by MiDe – Guest Contributor
I started competitive amiibo back in Smash 4 but have found a lot of success in Ultimate. I have multiple wins across a variety of characters and formats. For Falco, I have two wins, multiple high placements, and an 80% win rate in 30 games on Amiibots.
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For the most part, Falco doesn’t suffer from character-specific AI flaws. The one exception is his default ledge behavior, neutral B. Using laser at ledge is realistically never useful, as it doesn’t intersect with typical amiibo recovery patterns. On top of that, the move has tons of end lag, leaving Falco open for a punish and robbing him the opportunity to ledge guard. Thankfully this is the biggest issue with Falco and it can be mitigated easily by going edge guarding. Falco still suffers from universal AI problems, like sub-par use of reflectors.
Most optimal amiibo just spam two or three moves. Falco on the other hand will use a decent variety of moves. This playstyle will focus on strings, juggling, and edge guarding. The main way Falco will secure kills is through edge guarding or by using forward/up smash. Parrying is also integral to this playstyle, as it is the only way for Falco to beat smash attack spamming amiibo. I would overall describe this playstyle as aggressive. Falco should be in the enemy’s face stifling out anything they try to do.
How to Train the Falco amiibo
When on the ground near the opponent, Falco should be using forward smash, up smash, up tilt, or down tilt. Focus mainly on forward smash and up smash, while mixing in the tilts occasionally. When on the ground far away from the opponent, you have the option of using side special. Side special is good against amiibo who don’t shield and really bad against amiibo who do, so using it is up to you. I personally like it because you get a ton of mileage off the move when it actually lands.
Before I move into another area, I need to talk about grab. Grab is essential to Falco and should be used both close and far away (when I say use grab far away, I mean run up and dash grab). Grab is important because Falco has many strings off of it (some examples being up throw > up air and down throw > drag down nair). Other than going for dash grabs, you should only walk when training Falco. But you have to be careful not to overuse it as then you will struggle to get kills.
When the opposing amiibo is above you, Falco should do either up smash or up air. When landing, dair is your best bet. This is because Falco has a hard-coded down air > bair kill confirm (this is something you should also do when training). As stated in the AI Issues section, you basically have to edge guard. While offstage Falco should mainly go for dair while mixing in fair every now and then. Lastly, Falco should parry without being overly defensive. You want Falco to be the aggressor for most interactions, but he should still parry occasionally.
Why It Works
In the current meta, slow methodical spam amiibo are the top dogs. Falco can’t rely on that method as none of his moves are good enough to carry the character. So instead you go with an all-gas no breaks god gamer style of play which prevents the other amiibo from doing what they want. Add in the strings/edge guarding so Falco can consistently rack up damage and take early stocks. Then mix in a touch of the traditional meta with walking and smash attacks so your enemies won’t live too long. And voilà! You have created a monster Falco amiibo.