How to Win the Amiibo Tag Team Tournament

by Doc – Owner, Founder, Has Spent Too Much Time Theorycrafting This

Nintendo announced the return of the Smash Ultimate Amiibo Tag Team Tournament this upcoming weekend. This is a big deal for amiibo trainers: it gives us a chance to scan in our heavyweight amiibo monsters and curbstomp untold numbers of innocent children and their amiibo. It’s cathartic.

If you’d like to join in the curbstomping festivities, and potentially take home a trophy for yourself, here’s the best way to win the Amiibo Tag Team Tournament.

Step 1: Choosing Your Amiibo

Mosey on over to the amiibo tier list and take note of who’s at the top. You’ll see that the best amiibo are, by and large, heavyweights with lots of KO power. That’s because amiibo don’t combo too well, but they can use less-complicated attacks pretty easily.

Dig through your collection and train the highest-tier heavyweight on that list but not Incineroar. Incineroar is so high on the list because Alolan Whip takes advantage of amiibo AI flaws, but you’ll be fighting human opponents, so he won’t help as much as the other options.

In my experience, Bowser is the best amiibo for the Tag Team Tournament. He’s the heaviest in the game, he’s impossible to screw up using amiibo training guides and his recovery is functional on most stages in the game. Just don’t use Fire Breath.

Step 2: Spirit Loadout

Armor Knight.

No, seriously, it’s the best spirit in the game, and definitely your best option in a group fight like this one. Super Armor comes close but loses its effectiveness after a certain damage level, and Bowser’s “Tough Guy” mechanic already does some of that job. Armor Knight is consistently effective through the entire stock, and the knockback boost will make an excellent stack if you choose to run Trade-Off Ability alongside Armor Knight.

You can only get Armor Knight on your amiibo through the Halberd spirit (not Black Knight, which is a primary spirit), which is incredibly rare. See the Armor Knight guide I linked to above for info on how to get one if you don’t already have it.

Alongside Armor Knight, you could run Movement Speed Up or Trade-Off Ability. Run Movement Speed Up if you want your amiibo to avoid the potential pitfalls of non-tournament legal stages like Great Cave Offensive and Mario Circuit, where amiibo sometimes die from stage hazards. Run Trade-Off Ability if you need to pack that extra punch. Personally I’d recommend Trade-Off Ability more, because your opponents will probably also be using heavyweights.

For stats, you should run the safest option: 2100 Attack, 2100 Defense. Bowsers might be able to get away with something more lopsided towards Attack, but generally it’s best to be on the safe side and balance it out.

Step 3: The Actual Training

You’ll train this amiibo the same way you’d train any other amiibo: put spirits on at level 1, and then just reference our Expert Amiibo Guide for the basics of amiibo training.

Step 4: Creating Your Team

Your amiibo will be landing most of the kills, and will probably outlive you in most matches. However, this doesn’t exempt you from carrying your own weight. Your role in the Amiibo Tag Team Tournament is to score kills off their human opponent. Since Items are set to Medium for the 2022 Tournament, you’ll need to pay careful attention to what comes down the item pipeline, and use it to your advantage.

I recommend choosing a heavyweight character that you’re good at, has easily-accessible spikes and can play in laggy conditions. Don’t go with a character that’s high tier for humans: those characters often rely on comboing and mindgames, and those simply aren’t options against jacked-up amiibo with massive stats.

My personal preference is Captain Falcon, but most players find Ganondorf, Bowser, Terry and other “amiibo high tiers” to be of use as well. Don’t use Chrom in this case, because his “Chrom Cheese” doesn’t work on human opponents, and will get you killed fast.

Step 5: Getting Used to Fighting Amiibo

Fighting amiibo is not like fighting human opponents. There’s a lot of unique opportunities for gaining the upper hand that amiibo provide, but also a lot of missing mindgames and meta-strategies that amiibo just cut through. They have perfect DI, perfect reaction times and sometimes even perfect parrying.

Your best option is to train several of your own amiibo with spirits and use the same character against all of them. Take note of things I’ve described in my videos, like catching them when they air dodge to the ledge, or spiking if they recover from below it. If possible, practice especially against the heavyweights that other trainers are likely to use. You’ll want to get used to edgeguarding them because all amiibo of the same character have the same recovery routines. Edgeguarding amiibo is much more straightforward than edgeguarding human opponents.

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