Joker Released for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Joker, the first DLC character of the challenger pack has been released and we’re here to analyze him

Joker, The Masked Rebel from Persona 5 has joined the battle with his Persona, Arsene. Joker, however, is no character for players who just button mash.

Joker’s set of moves borrow some of the other members of the cast, which makes sense as making new attacks every time isn’t easy. The notable moves that are borrowed from other characters are his down special Rebel’s Guard and Tetrakarn/Makarakarn depending on whether he has Arsene available. Rebel’s Guard is arguably one of his most important moves in his kit as it grants Joker knockback immunity for its duration and more charge for his Rebellion Gauge, allowing him much quicker access to Arsene. After Rebel’s Guard ends, he does a counter-attack to his attacker, dealing a small amount of damage. Tetrakarn and Makarakarn will become available after Joker releases Arsene, either countering melee attacks or reflecting ranged attacks respectively.

Joker’s forward air is a move borrowed from Captain Falcon and seems to have a lot of combo potential as it’s can combo into many follow-ups. This is great for how Joker seems to play as it has very little landing lag which seems to fit his get-in-get-out playstyle.

One of Joker’s more notable moves is Grappling Hook. This functions as his recovery while he’s off stage and auto-snaps to the ledge very easily. This is similar to a tether recovery like Link or Samus but has a slightly different use while Joker is grounded. While Joker is grounded, Grappling Hook is thrown at an angle, above Joker and catches the opponent if there is one in the area and pulls them in. This move is great to extend a combo that launches your target above you or to stop aerial approaches, however up tilt has better anti-air potential than Grappling Hook as it’s a closer hitbox to Joker and lasts enough of a duration to leave Joker not too vulnerable if he was to miss. Grappling hook gets changed to a new move called Wings of Rebellion while Arsene is unleashed.

Gun, Joker’s neutral special is a bit disappointing in comparison to the rest of his kit but has some minor uses. It’s a ranged attack, however, does no knockback unless your opponent is right in your face. This is okay, but the attack itself leaves you wide open and is quite slow to use. The two use cases this has are for edge guarding when you use jump while using Gun, causing Joker to leap and fire a barrage of bullets below him while moving forwards or backwards and for recovering horizontally by using gun then dashing towards the stage while mid-air. While Joker has Arsene, this attack changes to a barrage of 3 bullets normally and dealing slightly more damage, but still has the same use cases as before Arsene.

Joker, however, has one glaring weakness so far. His kill options are severely limited when he doesn’t have Arsene, primarily a forward smash or up smash as a hard read.

Overall, Joker seems to be a very tricky character between finding an opening and devastating your opponent with a quick combo while limiting many of their defensive options with his quick movement, granting him the ability to react to almost any situation.

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