by Luckman, Guest Contributor
Heya, my name is Luckman and I’m the author for this Link guide! Both my Links, Dauntless and Dark Link have very impressive results, with multiple wins and high placements in majors. My Link is Currently the 56th best amiibo on the all time rankings. Dauntless also has the current highest Amiibots record for Link, with a 96.7% win rate for 30 games, 94% for 50 games and 89% for 100 games! Link is one of the most popular Amiibo entered into Amiibo tournaments, which means there are a lot of good Links! However, Dauntless has become one of the most renowned Links to be trained, so I thought I’d share some notes on my quest to train one of the best Links in the scene. Hopefully you can replicate some of his success in your training after following this guide!
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Link amiibo AI Issues
Before we get into the heart of the guide, there are a couple things that should be addressed. Link’s most prominent issue with his AI is his unreliable remote bomb usage. At the time of writing, Link struggles to use his Down B effectively. Most of the time he holds onto his bomb, which obstructs all his best moves and for this reason makes him very vulnerable. If he decides to throw it, it is usually left onstage and will detonate at some point during the match. If he does decide to activate his bomb, he’s usually caught in the blast radius too which can cause accidental bomb SDs when detonated. For now, it’s best to avoid this move as Link has many other reliable options in his kit.
Up B (Spin Attack) is also a move you will want to avoid both grounded and aerial. On the ground, you will find Link uses it at suboptimal times, which leaves him very vulnerable for punishes since the move only hits once. In the air, Link will purposely recover above the ledge in an attempt to attack you. This is a sign he has learned too much Up B offstage, so be careful when edgeguarding him and try not to get hit by his Up B or hit him with Up B.
Dash Attack is another move you want Link to avoid. It has a slow startup that usually whiffs opponents. It has pretty good knockback, however it leaves Link open and is a lot less reliable at KOing than Forward Smash or Forward Tilt.
The final move to steer clear from is his Neutral B, Arrows. Link will try to snipe you at long distances with this move, but make sure he doesn’t hit you with it. His Side B, Boomerang, outclasses this projectile in amiibo which will be discussed later on in this guide, so for now just keep in mind to never use it!
Now that we know what to avoid, we can begin training Link! In terms of movement, make sure to walk with Link and keep him very grounded for the most part. Walking occasionally causes his Hylian Shield to block incoming projectiles and is better for amiibo in general. Link should stay mostly grounded as his strongest options come from his smash attacks. However, it is recommended Link goes offstage to edgeguard for the majority of opponents launched offstage, as his Forward Air can net KOs on opponents as early as 70%. Teaching some parrying as well can help him avoid some brutal attacks from some of his stronger foes, so make sure to teach your Link some as well!
In terms of move usage, here is a breakdown of which moves he should use in each situation.
When the opponent is in front of you, make sure to Forward Smash a lot and use some Forward Tilt. Link’s Forward Smash is one of the strongest in the game in terms of damage and knockback. It’s a two-part attack, the second which lands when pressing the attack button right after the first swing. At 0%, Link can also throw out a beam charge from his sword. Make sure the Link amiibo does not get hit by this from afar or he will start using Forward Smash at a distance, which is not what we want! Another thing to note about Link’s Forward Smash is the amiibo will not learn to connect it’s second hit until sometime around level 43, so don’t fret if he cannot hit you with it! If he only attacks you with the first hit, it counts as a successful Forward Smash. Just make sure you use both hits throughout the entirety of your training. Forward Tilt is another great move with a lot of knockback and is a bit quicker than Forward Smash. This means it lacks the power and knockback of Forward Smash, but is still a solid option that should be mixed in to get a jab at those quicker opponents.
When the opponent is above you, use a lot of Up Smash. You can also occasionally follow up with Up Air, as it has very high knockback which can KO a lot earlier than Up Smash. Don’t overuse it, otherwise he will become very jumpy, so make sure Up Smash is still your first priority. Up Smash is a three-hit overhead swing that can trap opponents that fall into it. The swings can go through battlefield’s left and right platforms as well, making it a good tool to use through them. What it lacks in horizontal range it makes up for in vertical, so be sure to only use it as an anti air and not when the opponent is grounded, you want to make sure he uses his other grounded options which are more suitable in that scenario. Up Air is a thrust Link performs skyward. It has pretty good knockback, which can follow up or catch opponents trying to land pretty well, which is why it can be used once in a while.
When landing, Down Air is your best option. It has a big, long lasting hitbox, which at low percents can combo into itself by bouncing on the opponent. It has good knockback, high priority and can even spike opponents who are trying to juggle him. You can add a hint of Neutral Air as well, at low percents Link can perform follow ups out of it. Since it comes out a lot quicker than Down Air as well, it can be safer in specific scenarios. Forward Aerial may seem appealing, since he can connect the first hit into a grounded follow up, but amiibo have lightning fast reaction time which usually causes his Forward Smash follow up to get shielded, so avoid using it as a landing option or in a short hop onstage. However, make sure to use Down Air almost every time.
At the ledge, you can teach Link Forward Tilt. It can catch opponents just below the stage or on ledge every so often and is a lot quicker than his Forward Smash. It has high knockback too, which can lead to KO’s near the edge of the stage. Another move you can alternate is Down Tilt. Link has the combo Down Tilt > Forward Air built in, so make sure to teach him to perform this as it can KO pretty early.
Although Link has strong ledge options, he should mainly go offstage to chase down the opponent after launching them offstage. This is where a big bulk of his KOs come from, so it’s crucial he does. When offstage, your main method of attack should be Forward Air. Great knockback and the double hit will catch opponents in it pretty easily. His strongest offstage option. Don’t be afraid however to add in some Neutral Aerial as well, which causes a lot of offstage gimps that also help net him KOs. This can work better in specific matches against characters with poor recoveries since it comes out quicker than Forward Air, so make sure to teach some Neutral Air along with Forward Air offstage.
When the opponent is at a distance onstage, your only option will be to spam Side B (Boomerang). It has good range and launches opponents at good angles for Link to perform follow ups. As of the 9.0 patch, Link has the built in combo:
Side B > Aerial Neutral B > Follow Up, where ‘Follow Up’ is determined based on his positioning
If he is too far to attack, he will use another arrow. If he is close to the opponent, he may go for a grab or an attack (mainly Dash Attack, sometimes Forward Tilt / Smash). It makes his offense game very strong, so make sure to use as much Boomerang as possible from a distance.
At this point, your Link should have all the tools to make him a noble knight! However, there are a few moves you can sprinkle in to turn your noble knight into a hero of the wild. These moves should never be used frequently, but adding them in every so often can make your link the strongest in the chain. The first move is Down Smash. A quick two swipes at the floor around him, it can catch opponents right next to him. It also catches rolls and can even send lying opponents flying offstage. Great to use a little at ledge as well. The second move is short hop Neutral Aerial. It comes out quick and fast, which can intercept some foes who have quicker attacks than him. Using short hop Back Air in this regard too is also helpful as Link can use it to extend his follow ups. The final one is grab. Grab is a great combo starter and extender which helps Link against opponents that hold shield a lot on his Forward Smash or parry a lot. Link has the following combos out of grab:
Down Throw > Up Tilt String (and you can also follow this up with an Up Air)
Up Throw at high percents is a kill throw
Remember to use these moves very rarely, you want Link to still prioritize his main training.
Why It Works
With all that said, this concludes the Link guide! Link is usually thought of very simply as Boomerang and Up Smash only, but upon further inspection there’s a lot more than meets the eye. He is very technical and training him optimally isn’t an easy task. Don’t let this scare you, however! Link’s smart AI allows him to do decently even at his worst, so have confidence, courage and be “Dauntless” in your training!