How to Train a Bowser amiibo in Smash Ultimate

By Blank, Guest Contributor

Blank is the winningest amiibo trainer in Ultimate history, having pioneered nearly the entire S, A+ and A tier cast. Many amiibo are in their placements on the tier list solely based on how recently Blank has submitted them to a tournament. Blank pioneered Bowser with RedBull, still the winningest Bowser in amiibo history.

Bowser is a very powerful amiibo in Ultimate, so powerful that most tournaments ban him outright! I have written this guide to maximize your Bowser’s potential, despite the ban.

AI Issues

Bowser is better off on the ground, but making a jumpy Bowser can often happen accidentally. Be careful about using  Neutral air – he’ll spam it to no end, and it can ruin your intended playstyle without gaining effectiveness. While Neutral air is powerful, the best Bowsers avoid these moves in favor of more effective options.

Back air also will cause your Bowser to jump too much. Use it sparingly.

In addition to these cautions, be aware that Bowser can either choose to use down air, or any of his other aerials. If Bowser is taught to use down air that will be the only aerial move he uses, and that option has some benefits in tournament. However, he will miss out on the KO potential of Back and Forward air.

Bowser’s AI is one of the best in the game, and is difficult to get wrong. Even if he’s poorly trained, he’ll probably still beat most of his opponents in amiibo competition.

Overall Playstyle

Bowser is best on the ground due to his incredibly powerful smash attacks. However, his forward air enables him to take the fight to the air when necessary. Bowser is a versatile amiibo with a useful recovery, so a focus on KO power is most of what it takes to make a good Bowser. It is important to note that Bowser is very vulnerable offstage to gimping, so going offstage shouldn’t be Bowser’s focus.

How to Train Bowser

Instead of going over every move in Bowser’s arsenal, I will go over the moves that are most useful. If a move is not listed in this guide, you can assume it is not useful in any circumstance and should be avoided. Moves will also be discussed in order of importance.

Up tilt is Bowser’s best tool for damage-building and kills relatively early – it hits all around him, making it superior to Up smash as a spammable move. At low percents it even combos into itself! Make sure your Bowser uses Up tilt.

Forward tilt is Bowser’s most spammable kill move. It takes stocks much earlier than Up tilt and comes out only a bit slower, in exchange for only hitting in front of or slightly above or below Bowser. Even when this move is parried, Bowser is not left vulnerable for very long.

Forward smash is Bowser’s earliest kill move, killing at very low percents. Against light characters, they can die as low as 20 percent! This move isn’t spammable, as it leaves Bowser wide open when it misses. It can also be parried, leaving him wide open for a counterattack.

Back air is Bowser’s most powerful aerial option and a reliable kill move, but with a downside. Spamming it will make your Bowser jumpy, and he is better off on the ground. Carefully consider if your Bowser should know this move, and how often he ought to use it.

Forward air is Bowser’s best option for attacking amiibo on the ledge and his best combo aerial. He can chase opponents across the stage with forward air, and use it for edgeguarding as well.

Down air is situational, but not terrible in amiibo. Its collision with the ground covers more distance than his shell, and has a secondary hit that limits his vulnerability. It’s also great against amiibo who attempt to juggle bowser in the air, but beware using this in the air too often. If Bowser uses it too often, he won’t use his other aerials which are good moves, and he may even short hop into it.
Bowser Bomb is Bowser’s down special and it breaks shields, this is an extremely risky mood that works best alongside a Bowser who likes to forward smash. If this misses, you are likely to lose a stock so this move should only be used for fun, or for Bowsers going for extremely early forward smash kills.

These are Bowser’s best moves onstage,  but these next two moves fill a specific role and both should be used. Also, due to being vulnerable to spikes it is NOT reccomended for Bowser to fight offstage.

Bowser’s neutral special Fire Breath, is an excellent ledge guard. It very rarely steals stocks but it accumulates heavy damage as the game goes on.

Down tilt is Bowser’s stock-stealing ledge guard. This move has very good knockback on the ledge and it hits twice, making it impossible to airdodge.

Why it Works

Bowser’s sheer power is enough for most amiibo to rise through the ranks, but he combines it with a staunch AI and a versatile playstyle that can break most well-trained amiibo. While an amiibo with perfect parrying can theoretically beat Bowser consistently, only a few matches have ever occurred where that was the case. Until parrying becomes a necessity for amiibo competition, Bowser will continue to dominate.

That wraps up the Bowser guide! He is truly a terror to behold, but in my opinion a well trained bowser is a fun amiibo to watch – he utilizes much of his kit! Until next time this is Blank, signing out.

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