The Beginner’s Guide to Training the Greninja amiibo in Smash Ultimate

Welcome to Amiibo Doctor! In addition to training this amiibo, we also have the most cutting-edge guides for nearly every amiibo in the competitive amiibo scene’s many Discord servers. You should also reference our Raid Boss amiibo guides, and if you’re having trouble winning in competitive amiibo, check the official amiibo tier list! Happy training!

by Sinsei, Guest Contributor

I have won a SUAL tournament and made Top 8 4 times, only missing Top 8 once, where I finished 9th. I have well over 30 hours training Greninja, and I am currently the highest rated Greninja in North America.

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Why Greninja?

Greninja is an amiibo that can really only become better as optimizations are made by trainers. Greninja can be one of the most exciting amiibo to watch as seeing AI perform combos and kill confirms you taught is a rush.

Yo, SinSei here with the Greninja guide.

I’d like to preface this guide by saying Greninja can get really complicated and if you have any questions please reach out to me through either USAC or SUAL. BUT hopefully this guide answers any questions you may have.

Currently I have the highest ranked Greninja, a 9th place finish at a major, and my Greninja is widely considered the best outside of Japan.

Editor’s note: In Japan, Greninja is considered to be a much better amiibo than in the overall scene. This is likely due to Japanese amiibo playing more “humanely”, giving Greninja a better shot. The top Greninjas in Japan play a lot like SinSei’s.

AI ISSUES:

There are a few issues with Greninja’s AI that should be noted before training one. The first is that Greninja’s AI is extremely fragile. This means some of Greninja’s moves cause the AI to spam them. Down air is a move that Greninja loves to use, but it’s terrible in a competitive setting. It does not kill, deals only medium damage, and is extremely unsafe when whiffed.

While it is a good kill move, Greninja should avoid being trained with its Side Special, Shadow Sneak. Shadow Sneak, when whiffed, is very punishable. Combine that with the fact the AI likes to spam it, and you end up with more overall downtime and lower DPS. He’ll also use Shuriken at the ledge, which does minimal damage and can cause a failed ledge trap. As a general rule of thumb, avoid using the B button when training Greninja.

Finally up special, this move is generally a great recovery with fantastic distance. The only problem being that Greninja will always aim directly for the ledge so in some situations where he could recover high and drift to survive he will SD instead.

Overall Playstyle:

Primarily, Greninja functions as a grounded combo and musket style amiibo using Dash attack and Down tilt to combo and Forward smash to build damage. With Greninja I recommend a 80-20 split where 80 percent of the time you are walking and the other 20 percent is dashing. This allows for what I found to be the best split of using spaced Forward smashes to build damage while also allowing for dash attack combos to shine.

Moves to use – Dash attack, Up smash, Forward smash, Down smash(At ledge), Down tilt, Forward air,

Moves to avoid:

Down air, Side Special, Up tilt, Shuriken, Forward tilt, Up air, and Jabs.

AI COMBOS:

Down tilt > Forward air (Only full hop version)

Down tilt > Side Special (While occasionally hype, this often will miss and ruin a potential KO)

Down tilt > Forward tilt

Down tilt > Forward Smash

Dash attack > Forward air

Dash attack > Up Smash

How to train Greninja

(For everything below, remember as a trainer to really focus on not missing any of the combos mentioned during training. We need it to always connect the second hit. In addition when the phrase falling (aerial) is used I am referring to either coming off the respawn platform or when falling after being hit into the air. Never jump with the sole purpose being to perform an aerial.)

As stated before we are doing an 80-20 split of walking to dashing so do your best to get as close to those numbers as you can. Secondly in terms of going off stage for edge guards vs staying on for ledge traps, splitting these roughly 90-10 edge guards with Greninja can be inconsistent but work as a somewhat X-Factor to steal a stock. Overall, ledge traps will allow for more consistent damage and KOs. Finally, I’d like to mention crouching and crawling. Crawling is a great tool, after you knock them off stage you should crawl to the ledge. This will not remove but reduce the use of Neutral B at ledge. In addition crawling can cause moves to whiff during standard interactions but greatly decreases your mobility so use it sparingly. 

For percents 0-30, focus on using:

Dash attack > Up Smash

Down tilt > Forward Smash

Raw Forward Smash

For percents 30-70, focus on using:

Down tilt > Forward Smash

Falling Forward Air

Falling Nair

Raw Forward Smash

For percents 70-100, focus on using:

Dash attack > Forward Air

Raw Forward Smash

Anti air Up Smash

Forward Air Edgeguards

Down Smash (Only at ledge)

For percents past 100, focus on using:

Down tilt > Forward air

Raw Forward Smash

Up Smash

Down Smash (Only at ledge)

Why it Works

This method allows for a strong well ranged ground game with F smash while also allowing for devastating combos and kill confirms using dash attack and down tilt. The use of falling aerials will help with disadvantage and landing. The combos will help to build damage to the percentages where Greninja can secure KOs. 

Final thoughts:

Greninja is a solid mid tier amiibo capable of performing far more combos compared to other amiibo. He is exciting to watch due to all of the combos and kill confirms. Greninja however, is a very difficult amiibo to train properly as the AI is very fragile. Trained fully optimally I believe Greninja can go toe to toe with many of the higher tier amiibo as with this method it allows for a solid matchup spread.

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