by Doc, Owner, Founder, Tired of Being Whipped
The Incineroar amiibo is by far the most annoying in the metagame. He’s incredibly simple and easy to optimally train, and is pretty unbeatable no matter who you put against him -there’s no getting past Alolan Whip. To make matters worse, he was only released about a year ago, so everyone and their mother has one.
If Nintendo were to nerf the Incineroar amiibo without changing the kit (they wouldn’t want to alter mainstream competitive play), how could they go about this?
1. Nerfing Alolan Whip AI
Amiibo recognize their hitboxes almost perfectly, regardless of the move. If a move can connect, then they’ll recognize it can connect. There’s a few screwy exceptions to this – the Belmonts, for example, will use Forward smash at point-blank range and all the way at the tip. For the most part though, they recognize hitboxes really well.
Take a dump on that. Make it so that Incineroar doesn’t recognize just how far Alolan Whip will go, so he’ll only use it when opponents are closer to him. That way he can still use it, and it’s still good, but it’s not so broken that it’ll connect from all the way across the stage.
2. Force Down Smash onstage
Mii Gunner has been well-known for their Missile spam for a long, long time. This is no longer the case: it appears that in 10.0, Nintendo forced Mii Gunner to interrupt their Missile spam with another move. Mii Gunner can no longer use Missile more than twice in a row consistently.
Nintendo should do the same thing with Incineroar. While Down smash is a great move, and it’s the only other recommend move for Incineroars besides Alolan Whip, interrupting an Alolan Whip spam with Down smash might be what the meta needs. It won’t completely neuter Incineroar, because Down smash is still a great KO move, but it will leave him significantly more open than he already was.
3. Unweight Alolan Whip
Incineroar can only spam Alolan Whip because Alolan Whip has no limits on how much it can be favored. Normally that’s a good thing – as trainers, we want to have as much freedom with our amiibo as we can, with special subroutines to cover its weaknesses (Fox having combos out of Dash attack is a good example of this). But in this case, it’s far too easy to make an optimal Incineroar, and it would be best for the meta if this AI intervention took place. Having that freedom is what’s causing Incineroar to be banned.