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Smash Redesign: Link

Updated: Jan 26, 2021

Link, the Hero of Time, returns once again to Smash Ultimate as one of twelve characters that have been in every single smash game. Known by many different titles throughout his game series, Link has appeared in many games. But does Link display the best version of himself that he could be?

Link has had many tools and gadgets throughout all his games, yet only four have ever really shown up as recurring weapons: Bombs, Boomerang, Bow, and Hookshot. Link doesn't even use the Hookshot in his current version. This lack of weapon variety must end, and I have an idea as to how we will do it.

Moveset history:

Like every other character from Super Smash Bros N64, Link has not changed much throughout the ages. If you want a full view of all the different changes that Link goes through, go ahead and click here to watch Madao Joestar's video on Link.

Long story short, Link's only changes from his original appearance has been to his dash attack, bombs, grab, and sometimes his boomerang. While this is a lot of changes for a character from Smash N64, it really doesn't show all the different things that Link is capable of. Let's add a few things to him to show off some of his best tools.

Rules: There will be a change in the rules for Link as opposed to the other characters I have done thus far. For all the other characters, I have used as much material from all of their games as possible. For Link, I will be using his games but only a select few. Any of the “Toon Link” games will not be considered for Link as those will be reserved for Toon Link. In addition, we will be focusing on the 3D versions of Link (Ocarina of Time, Twilight Princess, Skyward Sword, and Breath of the Wild. Additional inspiration will may be taken from Hyrule Warriors). Other games before Wind Waker will also be considered, but the focus will be on the 3D games. Now let’s go save Hyrule.

Neutral attack: The only thing I want to change about Link’s Neutral attack is the number of attacks that he does. He has always had a 3-hit combo for this move, but most of his games have a 4-hit combo for his attacks. Because of this, we’re just adding an extra attack to his combo. I think it will be better for him and will be unique among smash characters, as no one has a 4-hit combo as their neutral attack.

Tilt attacks: For the most part, Link has some very good moves for his tilt attacks, but we’re going to be changing them anyway. The real reason is because I really want to use more of Link’s tools in Smash Bros.

Forward tilt: We are going to be changing Link’s overhead forward tilt attack to a spin attack. This is because I want to free up his up special for something else later. The move will be very fast to come out but will not hit as hard as some of his other moves. It will act as a good “get away from me” tool. Also, Link will only spin once instead of spinning several times around like his current up special. It may seem a little unorthodox for a character to have a move that hits all around themselves as a non-special attack, but let’s not forget Megaman’s forward tilt is a projectile and Min-Min’s forward tilt reaches across the stage, so I honestly don’t think that it is that much of a stretch.

Down Tilt: Link Will Stomp the ground with his Iron Boots. As far as animation, think along the lines of King K. Rool’s down tilt. This attack will pop the enemy up like his current down tilt and allow for a potential combo. Functionally it will be the same.

Up tilt: There is no need to change Link’s up tilt.

Dash attack: No need to change Link’s dash attack. It represents his leap attack from the games.

Smash attacks: I think that most of Link’s Smash Attacks are good. There will be just one change.

Forward smash: No change.

Down smash: Instead of his double sword swipe, Link will instead take out a giant hammer and swing it all around himself. This will work a lot like Byleth’s down smash. Breath of the Wild Link will take out Daruk’s hammer-like weapon (called Boulder Breaker) while other forms of Link will take out a much larger version of the Megaton Hammer (probably the Hyrule Warriors version of the hammer).

Up smash: This will be Link’s new fastest smash attack. We’ll just make it come out a little bit faster. Other than that, there will be no change.

Specials: Here’s where Link shines. Link’s specials set him apart from all other sword characters because Link is all about spacing and projectile use. Aside from a few tweaks here and there, we’ll be keeping most of his moves.

Neutral special: Link pulls out a bow and fires an arrow. This has been his neutral special for a long time and it should remain that way. We will only be changing a few things about it though. First of all, Link will be able to cancel his bow by shielding. I have no idea why this has never been implemented for him, but that is what we will be doing. In addition, Link will be able to change the way he is facing while using the bow by simply pressing a direction. Finally, Link’s bow will also be able to be fired straight up by pressing up while the bow is notched. An arrow shot into the air will do less knockback so as to prevent cheesy early kills off the top of the stage.

Side special: No change. I personally really like the gale boomerang and wish that they had kept it, but just a regular boomerang is fine for me.

Down Special: No change. Remote bombs are awesome.

Up special: Link’s up special used to be a spin attack. Now it is going to change to Revali’s Gale. An updraft will be created and will let link soar into the air. Afterwards, Link will slowly float down to the ground with the help of his paraglider. Link will be able to act after this move and do any other move that he would normally be able to do such as attacking or using a special. After he acts during the move, the paraglider will be put away and Link won’t be able to bring it back out until the next time he uses the move. Think along the lines of Mr. Game and Watch’s up special, and you’ve got the right idea. In addition, a wind box will be created when Link uses this move which will stay active until he stops rising. Directly above him won’t have a wind box, so he can still be spiked, but his sides and below him will have a wind box. They’ll blow mostly up and slightly away, so you won’t be able to simply gimp a person by getting a wind box spike. Some characters, like Little Mac, may even be able to use the wind box for an extra recovery boost.

Aerials: I personally do not like some of Link’s aerials, especially his back air. It doesn’t make any sense to me. I can’t think of a single time when Link kicks in the air. We’re going to be changing a select few of them to get a better version of Link.

Neutral air: I really looked into this one extensively. Since Link spends so little time in the air, it’s hard to get an idea of what it should be. After some time, I finally found the helm splitter from Twilight Princess. This is what Link’s neutral air will be changed into. It will be a quick move where link will do a front flip and swing his sword all the way around himself. If you think of Meta Knight’s neutral air, but with a little bit of a longer range (because Link is bigger) then you’ve got the right idea. This will replace one of Link’s best moves, but I feel like this move will be a great option for Link.

Forward air: I thought about keeping this one because it’s a decent killing move and takes some skill to use, but I decided against it because I thought of something better. Instead, Link will take out his hammer again and perform a giant swing. This head of the hammer will be the sweet spot and will spike enemies. Closer to the hammer, and it will hit like a weaker version of Ike’s forward air. This is my favorite new move that I have thought of for Link.

Down air: The only thing I want to change about this move is that it can be cancelled earlier then it currently can. It’s such a risky move that no one likes using it. Otherwise, there will be no change for it.

Up air: No change. It’s a really good move.

Back air: The last change to Link’s aerials will be to his back air. Instead of the next-to-useless double kick that Link currently has, it will be changed to a solid shield bash similar to Palutena’s back air. This will be to reference another one of Twilight Princesses hidden sword skills: The Shield Bash (you can see the shield bash in the helm splitter section). Functionally, it will work identically to Palutena’s back air including being invincible on the shield.

Grab: The Hookshot will return as Link’s grab of choice. The range will be more like Samus’s grab though. As a side note, can we please have grabs fixed in ultimate? They kind of suck.

Forward throw: Link will kick the enemy before taking out the ice rod and freezing them alive. Aside from looking freaking awesome, it will create a ice mist in front of Link that will catch any enemy in the freeze. It won't start freezing the enemy until later percents though.

Back throw: Link will throw the enemy back and then shoot balls of fire at the enemy using the fire rod. Think along the lines of Mewtwo’s forward throw.

Up throw: This will remain as Link’s primary kill throw. There will be no change.

Down throw: no change for this one either.

And there you have it. Link redesigned to better fit all his different skills, items, and abilities. Do you like this redesign? What would you have done differently? Would you prefer this version or the current version? Let me know in the comments below.

That is the end of this Smash redesign. I hope you all enjoyed it. Share it around if you did. Until next time, stay bewildered.

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