs are more important
later on, so save that move.
Jigglypuff has terrible upward range with its uair, so dair can stop it easily.
A bigger issue is Jigglypuff dodging and hitting you from the sides, in which
case Counter/fair/bair/nair all become viable options.

Edgecamping:
Edgecamping is difficult against
Jigglypuff, who has an excellent recovery and isn't resigned to moving slowly
toward the platform; the forward aerial, back aerial, and down aerial are all
reasonable options.  The greater arc of the forward aerial can offset the
decreased speed, so pick a direction that you like.  If Jigglypuff is using
Rollout, just get back to the platform unless you can get a quick hit in.
Jigglypuff's edgecamping mainly involves jumping out and putting lots of
aerials in your face; Counter may be your best option here.  A charged Quick
Draw recovery will fail against a good Jigglypuff, who will just float in your
way, so don't try it unless you are desperate or you are willing to trade your
life to possibly hit Jigglypuff will a fully charged Quick Draw.

Final Smash

Jigglypuff puffs up to a very large size and damages enemies who touch it.
Just run away to the farthest edge; if you have to get hit, try using Aether
so you don't get knocked away.

King Dedede 		[DED]


King Dedede is the odd heavyweight with a projectile and an excellent
recovery.  Dedede is very formidable to approach from the ground due to his
Waddle Dee (side B) spam and his forward tilt, which has huge range.  Due to
this, approaching with a Counter or a down aerial (from a full jump) is often
best.  Once you get in range, keep hitting him with the neutral A combo or
tilts; King Dedede is especially weak up close, so the neutral A combo is
quite potent.  The big problems you'll have are with King Dedede's grabs; King
Dedede likes to grab people like [ANALOGY REDACTED] and has excellent range
and damage (up to 16%) with his grabs.  Don't shield or Counter up close
(unless you are reacting to an attack); roll away if possible.  King Dedede
does have a forward smash that is as powerful as Ike's, so don't walk into it
and try to Counter if you do see it coming.  Quick Draw is severely devalued
because it will target the Waddle Dees that wander around the platform, so
don't use it if you won't hit the King himself.  Occasionally, King Dedede
will charge up Jet Hammer (down B) and wander around; stay back and don't try
to Counter it.  You can try to hit him with a long range attack if you're
brave, or you can jump onto the edge and Aether him if he gets close.  In the
air, King Dedede will be outranged by Ike's side aerials, so air to air combat
is fine, but he has good range with his up and down aerials, so try to avoid
those and Aether him instead of juggling (as usual).

Edgecamping:
King Dedede is difficult
to edgecamp because he can use his Super Dedede Jump (up B) to recover, even
from the bottom of the stage to recover from a spike.  If he has to use his up
B, you're better off staying on the platform and hitting him when he's about
to land; use the charged forward smash if you have great timing, the up aerial
or up smash if you have good timing, and Counter otherwise.  If he can recover
just by jumping, smacking him with an aerial or faking that you'll smack him
and then jumping back will at least help you, although it probably won't kill
him.  Using Quick Draw to recover won't work against a good King Dedede, who
will toss Waddle Dees in front of you and force you to hit them and die or get
hit and lose your charge; Aether is best against a good King Dedede.

Final Smash

King Dedede summons his Waddle Dee Army to destroy you.  The best way to evade
this is to stay away from the edges, jump and air dodge a lot.  It generally
won't kill you unless you get hit several times off of the edge, but it can
hurt quite a bit.

Kirby 			[KIR]


Kirby is quite fast and quite light.  Kirby has almost no range and no
projectile (other than the shockwave from his Final Cutter up B), so Ike can
use his range to the fullest; putting a sword in Kirby's face at a distance is
pretty much the optimal way to fight the little puffball.  Quick Draw is useful
as a defensive move or as an approach, but most of Kirby's moves, other than
his Hammer (Side B) don't have much downtime to exploit, so you'll need good
timing to hit him.  Counter is useful, but Kirby can use Swallow (neutral B)
in midair, so don't be completely confident in being able to Counter all of
Kirby's aerials.  Kirby can take Eruption from you using Swallow, which is
fine because Kirby can't use Swallow again and Eruption is hardly a great
move, so don't discourage that.  Kirby can also try to suicide KO you by
swallowing your and walking off the edge; mash the buttons to try and break
out whenever you are swallowed to prevent this.  Many of Kirby's aerials are
combo based, making Counter less useful, and they tend to be pretty fast, so
avoid the air and play defensive if you find yourself up there. Rock Drop
(down B) will punish you if you try to juggle, so stick to Aethering Kirby in
midair and you'll be okay.  If Kirby lands as a rock, you can grab him
immediately or try to anticipate when he'll transform back and forward
smash/tilt him.  Kirby's KO moves are mostly short ranged, with the exception
of his forward smash; his Hammer (on the ground) is the most powerful, but
also the slowest, so this can often be Countered if you anticipate Kirby
trying to finish you off.

Kirby is tough to edgecamp because he can 
frequently sail over you; use Aether if he appears to be going up high.  If
not, try to hit him with the forward aerial when he is too far out to use
Final Cutter.  Kirby can jump out and hit you, but can be sent packing with
the forward aerial; charging Quick Draw probably won't work because Kirby can
just float in your way, so Aether is the best if Kirby knows how to stop Quick
Draw.

Final Smash

Kirby puts on his chef hat and tries to cook everyone in the area for dinner.
It can be air dodged or better yet sidestepped; being out of the area will work
 fine too.  The ending of the Final Smash will generate lots of items; try to 
go for these if possible.
	
Link 			[LIN]


Link has almost as much range as you and also has projectiles and a ranged grab,
so you'll have to approach him.  The optimal range for fighting Link is
different than usual; you'll want to be in close, where you can hit him with
the neutral A combo, or just outside of his sword range, where you can go for
a forward smash, Quick Draw him if he tries to boomerang you, Counter the
second hit of his forward smash, or shorthop an aerial if Link goes for a
grab.  Link's neutral A combo is less damaging than yours but has excellent
range and blocks all of your attacks, so staying in tilt range will generally
not favor you against a skilled Link.  Link has good projectiles to deter
approaching enemies and is capable of aiming his boomerang upwards to hit you
in midair, so approach cautiously and always be ready to air dodge or shield.
Link's most powerful KO move is his down aerial, which kills very early and
deters jugglers; Ike has less of a problem than most characters against this
because he doesn't juggle much, can Counter it, and can use his up smash with
far better range.  If Link still decides to use it and misses, a smash is a
good retort.  Link's fair combos you pretty nicely at low % and his aerials
tend to have little lag, so be careful.  His zair (hookshot) does 4+6% damage
and outranges your fair, which may mess up your approach plans.  Edgecamping 
Link is best done with the forward aerial, since you'll have a range 
advantage, or with the down aerial, assuming you can dodge
his up B recovery.  Link can use his hookshot as a Tether, so edgehogging and
Counter generally won't work.  Simply hitting Link will work best, since his
weak recovery means that he'll usually get KOed.  The one big danger is that
Link will snag you with the Gale Boomerang when you jump out, making you fall
to your death; be ready to abort and jump back if this looks likely.  Link
can't really do much against Ike other than using projectiles, which can be
air dodged, or aerials, which can be defeated by the forward aerial.

Final Smash

Link binds his target between two Triforces, which can hit for a fairly long
range in front of him, then delivers a nasty series of slashes and almost
invariably KOs his target.  This is quite similar to Ike's final smash, so
dodge it the same way (rolling, sidestepping, or air dodging).

Lucario 		[LCO]


Lucario gains power as he becomes more damaged, so early kills are more
rewarding than usual.  A forward smash gamble is excellent for this, but
charge the forward smash and only release it if Lucario is vulnerable, since
he does have a counter (Double Team, down B).  If you do accidentally set off
Double Team, hold shield immediately and you may be able to avoid the damage.
Lucario's attacks have better range than they look due to the Aura that fills
his attacks, so be wary; Ike still outranges him though.  It's very important
to space well and not just land near him; Lucario's fsmash hurts. Lucario is
fairly quick in the air and has decent range, so you'll want to fight 
defensively in the air and mainly stick to Aethering him if he is airborne.  
On the ground,
Lucario has his Aura Sphere (neutral B) which is powerful when fully charged
and can ruin your Quick Draws when uncharged.  An air approach is usually
best, but be ready to air dodge.  Lucario can grab you with Force Palm (side
B) in midair, so don't be overly reliant on Counter.  Lucario is quick in the
air, so use the usual defensive strategy if you end up fighting in midair and
use your full range.

Edgecamping Lucario is fairly effective; although
Lucario can Counter your aerials, he will often Counter, reappear too low to
recover, and fall to his death.  You do have to be ready for Lucario to use
his up B to recover through you, which won't set off your Counter, but he'll
pause before he uses it, so you can smack him if he starts it too late.
Lucario can't do much unusual when you're off the platform, although you may
need to air dodge an Aura Sphere, so stay awake.

Final Smash

Lucario leaps up and howls as he aims a giant blast downward, which can be
aimed slowly.  Once you are hit, you are stuck in the attack for the duration.
This is a weak Final Smash against most characters, who can jump to avoid it;
Ike is too heavy to dodge this attack very effectively.  Try to get up high,
use your double jump, and then Aether; even if you can't dodge the whole
attack, getting hit only by the end is better than taking the full attack head
on.
	
Lucas 			[LCS]



Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 90%, Dsmash (sweetspot) 90%, Fair 150%
Vertical KO moves: Usmash 90%, dthrow 160%

Lucas does not have great range, but has a nasty array of projectiles to cause
you pain.  PK fire (side B) will ruin your Quick Draws and punish you from
afar; try to dodge or jump and make Lucas miss, since this will give you a
brief opening.  PK freeze (neutral B) and PK thunder (up B) can be dodged or
Countered, but your best retort is a Quick Draw if you can hit Lucas, since he
will be vulnerable.  Your optimal fighting range is, as usual, at the tip of
your sword range.  In the air, Lucas is quicker with shorter ranged attacks,
so play defensive; Counter or any aerial will work fine here.  Against a
grounded Lucas, be careful; Lucas's up smash is slow but deadly, and can KO
you around 80%; trading a down aerial for getting hit by the up smash is not
worth it, so don't be above Lucas unless you can hit him quickly or you have
Counter planned.  Lucas will sometimes try to approach you by full hopping his
down aerial at you; this is a multihit attack that is awkward to deal with,
but a well-timed up smash or a backwards shorthopped forward aerial can work.
Edgecamping Lucas can work well if you hit him while he is aiming PK thunder
at himself, but don't be slow; Lucas has one of the most damaging recovery
moves in the game.  Countering it isn't worthwhile either, as it is a multihit
attack.  Lucas can use his wide array of projectiles to edgecamp you; be ready
to air dodge or Counter, and remember that Quick Draw can be used to dodge and
recover if you get a chance.

Final Smash

Lucas yells, "PK Thunderrrrr," and causes comets to rain from the sky.
Shielding will fail here, so dodge or roll out of the way.  Stay on the ground
to ensure that you can roll out of the way.  Feel free to try and knock the 
smash ball out of Lucas before he uses it; there's no particular penalty for 
being close when he starts the final smash.

Luigi 			[LUG]


Luigi has quick and effective aerial attacks, so be wary and keep your
distance.  Sticking to the ground is generally best.  It is particularly
dangerous to give Luigi an opening with a missed attack, since his Super Jump
Punch (up B) can do huge damage and knockback if Luigi is right next to you;
always shield or use the neutral A combo when you miss an attack, if Luigi is
close enough to punish you.  Otherwise, Luigi will shoot Fireballs (neutral B)
at you from a distance; these can be dodged or shielded quite easily, but be
on the lookout.  Luigi can also approach you with the Green Missile (side B),
which can be easily shielded; Quick Draw will also pierce through it, although
shield + attack will do more damage.  If he charges up the Green Missile,
don't use Counter; charge up Quick Draw instead and just hit him when he gets
in range.  Luigi has good throws, so be ready to punish Luigi if he tries to
grab, and keep your distance.  Edgecamping Luigi can be easy or nearly
impossible, depending on how he uses Green Missile; if he uses it and lands 
anywhere near you, send him back out with a forward aerial (better than the
back aerial due to its bigger attack arc) or forward tilt.  Do the same thing
if Luigi uses the Super Jump Punch at a higher altitude.  Luigi has fireballs
to edgecamp you, so be ready to air dodge, but aerials are more likely if
anything.  Luigi has a very limited spike, so have Counter if ready.

Final Smash

Luigi does a bizarre dance and creates a "negative zone"; anyone who is near
him is put to sleep.  Once he uses it, Luigi can KO anyone in the zone.  Stay
away from him and try to stay in the air; fighting him will work just fine
outside of the zone.  Hanging off of the edge and Aethering if he gets close
can also work in a pinch.

Mario 			[MRO]


Mario has a nondamaging FLUDD (down B) attack that can push you off of the 
edge while charging an attack or can trick you into doing an aerial off of the
edge, causing you to kill yourself.  Mario has a decent fireball projectile
(neutral B) to punish you; airdodge or shield to stop it.  Mario's Cape
(side B) is quick and can flip you around; a Quick Draw can turn you the right
way, although a back aerial would be an even better retort in the air.  Mario
also has good throws; punish them with your sword or neutral A combo as 
needed.  Otherwise, Mario is unspectacular and is best countered by using your
sword's maximum range.  Mario can juggle you in the air, but his moves all 
have inferior range, so you can dair him with careful timing.  Mario's aerials
are quick (except fair) with low range; utilt is useful to set up for Aether
or juggling as a response. His KO moves are his forward smash and up smash, 
both of which can be dodged by staying at range; at higher damage, throws may
KO you too.

Edgecamping Mario can be done by jumping out and hitting him with an
aerial.  Mario can spike with his forward aerial; forward aerial him or
Counter him if he jumps out.  Mario can also fireball you, so be ready to air
dodge, and otherwise you mostly just need to dodge aerials.  He does have one
nasty trick where he can cape either recovery move, but he has to hit you to
do it; this is a guaranteed KO unless you will still make it to the edge with
Reverse Aether, since you will be facing the wrong way.  Even then, you can be
edgehogged, so avoid being caped at all costs.

Final Smash

Mario releases a giant fireball, which does relatively small damage but has
good knockback.  If you are hit near the edge of a stage, you will die; keep
that in mind and keep your opponent between you and the edge (which you should
be doing anyway).  If you are quick, you can fake Mario out by jumping over
him and causing him to release the attack in the wrong direction.

Marth 			[MRH]



Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash (tip) 70%, Fsmash (blade) 130%, Up B 130%
Vertical KO moves: Side B (4th upward hit) 130%, Usmash/Dsmash 140%

Marth is the quicker swordsman, but has quite a bit less knockback than you.
This is guaranteed to be a tough fight, but fight defensively and try to use
Counter heavily against Marth's forward aerial spam or if he seems determined
to dominate you with his quicker attacks.  Don't stay in the range of Marth's
sword tip, or you will be setting yourself up to die early due to Marth's
extra knockback.  Staying in close is better than usual, and is especially
important when you are at high damage, as Marth has little knockback when he
can't hit with the tip of his blade.  Marth does have a Counter which is
superior to yours, due to its speed; staying near grab range can be a great
asset, and try to charge up a forward smash or Eruption if you can predict
the Counter.  Avoid charging in spamming the forward aerial at all costs; its
only worthwhile as part of a balanced strategy with Quick Draw fakeouts or
the aforementioned charged Eruption.  Marth's Dancing Blade (side B) is a
deadly and quick combo at any range; Ike needs to either use the neutral A
combo or shield, but neither option is perfect here.  Marth's Dolphin Slash
(up B) has surprising knockback and guarantees a KO at very high damages; the
only counter is to be shielding, since a Counter will not hit Marth due to him
instantly moving out of the way.  As usual with Ike, you'll have to predict
your opponent's move, rather than trying to react to them.  Quick Draw is good
to punish missed attacks, but a Marth with excellent reflexes can actually use
Dolphin Slash to counter it, so don't rely on it as a primary attack unless
your opponent can't deal with it.  The other option for fighting against Marth
is to fight at extreme range; you need to be an expert at using your maximum
range, but the forward aerial can work very well because Marth's Counter
doesn't reach far enough to hit you back.  Fighting in midair is generally a
horrible idea, except for cautious shorthopped attacks, since Marth has better
speed and good range.  Counter can swing things your way, but don't expect it
to win this fight for you.

Edgecamping Marth works poorly, although using a
spike can swing things your way.  Marth's Dolphin Slash can't be effectively
countered.  Marth may edgecamp you by Countering Aether, which is annoying but
generally won't stop your from recovering.  Marth may jump out and try to hit
you with a forward aerial or try to Counter your defensive forward aerial; air
dodge, Counter, or use the forward aerial based on what you think the
appropriate response is.

Final Smash

Marth raises his sword, then charges forward very quickly and hits anyone in
range.  Anyone hit will be KOed, even at 0%.  If Marth uses this attack in the
air, he will charge off the screen to his death unless he hits an enemy or
hits B very quickly.  The best approach is to air dodge and stay away; if
Marth uses the attack, air dodge or sidestep immediately.  Try to bait him
into using it in the air, on the off chance that Marth will suicide.

Metaknight		[MET]



Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 110%, Dsmash (sourspot) 120%, Up B 130%
Vertical KO moves: Utilt/smash 160%

Metaknight is incredibly fast, can slice right through your jabs, and has a
nearly unstoppable recovery.  He's also incredibly light, and his range is
no match for yours (as usual).  So, this becomes a match based on range and
spacing.  You'll have to play defensively; keep your distance at all costs and
don't ever charge in without a very good reason.  Shorthopping backwards and 
doing a fair is an excellent way to counter his aggression and speed.
Metaknight is infamous for his Mach Tornado (neutral B), but all of your
sword moves can pierce through it (fair and ftilt are usually best), so he
shouldn't be using that from range much.  He can use Drill Rush (side B) to 
punish your mistakes easily even from range, so don't be foolish.  Metaknight
has a great air game, so keep your distance and try not to go above a short 
hop.  He will also typically follow up an aerial with a down smash, so don't
let your shield get too low.  Metaknight will punish you mercilessly if you 
get above him; Counter is generally ineffective against his uair, but you 
can sometimes use Eruption to land and/or KO him.  Incidentally, Ike's best 
KO moves are upward for this match, so use utilt/smash and/or Eruption.  MK
can KO with his down smash or his up B, so stay at long range when damaged.

Edgecamping a good Metaknight is basically impossible; however, he will often
glide back and try a glide attack on you; this can hurt, but it can often be
Countered.  Metaknight can smack you with lots of aerials and cause lots of
pain in general; use your fair/Counter wisely, and try a few air dodges too.

Final Smash

Metaknight envelops any enemies in front of him with his cape.  After the
screen goes dark, he does a surprisingly weak hit to anyone he catches.  The
difference here is that he also does a lesser hit to every enemy on the
screen.  If MK is after you, airdodge/sidestep as usual.  If he catches
someone else, sidestep like mad (or time it, if you know the timing) and you
might not get hit.

Mr Game and Watch 	[GAM]


Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 100%, Dsmash (sourspot) 100%, fair 130%
Vertical KO moves: Usmash 90%, Dsmash (sweetspot) 90%

Mr Game and Watch is a quick but hard-hitting light character with potent
aerials.  Of note is his back aerial, which is a multihitting attack that
pierces through shields and will be abused by any good opponent.  You can
Counter for 10% damage or shorthop backwards and fair; the latter is 
typically better.  Range is the key to this matchup, since G-dub hits very
hard with most of his attacks.  His other aerials are very fast, and he has
a fastfalling dair that creates a small shockwave when it lands, making it
tough to grab him upon landing.  Use your sword instead. G-dub hits hard on
the ground and can ko with all of his smashes; the down smash in particular is
commonly the source of your demise.  His specials are pretty irrelevant except
for his up B, which is nearly instant and allows him to pick an aerial of his
choice to hurt you afterward.  Stay on the ground, and don't expect dair to 
counter his up B.  As for you, ftilt, fair, fsmash, and bair are all pretty
handy here, while the neutral A combo is still great up close.  Quick Draw
will quickly get you burnt by his frying pan, so don't bother except when 
there's an opening.  He can juggle you easily with his up tilt, so use the
neutral A combo up close or keep your distance.  G-dub is very light, so 
usmash and Eruption are great kill moves; Eruption-baiting in the air is 
very effective and counters juggling decently well.  Utilt is generally 
outranged by G-dubs aerials, but smack him with it if he leaves an opening.

Game and Watch's key can be countered, but you need to predict it, since the
attack comes out very fast.  He can use it to hit you, even through a platform
since Ike is tall and the key has range below G-dub himself.

Game and Watch can pretty much
hit you with any aerial while you're recovering and make it back; use Counter
or fair to make him pay.  Counter is great against his fair.  You can 
edgeguard with a fair, but it's only really worthwhile if he's already burnt 
his up B, since he can just up B when he sees you leap out and make you the
victim.  You can fake him out, but he can still typically land, so be 
cautious.  If he tends to recover high by burning his up B at the wrong time,
it's possible to send him packing with a bair or even a fsmash, but if he's
smart, you should mainly play it safe.  If he recovers really high, Aether will
at least add a bit of damage.

Final Smash

Game and Watch turns into a giant octopus.  Not much to say here except that
he will hurt you, so jump around and run away.  Ike, as usual, is pretty poor
for dodging long duration final smashes.  One oddity is that Game and Watch 
only has a second jump in this form, so you may be able to bait him off the
edge and make him commit suicide.  You are best off hiding by an edge, since
he will either suicide or just have to camp by the edge, minimizing the number
of hits you can take.

*Other anti-character strategies coming soon*
	
Ness 			[NES]


Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash (tip) 100%, Bthrow 130%, Fsmash (middle) 130%
Vertical KO moves: Uair 140%, utilt/usmash 160%

Ness has a very nasty PK Fire (side B) projectile that will essentially
paralyze you and set you up for all sorts of pain, often a back throw (which
kills rather quickly) or sometimes a smash.  It's not Counterable, as you'll
still get burned, but if you can dodge it you can often get a good hit in on
Ness, as there's a lot of downtime after the attack.  An fair can hit Ness 
and dodge PK fire up close, so you can punish him if he is predictable. Ness
also has PK Thunder (up B), which he can steer into himself to make a very 
powerful and very Counterable attack or steer at you to do a minor amount of
damage.  PK Flash (neutral B) is easy to punish with Quick Draw if you're near
the ground; air dodge if you're vulnerable in the air, or even Counter. Ness
has decent aerials that are outranged by yours as usual.  His aerials do have
decent range and every aerial except dair is lagless.  Ness also has a 
powerful projectile in PK fire, which goes at a 45 degree angle downward in
midair.  Did I mention Ness has PK fire?  Seriously, keep that in mind
throughout the match. Ness can also juggle you with his uair or his PK
Thunder; your dair can stop the first but not the second.  Ness will mainly 
KO you with his fsmash or back throw, so keep your distance at high damage,
stick to faster attacks, and avoid using your fsmash even more than usual.
Ness can also bair you to death later on, so being in the air does not make
you safe.  It becomes very awkward to survive against Ness, since against
most characters you can shield all of their KO moves; you'll have to play
the guessing game to stay alive.

Ness can spike you and will get away with it if you recover too close in, so
stay low if you're close.  He may also try to hit you with his projectiles;
this can actually work against Ike since he can't burn his up B before he's
hit, so try to air dodge. Ike can try to Counter Ness's recovery, fair/dair
him, or just get hit by the PK Thunder; pick one based on how far out Ness
is.

Final Smash

Ness yells PK Thunder, but takes longer than usual.  Lots of comets rain from
the sky, doing decent damage and knockback to anyone in their path.  Ness is
invulnerable during this, but you can try to sidestep/roll/air dodge the
comets.  Feel free to try and knock the smash ball out of Ness before he uses
it; there's no particular penalty for being close when he starts the final
smash.

 	
Olimar 			[OLI]

	
Pikachu 		[PIK]


Usmash, whether standing still, running, or out of shield, will probably be
your demise in this match. It doesn't have much range, but it's quick and the
aforementioned run or out of shield options are the ways you may die.

	
Pit 			[PIT]


If Pit uses his angel ring, you can hit Pit with a fair even if you are right
on the edge of the ring's radius, but if you use a fsmash, you'll get hit
since you would move slightly forward, so just use fair as a counter.
	
Pokemon Trainer 	[POK]

Final Smash

The camera zooms in for Triple Finish, which takes a while to start up and
does a large amount of damage directly in front of, but not behind, the
Pokemon.  You can often avoid the final smash by jumping behind the Pokemon,
so stay relatively close to make this possible.  If the final smash misses
you, try not to kill yourself by jumping off the edge, since you can't see
yourself; just try not to move horizontally.

- Charizard 		[CHA]


Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 80%, bair (tip) 110%, dtilt (tip) 120%,
ftilt (center) 130%
Vertical KO moves: Usmash 120%, Dsmash 140%

You have almost every advantage over Charizard, except for his Rock Smash 
(side B), his weight, and his recovery.  Charizard has a sweetspot on the
tip of his tail.  His neutral A combo is almost as good as yours, so being
close is not as good as usual. You're best off at range, since Rock Smash 
has a sweetspot that can hurt and kill you quickly up close.  Counter is 
great against his Rock Smash or Fire Breath (neutral B).  On the ground, 
Charizard is not that different from you, with a slow but deadly fsmash 
and tilts with decent range.  However, your attacks will beat his, since 
you have a sword, and Charizard is a bigger target.  Grab -> Aether combos
are potent.  Charizard does have a nice dsmash, which will punish your rolls
 and general openings. In the air, Charizard has fairly weak aerials with 
decent but lesser range; it's fine to fight here, but watch out for that
tip. Remember that Rock Smash is a nice aerial, even if it is a
little slower; your fair isn't all that fast either.  Charizard's fair does
shoot flames out a good distance, but these do little damage. Charizard is 
weak to your juggling and can be Aethered without much trouble.  Ike can 
be juggled, but dair will help to prevent that.  The wild cards throughout
all of this are Rock Smash and Charizard's fsmash; if Charizard can
get a full hit from one of these on Ike early, you can be in for lots of 
trouble.  He can also KO relatively early with his quick tilts.

Charizard can head out and either smack you with a fast aerial (probably
fair, which has a sweetspot at the wings and sends you off at a bad
angle) or try to sweetspot Rock Smash as an alternative, while still 
recovering easily.  Fair will keep you mostly safe.  Charizard has great 
horizontal recovery and decent vertical recovery; while spiking would 
sound good, Charizard's up B can ignore spikes, so just use fair against a
low Charizard and bair against a high Charizard (from gliding).  Countering
a glide attack is always fun.

- Ivysaur 		[IVY]

The first rule of Ivysaur: don't be above Ivysaur.

- Squirtle 		[SQU]

Squirtle is a fast character with good, quick aerials.

If he tries to recover with side B, you can knock him back out to his death
with an aerial.  A skilled Squirtle won't try this however.

Princess Peach 		[PEA]

Peach's Fair can pierce through your shield if part of you is exposed; don't
expect shielding to work repeatedly, and try to dodge rather than shield.

R.O.B. 			[ROB]

Horizontal KO moves: Fsmash 130%, Bair 140%, Down B (full charge) 150%
Vertical KO moves: Usmash 110% (midair hit), Nair 160%, Dsmash 170%

Many ROBs will open the fight with their laser; start by shielding.  Rob is
mainly defined by his projectiles in this fight; you will need to air dodge
and approach from the air, since they are both anti-ground.  Rob's laser
(neutral B) can also be angled upward, so be on your guard.  Rob's gyro 
(down B) spins for a while on the ground and continues to damage you; jump over
it or move away. Quick draw is thus quite bad as an approach or as a fakeout.  
Once you get in close, you'll need to use quick attacks like the neutral A 
combo to deal damage, since all of Rob's moves are very fast.  His down smash 
does good damage and is fast out of a spot dodge.  The key to this fight is 
knocking Rob into the air; he's a big target and can be hit by pretty much 
anything there.  Despite all of Rob's attacks, most of them don't do much 
damage, so you'll do well by trading hits.  Rob's aerials are fast and his 
nair/bair can KO, so you'll want to bair or use defensive fairs as usual.  He
has a double fair combo that he can pull at low percents, so watch for that,
along with a possible projectile follow-up.  Rob also has good throws for
damage and followups with uair/projectiles.
Rob has a hard time KOing you since his Usmash can't hit a grounded Ike, but
he can KO quite easily at high damages with his fsmash or nair.

Juggling: Good
You can use Aether, uair, or nair to hit Rob, and he can't do much about it.
His dair comes out slowly and the range isn't that great, although you should
still attack slightly off to the side.  Aether is just fine if ROB is actually
hitting you.
Rob is a decent jumper, has a fast uair, and can stay in the air as long as
he likes.  Dair and fastfall to mostly stay out of trouble.



Samus			[SAM]
- Zero Suit Samus 	[ZER]
Snake 			[SNA]
Sonic 			[SON]
Toon Link 		[TOO]


Watch out for the dair; it fastfalls and it bounces to do lots of damage.
Countering fails because it has downward range; roll out of the way.

Wario 			[WAR]


Wario is agile, fast, and unpredictable.  He also has terrible range, and 
nearly every attack you have outranges him.
Utilt is godly to counter his speedy aerials; abuse it.

Wario's fsmash has frames in which he doesn't flinch; avoid jumping in
with nairs against a grounded Wario when you're heavily damaged for this
reason.  Defensive nairs are still fine (and helpful).

Wolf 			[WOL]


Horizontal KO moves: Dsmash 110-120%, Bair 130%, Fsmash 160%
Vertical KO moves: Usmash 140%, Utilt 150%, Fair 160%

Wolf has a fast and good fsmash, which is best punished by a shield-grab.  From
a distance, he has his blaster (neutral B), which can be shielded or air
dodged.  Unfortunately, Wolf can also combo well with his throws, so you have
to mix up your approaches instead of jumping in with fair, which is easily 
punished by the fsmash.  Shield, spot dodge, and do what you can to avoid
being predictable.  Wolf's aerials are all very fast, and only his fair/dair
have much downtime, but the fair doesn't have any time when used quickly.
Be defensive in the air and stick to bair or retreating fair; Counter is too
slow to be of much use here.  Your best bet in this fight is point blank range,
or baiting wolf into attacks that you can then fair/ftilt.  Mainly, the neutral
A combo or grab -> aether combos are the best ways to rack up damage.  If you
are below Wolf, you can also get some good damage in.
Wolf's most dangerous KO moves are horizontal, so stay near the middle.  Dsmash
and bair are both very fast and don't leave Wolf vulnerable.  Later on, utilt
is also a quick and effective kill move, and it has more horizontal range than
you'd expect.

Juggling: Good
Wolf has a nice slow dair spike with little range, so you can use uair, nair,
or Aether to your heart's content.  He might try to up B downward; Aether will
stop that quickly.
Wolf is a champion juggler, as his uair and fair are both very fast and have
good range. Wolf is also a good jumper.  You can sorta Counter fair and you can
sorta dair his uair, but mainly you will just need to air dodge and fastfall.

Wolf will probably try for his side B recovery, which is horizontal and 
slightly upward.  If he doesn't sweetspot the ledge, you can hit him back out.
Otherwise, he'll use his up B, which can be intercepted with a well-timed
aerial but is tough to deal with.  Mainly, try to make him worry; his up B is
hard to aim and some Wolf's will kill themselves by mistake when under
pressure.  Wolf can spike you or more likely bair you; air dodge, fair, and
counter are effective as usual.  He can also blaster you out of the top of
Aether, if you aim poorly.

Zelda	 		[ZEL]


Zelda can burn you with Din's Fire (side B) when you are attacking, in the
air, recovering, crouching, or any other time you give her an opening.  This is
essential to keep in mind during the match; it does lots of damage and has 
enough knockback to kill you when you are high in the air.  Air dodging is nice
when you can pull it off, but Zelda can vary the timing on releasing Din's Fire
(as soon as it would hit you or letting it go past, then releasing), so Counter
is actually safer here.  If you fight a Zelda player, particularly a bad one,
you'll get plenty of practice.  Zelda also has very powerful fair and bairs,
which can kill you around 80%, so be cautious when Zelda is in the air.  The
attack does hit pretty high up, so you can crouch and then retaliate with utilt
or usmash on the ground.  In the air... you'll have to predict it and Counter,
smack her with fair, or just air dodge. Trading hits is a loser's game.  Zelda
has an uair that will kill you early and has good range (i.e. Counter won't
hit her); Eruption baiting will work decently well as a retort (or very well if
you need to KO), but dodging by any means is best.  On the ground, Zelda has
lengthy multihit smashes that you'll need to shield.  She can also juggle you 
with usmash/utilt for a while.  Zelda can teleport around with Farore's Wind 
(up B); learn the range of it and try to have a dash attack or tilt waiting for
her when she arrives. Ike does have range here, although not as much
as usual; what's really preferable is to get up in her face and neutral A 
combo/uthrow -> Aether her.  You can still hit her with fair if you are careful
but be cautious.  The best close range attack she has is dsmash,  which is fast
but not as damaging. You're also heavier than her; she's easy to KO upward, so
usmash, utilt (particularly against her fair/bair), or Eruption
work well.  Zelda can kill you with her aerials early or with her smashes at
more normal damages.
Zelda can spike you with dair, which is pretty much a guaranteed KO, or hit
you with fair/bair, or blast you with Din's Fire.  Be ready to dodge/fair/
Counter; you'll have some warning either way, since Zelda will jump out or 
start the Din's Fire casting animation.  You can fair Zelda if she's close, but
Farore's Wind is an awkward, albeit long range recovery.  Expect that she'll 
pick one of the eight main directions on the joystick when she recovers, and
have a smash/aerial waiting.  It's tough for her to sweetspot the ledge, so 
wait until she uses her up B and then punish her.

Final Smash

Zelda whips out her bow and shoots everyone in a line in front of her.  It's
typically a guaranteed KO for one target, but drops in power as more targets
are hit.  You can air dodge/sidestep it if you see it coming, as per usual.
Everyone gets paralyzed while the smash is happening, so you can't help out if
your teammate uses it.


- Sheik			[SHE]


Sheik is quick, can grab or combo you easily with many moves, can toss Needles
(neutral B) at you, and can't KO for quite a long time.  Your main concern in
this fight is not leaving yourself vulnerable to Sheik, which is easier said
than done.  Sheik can run at you and grab, dash attack, or shield, which can
nullify most of your normal defenses.  Your best option in many cases is to
shorthop backward and fair, perhaps even going for a shield-aerial lure.
This tactic will help to keep Sheik off balance, and is still great against
almost all fast characters. Sheik also has ftilt lock, which can rack up lots
of damage; keep your distance. Sheik's fsmash covers decent horizontal range;
shield-grabbing works just fine. Your goal is to get in close enough to fair
if Sheik decides to needle you, but be cautious.  In the air, Sheik has very
fast aerials with terrible range; fair from a distance, nair up close (or if
you're uncertain).  Juggling is problematic if you are low, but up high you
can dair or counter; fastfall to land anyway.  Sheik will often try to needle
you when you land; air dodge as you approach the ground to save yourself from
some damage.  Sheik has a fastfalling low damage dair; juggling is still 
probably fine, but Aether is generally better as usual for fastfalling 
opponents.  Sheik will probably try to KO with fair or usmash, both of which
are short range, so don't try to fight up close and avoid laggy moves like
fsmash when you are heavily damaged.  There's also some possiblity she'll
transform to Zelda for KOs; charge a smash (up close) or Quick Draw (far away)
to punish this, since the transformation leaves them vulnerable.

Shiek can knock you away with fair off the ledge, and that's mostly it. Fair
or Counter in advance and you should be okay.  Needles can also be used to
slightly hamper your recovery, but they won't stop you in most situations; air
dodge anyway, since Counter will hurt your momentum somewhat.  Fair is often
best against Sheik, who pauses in place briefly before using her up B.

Final Smash

Same as Zelda's, with slightly different knockback; deal with it the same way.

*******************************************************************************
*       Section 8: Game Type Strategies                                       *
*******************************************************************************


8.1 -[ Stock ]-


This is standard for one on one fighting.  With 3 or 4 players, be sure not to
get stuck in the middle of two players, and play more cautiously than you
normally would.  Don't jump out to spike someone if another enemy will just
spike you when you try to come back.  If one person is notably ahead, mainly
focus on them.  If people start ganging up on you, use Counter much more than
normal.  Even if one person is "smart" and tries to go for a grab, odds are
someone else will hit you anyways, so Counter will work well.

8.2 -[ Time ]-


In one on one, this is fairly normal, except that you should go for
desparation KOs using the forward smash near the end of the time limit if your
enemy is at medium damage (and you can't be killed by a single enemy smash).
Since they won't die to any other move (excluding a charged Eruption), you may
as well go for a slim chance, rather than no chance.  The exception is when
your opponent can Counter your attack, but even then it may be worthwhile.  In
a 3 or 4 player brawl, KOs are what matter here, so try the forward smash much
more than usual when it will kill your enemies.  Ike's forward smash is silent
for much of the attack, unlike G-dorf's "Get out of the way" punch, so it can
be surprisingly easy to hit a distracted enemy.  Anyone who sits on the edge
trying to edgecamp someone else is a prime target for this.  Avoid getting
stuck in the middle at all costs.  Forward smashing near the end of the time
limit is also valuable here.  None of this justifies spamming fsmashes, but
it does gain more value than usual.

8.3 -[ Sudden Death ]-


Mainly, you'll rely on Quick Draw for this fight; Counter, the neutral A
combo, fair, nair, and grabs can also be useful.  An uncharged Quick Draw
will KO your opponent; Counter, even when used on a low knockback attack
will KO your opponent.  For the record, every A or B button attack that is not
called "Aether" or the first hits of a combo will KO your opponent; Ike is a
powerful character after all.  Basically, try to hit your enemy with Quick
Draw if they are unskilled; if they are skilled, you may want to let them rush
toward you and then use Quick Draw or Counter.  A shield + down throw will
also kill your opponents.  The neutral A combo will also kill your opponent
with the final hit, if your opponent ends up next to you.  If your enemy just
wants to stall on an edge and wait for bombs to knock you off the stage, go
over to them and smack them with the down tilt; their ledge attack, even if
they pull it off, can't kill you (at least, Ganondorf's can't).  There's
plenty of luck involved in Sudden Death, but playing well still matters quite
a bit.

8.4 -[ Team ]-


Ike's (and every character's) strengths and weaknesses are exaggerated in team
play.  Ike has twice as many targets for a fair and forward smash, 
but he can get shredded if he ends up alone against two speedy characters,
since it's twice as likely that his slow attacks get interrupted.  Here are a
few quick tips for fighting in a 2v2 battle without friendly fire.

1. Don't stand next to your teammate.

If you stand near a teammate, you're more likely to get attacked by a speedy
attack.  However if you land an attack, this will often knock your enemy(s) 
out of your teammate's attack range.  You're better off fighting one on one so
you can actually hit your enemies.

2. Forward smash an enemy who is stunned by your teammate.

Occasionally your teammate will catch your enemy with one of those A, A,
infinite A combos, or an equivalent attack that holds your enemy in place
(Donkey Kong's Headbutt, Pit's Angel Ring).  Feel free to exploit this by
using Ike's forward smash for a quick kill, but realize that their teammate,
if they are decent, will try to save them from you.  This also applies to
certain Final Smashes; you can Aether an enemy who's being hit by Ike's final
smash or forward smash an enemy who's stunned by Link's final smash.

3. Help out a teammate who is grabbed or stunned.

Likewise, if your teammate is the one about to get hit, run over and help
them.  The running attack can work fine for this due to its good range, or a
shorthopped fair; just hit your enemy, and your teammate will thank
you.

4. Use grabs, particularly the down throw, less; horizontal throws are better
than usual though.

When you grab someone, you're vulnerable to getting hit while you perform the
throw, so try not to use them if your enemy's teammate can hit you.  However,
if you can throw their teammate at them and follow up with Quick Draw, you can
hurt both of them and still be fine.

5. Keep your distance in 2v1 situations.

Ike can get destroyed up close by any two characters, even slow ones.
Shorthop backward and fair if they start charging you, and play it safe until
your teammate respawns.  If you are the only one left, you still want to play
defensively unless you are getting attacked by projectiles.

8.5 -[ Items ]-


A few item tips are included, alphabetically with the smash ball added first;
enjoy.  Keep in mind that Ike has a double-hit combo for 15% with most melee
weapons, but the combo will fail against heavily damaged opponents.

-Smash Ball
The best way to get the smash ball is to get nearby, let your opponent hit it
once, then Aether them to ideally get the smash ball.  Ike can't get the smash
ball in one normal aerial, and his knockback is too high to go for a good
combo.  When you finish the Aether, they will often be in range for the Final
Smash, but they can dodge, so wait a little and then hit them if they don't
dodge.

-Beam Sword
Forward smash is a two hit combo with all of the range of the beam sword; use
it a lot if you won't get punished.  You do lack power when using it though.
It is also a decent projectile for edgecamping and such.

-Bumper
An overpowered projectile.  You can die to this very early, so air dodge at
all costs.  If you have it, toss it at an opponent when they are recovering,
and they will die if hit.

-Gooey Bomb
An opponent who is stuck with this will chase you and try to stick it to you;
use fair to keep them at bay.

-Hammer/Golden Hammer
Honestly, you're better off letting your opponent have it.  Even if your
opponent doesn't get a broken hammer, you can Counter the hammer if you're
careful; if you're on the edge, you can drop down and Aether the person 
several times.  If you get the hammer, many attacks can pierce through it
(Din's Fire and Yoshi Bomb) and hurt or kill you, so just leave it alone
unless you're confident you can kill your enemy quickly. If your opponent is
in the air, they are vulnerable from below, so try to know them off the
platform.

-Home run bat
Throw it at your enemy, but be wary of reflectors.  Don't swing it.  If your
opponent uses the smash attack, you can typically Counter it... so do that.

-Hothead
Ike can pump this up with Eruption, if you have time; otherwise just pick it
up and throw it, but make sure you don't throw it off by accident trying to
hit your enemy if you're on a stage where it can orbit.  If your enemy has
a reflector (and a brain), they can reflect this back around the stage, so you
may want to just toss it off.
You can counter an Enemy Hothead pretty easily, which can be useful for a 
faster but damaging attack.

-Pitfall
Pitfall = a free forward smash; you may or may not be able to charge the smash
depending on how damaged they are.  Don't hit with the tip, hit with the blade.

-Sandbag
It will block most projectiles; it will also count as a target for Quick Draw,
so don't use that.

-Super mushroom
You're bigger, but you're more vulnerable and neutral A combo will often miss.
Dsmash will come in handy here, and Counter works well against faster type
enemies.  If your enemy is bigger, they are an easier target; use your range
and Aether combos if you get a chance.  If they have better range than you,
use Counter.

-Superspicy curry
Counter it if you're on stage; there's nothing they can do to keep the fire
from hitting you, since Counter will go off before they get in grab range.
Aethering sometimes works if you're offstage.

-Timer
You're typically screwed, but Counter will last much longer than usual, so
use it.  Against mediocre opponents, you can easily bait them into hurting
themselves.  If your opponent is slowed, you can land all sorts of slow
attacks like fsmash and uair, so go for those.

-Warp star
This can't be countered for some reason, so air dodge it.


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*       Section 9: Final Thoughts                                             *
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Well, I hope reading the guide was worth it.  To really be good with Ike, I'd
recommend learning how to play a spammer and a quick close range character so
you can learn to better defend against them.  Who knows, you may even like
them better.  The point of Brawl is to have fun, and you'll be happiest by 
picking the character you like best.  If that's not Ike, that's fine, but at
the very least you should gain appreciation of Ike as someone who does more
than forward smash and Aether all day.

Finally, to reiterate some key points: Ike's two best moves are his neutral A
combo and his fair.  The neutral A combo is fast and great up close,
while the fair is great at range for both offense and defense that
also lets Ike move around.  Down/up throw to Aether is a great damaging grab 
combo.  Quick Draw and Counter are best used carefully.  Finally, jump off and
edgecamp your opponent after you knock them off.  Repetition is one of the
best ways to learn.

Good luck out there...


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*       Section 10: Contact Information                                       *
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I suppose I should add this.  My email is at yahoo.  The name used for this
email is th0a1st0st0unna
Take out the zeros, and you have my email (I really don't want more spam).
Please put FAQ in the title.  I check my email very infrequently (who would
have thought...), but I'll get to it eventually.

If you have a useful suggestion or comment, I'll add it in at my discretion
and give you credit for it.  If you have a question, I might sneak it in the 
guide and/or answer it.  Don't say anything about the unfinished matchups
until I'm done with them; I'll probably forget your presumably useful
information.

Don't ask about when the guide will be finished.  It'll probably happen.

Don't be obnoxious, and I won't be either.


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*       Legal Information                                                     *
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Copyright 2009 Tha Stunna

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